Overall philosophy of composite material inspection is discussed with a sample problem presentation to illustrate the utility of guided wave analysis and the use of field distributions across the thickness of a specimen to predict its sensitivity to specific anomalies in the material. Guided Lamb-type waves in a three-layered laminated composite plate with different anomaly content is studied in this paper. Our work is focused primarily on the detection of interlaminar bond layer imperfections and cracks normal to the interfaces. A Lamb wave mode selection criteria is discussed with respect to defect sensitivity analysis. Selection of appropriate modes and frequencies is suggested by an approach based on an analysis of the modal displacement and power distribution across the multilayered structure as opposed to the previously utilized approach based on a numerical analysis of the dispersion relations for different boundary conditions and effective material properties.