An audiologist is a professional who specializes in the testing of hearing. Audiologists also function as hearing-aid providers, but not all hearing-aid providers are audiologists. An audiologist is the professional who specializes in evaluating and treating people with hearing loss. The audiologist has extensive training and skills to evaluate the hearing of adults, infants and children of all ages and is a professional specifically trained in all non-medical aspects of hearing impairment. He or she must earn at least a master degree, or a Doctor of Audiology (Au.D) degree to practice the profession of Audiology and are committed to improving and helping people of all ages.
A licensed audiologist must have completed nine months of supervised experience and passed a written, State-approved licensing exam. Licensed audiologists are required by law to complete at least 30 hours of continuing competency learning activities every three years. Licensed audiologists have received extensive education and experience in regards to hearing disorders and injury. They hold masters or doctorial degrees from accredited universities and have received special training in assessing, identifying, and assessing hearing disorders. They must also complete a full-time internship, and passed a challenging national competency examination. Licenser requirements may vary from state to state.
The audiologist is a health professional , who has been trained through significant clinical work and education to assess, diagnose, test for, and help people compensate for hearing problems. When hearing problems are diagnosed, they may help people cope with such problems, or make recommendations for medical treatment that could end or address these problems.
Audiologists provide diagnostic evaluations and counseling for functional hearing loss or pseudohypacusis and are also involved in the treatment of persons with balance disorders. Audiologists may also recommend assistive listening devices such as alerting systems, or counsel the patient regarding the appropriateness of cochlear implants. Audiologists are experts at helping people with hearing problems but they do not prescribe medication or perform surgery. They are professionally certified and carry state license to practice audiology and to fit and dispense hearing aids. Audiologists and speech-language pathologists can be found through hospitals, universities, and clinics. Audiologists perform real ear measurements (computer test) to ensure appropriate hearing aid performance. The goal is to make soft speech audible, loud sounds not uncomfortable and not distort at loud levels while providing a broad frequency range for more natural sound.