When your child’s hearing is tested, it will be done by an audiologist – a specialist in hearing care. Audiologists are university graduates with extensive and ongoing postgraduate training in hearing sciences and human communications. Their role incorporates not just hearing assessment, hearing aid prescription, fitting and management but also rehabilitation and evaluation of more complex hearing concerns.
An audiologist is a clinician who has completed an undergraduate university degree and a two-year master’s degree in audiology.
Australian Hearing clinicians can be audiologists or audiometrists.
An audiometrist is a clinician who has completed a certificate course in hearing assessment, hearing aid fitting and management.
Audiology - a fullfilling career
Specialist audiologist and Clinical Coach at Australian Hearing, Simone Punch has a severe hearing impairment and has worn hearing aids since she was 20 months old. Simone started as a general audiologist but now specialises in paediatric audiology.
“I love working with the kids and their parents” she says of her chosen career. In her current role at Australian Hearing, Simone assists other audiologists, runs training for them and monitors the quality of our services.
She also works closely with early intervention agencies, cochlear implant clinics, itinerant support teachers and other organisations and said,“I teach them more about what we do and work with them to improve our services. Rather than being based at one Australian Hearing Centre, I now travel around our region dealing with lots of people.”
Simone’s exposure to the field of audiology started as a baby and she remembers thinking as a child – as she watched audiologists test her and fit hearing aids – that it would be a boring job. But after completing a Degree in Psychology, and thinking about her future options, her best friend suggested Audiology, “I entered the course and within several months I loved it and knew it was what I wanted to do.”
Both sides of the job appeal to Simone, who finds the mix of counselling families who have had a child diagnosed with a hearing loss; and the scientific and technical side of fulfilling, and said, “it is inspiring to see kids as they grow up and achieve amazing things.”