What is an audiologist?
A professional with a master’s degree or doctorate from an accredited university graduate program who:
- Diagnoses, treats and manages individuals with hearing loss or balance problems
- Determines appropriate patient treatment by combining a complete history with a variety of specialized auditory and vestibular assessments
- Presents a variety of treatment option to the patient; dispenses and fits hearing aids as part of a comprehensive rehabilitative program
According to the American Academy of Audiology, forty years ago a master’s degree was the required entry degree for the profession. Today the scope of practice in Audiology has expanded substantially and as a result, there are additional academic and clinical training requirements. Master's level academic programs no longer exist and have been replaced by Doctor of Audiology (AuD) programs. Since 2007, the AuD has become the entry-level degree for the clinical practice of audiology and is the required entry level degree for the profession.
What do audiologists do?
As an audiologist, you will join more than 13,000 practicing audiologists in the U.S. and stand at the center of the team providing advanced hearing care and:
- Evaluate, diagnose and treat hearing and balance disorders
- Prescribe and fit prosthetic devices to patients with hearing impairments
- Direct rehabilitative programs for the hearing and balance impaired
- Design and direct programs to identify newborns with hearing impairments
- Assist children with learning disabilities, central auditory processing disorders
- Identify, prevent, evaluate and treat a variety of hearing disorders
Where do audiologists practice?
Audiologists provide services in a continually expanding range of professional options that allow for career flexibility in location, hours and type of practice:
- Private practice offices
- Public and private schools
- Rehabilitation Centers
- Community clinics
- State and federal Government agencies
- Industry with hearing conservation programs
- Community hearing and speech centers
- Residential health facilities
- Colleges and universities
- Health departments
- Long-term care facilities
- Physicians’ offices
- Research laboratories
What do audiologists earn?
The American Academy of Audiology (AAA) reports that the average annual earnings for audiologists is $85,867 for full-time employment (2011 Survey).