The Technical Standards of Salus University Osborne College of Audiology reflect the essential qualities, abilities and functions that are required of student’s pursuing the Doctor of Audiology (AuD) degree. Ability to meet these Technical Standards is required of entering students and must be continually demonstrated with proficiency throughout the student's progress in the AuD degree program.
The following standards were adopted with the awareness that a balance must be achieved between competing interests:
- the rights of applicants and students;
- the safety of students, their co-workers, and patients;
- the significant clinical education component of the College’s curricula;
- the accreditation requirements for the College; and
- the conditions for licensure of our graduates.
The institution upholds a public health responsibility to ensure its graduates are fully competent, capable individuals prepared to provide benefit to the community in which they practice. Therefore, it is important that the individual student investing their time be fully knowledgeable of the qualities, abilities and functions deemed necessary to succeed in this rigorous educational program. For this reason, individuals with visual, auditory, physical and/or psychosocial impairments severe enough to require an intermediary may find that accommodation is not sufficient to ensure success.
The intent of this document is to guide students in making an informed decision regarding clinical audiology as a career. To complete the AuD curriculum and enter practice as a licensed audiologist, all students must possess abilities and skills in the domains of communication, intellectual-cognitive, motor, sensory-observational and behavioral-social that are consistent with the skill sets of doctoral-level, healthcare providers.
Communication Skills (all in Standard English)
Students must possess the ability:
- To use speech, hearing and vision to communicate effectively (elicit, convey and clarify information) with patients, patients’ support networks, faculty, staff, peers, other health care professionals and the general public, utilizing oral, written and non-verbal communication modes.
- To understand the written content presented in the educational program and to adequately complete all written assignments in the timeframe specified by faculty.
- To complete all reading assignments in the timeframe specified by faculty and to synthesize accurately and quickly large volumes of information presented in written and electronic formats.
- To understand and utilize non-verbal communication in order to meet curricular and clinical demands.
- To synthesize knowledge and apply same to patient care through written and oral presentation.
- To modify communication styles to meet the audiences’ communication needs.
- To share, elicit and record information from patients, preceptors, peers and other health professionals verbally and in a recorded format observing and upholding HIPAA and FERPA guidelines.
- To communicate effectively and professionally in person, over the phone and in electronic format.
The demonstration of sufficient skills in written and spoken standard English may be accomplished by passing the Test of Spoken English (TSE), Speaking Proficiency English Assessment Kit (SPEAK) and The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) with scores of 60, 230 and 250, respectively.
- Students must be able to demonstrate higher-level cognitive abilities, including:
- memory and retention
- rational thought and conceptualization
- measurement and calculation
- visual-spatial comprehension
- organization, analysis and synthesis
- representation (oral, written, diagrammatic, three-dimensional)
- clinical reasoning, ethical reasoning and sound judgment
Students must possess the ability:
- To learn though a variety of modalities including classroom instruction and group collaborative activities.
- To acquire, comprehend, synthesize, integrate and apply a large body of written and oral information that is sufficient to meet curricular and clinical requirements.
- To think critically, solve complex problems and make sound clinical judgments, all in accordance with the accepted best practices of patient care and in a timely fashion.
- To identify and utilize resources to successfully improve one’s knowledge and skills.
- To comprehend three-dimensional and spatial relationships.
- To reflect and evaluate one’s knowledge and abilities regarding academic performance and clinical skills for the purpose of identifying strengths, weaknesses, limitations and areas needing improvement.
Motor / Sensory Skills
- Students must possess sufficient visual, auditory, tactile and motor abilities to allow them to gather information
- from written reference material
- from oral presentations
- by observing demonstration
- by studying medical illustrations in multiple formats
- by observing a patient and his/her environment
- by observing clinical procedures performed by others
- by reading digital or analog representations of physiologic phenomena
Students must possess the ability:
- To perform actions requiring coordination of gross and fine motor movement and equilibrium.
- To demonstrate the physical stamina to meet the demands of the classroom and clinical activities.
- To monitor, through both visual and auditory modalities, equipment displays and controls (including hearing aids) used for the assessment and treatment of patients.
- To visually perceive and identify text, numbers, tables and graphs presented, including those associated with diagnostic instruments.
- To observe a patient’s activity and behavior during assessment and treatment.
- To interpret patient responses regardless of the mode of response (auditory, visual or mechanical device).
- To minimize inaccuracies in the flow of information by possessing a minimum level of hearing acuity.
- To perform an otoscopic examination of a patient to assess the status of the ear and adjacent area of the head.
- To visually perceive and identify anatomical structures, both normal and abnormal.
- To conduct hearing aid listening checks to assess device functionality.
- To respond quickly in order to provide a safe environment for patients in an emergency situation.
- To access public and non-public transportation to academic and clinical locations.
- To utilize testing, treatment environments and materials in adherence with best practice protocols.
- To manipulate patient-utilized equipment (e.g. wheel chair, oxygen tank, communication devices) in a safe manner.
- To adhere to universal precaution measures and to meet safety standards applicable to the clinical settings and educational activities.
- To access and utilize technology for clinical management of patients to include, but not limited to, scheduling programs, coding and billing programs, therapeutic programs and general use of computer technology in a safe and efficient manner.Behavioral - Social Skills
- Students must possess the emotional health and management skills (coping mechanisms) or proactively make use of available university resources to:
- prioritize competing demands
- function effectively in stressful circumstances
- tolerate physically taxing workloads
- display flexibility in response to changing circumstances
- demonstrate integrity, respect, compassion, tolerance and acceptance of others in their interactions with patients, peers, faculty and other members of the health care team.
Students must possess the ability:
- To recognize and show respect for all individuals of different age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds and intellect.
- To refrain from imposing personal, religious, sexual and cultural values on others.
- To establish and maintain appropriate professional relationships.
- To demonstrate the perseverance, diligence and commitment necessary to complete the educational program requirements as directed within the allotted time.
- To critically evaluate her/his performance, be forthright about errors, accept constructive criticism and respond by modification of behavior.
- To acknowledge conflicts of interests, mistakes and adverse outcomes and cooperate in the resolution of same.
- To demonstrate appropriate behaviors to protect the safety and well-being of others.
- To place professional behavior and duties above one’s own convenience.
- To demonstrate acceptable social skills in professional and social interactions with others.
- To possess and express appropriate compassion, integrity and empathy for others.
An individual with a diagnosed psychiatric disorder may in the educational program as long as the condition is under sufficient control for adherence to these Behavioral – Social Skills standards.
The AuD degree program at Salus University is designed to prepare students to enter the profession as a generalist with the knowledge, skills and values necessary to perform successfully all the required functions associated with the scope of practice as an entry-level audiologist.
The competing interests and requirements of the clinical components of the educational program may prevent some prospective students from continuing the process of enrolment if they cannot meet these technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodations. Additionally, during the educational program, should a student become unable to maintain these technical standards, with or without reasonable accommodations, the student is subject to dismissal from the program.
In keeping with the requirements of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the University’s philosophy, we are committed to making reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities to enable them to meet these technical standards in order to perform successfully the skills necessary to fulfill the requirements of the educational program.
If a student has a disability that they feel may require accommodation to perform any of the tasks identified as essential to the clinical practice of audiology, it is the student's responsibility to inform the Office of Academic Success in the Department of Student Affairs so appropriate steps can be taken to accommodate the student's needs.
Students should carefully review this “Technical Standards” document to determine whether or not they can meet these standards (with or without accommodation).