The ear consists of three sections: the outer ear, middle ear, and inner ear. Each plays a vital role in hearing. Here is what they do and how they work:
The Outer Ear is the visible portion on the side of your head (called the auricle or pinna) down the external auditory canal to the tympanic membrane (eardrum).
This Middle Ear is the area from the inner portion of the eardrum to the oval window. This includes the middle ear cavity, trio of tiny bones, and the Eustachian tube (the tube that opens to unplug your ears when you drive into higher elevations).
The Inner Ear contains the cochlea (organ of hearing), vestibular system (organ of balance), and the nerves that feed the brain information.