Audiology and Hearing Therapy
Audiology involves the assessment, management and therapeutic rehabilitation of children and adults with hearing and balance problems and associated disorders. Our work involves a variety of assessment techniques and rehabilitative provision in which hearing aids play a large role. We are a multidisciplinary service linking with a wide variety of other professionals.
- Audiology Assistant – carries out tasks such as testing hearing thresholds, assisting at hearing aid repair clinics and taking ear impressions.
- Audiologist – sees a wide range of patients and assesses and manages their hearing difficulties. Audiologists are professionally qualified members of staff and tend to work principally with adult hearing assessment and hearing aid work.
- Audiological Scientist – also sees a wide range of patients for assessment and management. Audiological scientists are trained at Masters level and tend to be involved with more specialist work e.g. vestibular (balance) assessment and paediatrics. Audiological scientists also have a greater involvement in service development, management or may be involved in research.
What Qualifications are required?
To work as an audiology assistant, you need a good level of general education e.g. GCSEs in English, Maths and Science. You can be employed by a department and train on the job, completing relevant courses along the way.
Audiologists currently need to complete a 4-year BSc (hons) degree in Audiology and this can be done at a number or universities around the UK. During the BSc Audiology programme you will undertake a series of clinical placements, including a 1-year full time clinical placement in the third year of the degree. A logbook of this training is completed as evidence of your competence in clinical work. On completion of the degree you are able to register as a Clinical Physiologist and work unsupervised.
Audiological Scientists currently complete a science degree and then apply for an MSc in Audiology. Post MSc experience and clinical training (currently through a scheme called the Higher Training Scheme) is essential, before individuals can qualify and register as a clinical scientist. The complete training package takes 4 years, including study at University for the MSc in Audiology.
What Career Opportunities are there?
There are currently very good career opportunities. Many graduates will take up a full time position in an NHS Audiology department, or undertake work as a Locum Audiologist for a period of time. Individuals keen to train as Audiological Scientists can apply for training posts run through Audiology departments around the country. These are advertised yearly on www.nhsclinicalscientists.info.
Salaries (April 2009)
Approximate starting wages are:
Audiology assistant: £13,233 (Band 2)
Audiologist: £20,710 (Band 5)
Trainee Audiological Scientist: £24,831 (Band 6)
Qualified and registered Audiological Scientist £29,789 (Band 7)
Further information can be found on:
British Academy of Audiology
British Society of Audiology
University of Southampton - Institute of Sound & Vibration Research
An informal day visit to observe the work involved can be arranged by contacting the department on 023 8082 5124.
For more information on Audiology, please visit the main Audiology and Hearing Therapy page:
Audiology and Hearning Therapy