Thursday, June 7, 2012

Education and Training of Audiologists vs Hearing Aid Dealers

We often see confusion among our patients regarding the difference between an Audiologist and hearing aid dealer.  The big difference is in the education and training.  In most states, the minimum education and training is mandated by the state licensing board.  Usually there is big difference between the two.  Ohio is a great example to demonstrate how very different it can be.

In Ohio an established Audiologist needs a masters degree and young people entering Audiology must have a doctoral degree.  Both have 9-12 months of clinical hands on training and must pass a national examination.  The education and training covers all aspects of hearing, hearing loss, hearing aids and much much more.  Clinical training includes months of hands on experience in assessing the ears and hearing, and selecting, fitting and adjusting hearing aids for each individual.  Audiologists are uniquely trained to provide comprehensive hearing, balance and aural rehabilitative services. 
In Ohio hearing aid dealers are also licensed by the state of Ohio to perform measures of hearing in order to fit and sell hearing aids.  They are required to have a minimum of a high school equivalency education and pass a state mandated examination. 
Understanding the training and background of both helps in understanding why the services offered by the two groups are different.  When you notice changes in your hearing we recommend you schedule an appointment for diagnostic audiologic assessment with an Audiologist.  This will provide more complete information about your ears and hearing.
Life sounds great!  Enjoy every moment!
Dr. Jane Kukula, AuD
Paula Webster, MA
Advanced Audiology Concepts
8897 Mentor, Ohio 44060

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