Audiology technicians create and service hearing aids and hearing protection products. They dispense, fit and provide hearing aids for those who need them.
The duties of an audiology technician include, but are not limited to:
- Maintaining records of audiograms and other patient data
- Providing hearing aid evaluations, fittings, and follow-up care for patients with hearing loss
- Educating patients about various aspects of hearing loss and treatment options
- Administering hearing tests to determine the type and extent of hearing loss in each ear
- Scheduling appointments, taking notes during meetings with patients, and keeping records of patient progress
- Cleaning, repairing, and maintaining instruments used in hearing tests
- Performing diagnostic testing such as acoustic reflex testing to determine the function of the inner ear
- Explaining test results to patients and helping them choose appropriate treatment options
- Providing care to patients with hearing loss related to otolaryngology issues such as infections or tumors
The following job titles also refer to audiology technician:
audiology specialist service technician
hearing aid technician
hearing help technician
audiology specialist technician
hearing aid service technician
hearing instrument specialist
audiology service technician
hearing aid acoustician
Audiology technicians work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, physicians’ offices, and schools. They usually work a regular 40-hour week, although they may be required to work evenings or weekends to accommodate patients’ schedules. They may also be on call to provide emergency services.
Audiology technicians typically work in well-lit, clean, and quiet environments. They may be exposed to infectious diseases and to hazardous materials, such as cleaning solutions and chemicals used to sterilize equipment. They must take precautions to protect themselves from these hazards.
Audiology technicians are typically required to have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in audiology or a related field, such as speech-language pathology or communication science. These programs typically take four years to complete and include coursework in anatomy, physiology, kinesiology, psychology and other related fields.
Audiology technicians receive on-the-job training from their employers. This training may include shadowing an audiologist or audiology technician, performing duties under supervision and practicing with patients until they are comfortable enough to work independently.
ISCO skill level
ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:
- the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
- the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
- the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.
Audiology technician is a Skill level 3 occupation.
Audiology technician career path
These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to audiology technician.
Long term prospects
These occupations require some skills and knowledge of audiology technician. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of audiology technician with a significant experience and/or extensive training.
Essential knowledge and skills
This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of audiology technician.
- Hygiene in a health care setting: The procedures related to maintaining a hygienic environment within a health care setting such as hospitals and clinics. It can range from hand washing to cleaning and disinfection of medical equipment used and infection control methods.
- Health, safety and hygiene legislation: The set of health, safety and hygiene standards and items of legislation applicable in a specific sector.
- Types of audiological equipment: Types and brands of audiological equipment and accessories for audiometers and hearing tests, foam tips, bone conductors, etc.
Essential skills and competences
These skills are necessary for the role of audiology technician.
- Maintain laboratory equipment: Clean laboratory glassware and other equipment after use and inspect it for damage or corrosion in order to ensure its proper functioning.
- Produce impressions for ear moulds: Produce an impression of the ear for an ear mould, also adjusting the mould accordingly.
- Perform technical tasks with great care: Avoiding possible risks and unwanted outcomes by watching carefully over all parts of a machine, device or vehicle and executing processes of production, maintenance or repair with great care.
- Order supplies for audiology services: Order supplies and devices related to hearing aids and similar audiology-related equipment.
- Perform repairs for hearing aids: Perform basic repairs, replacements and adjustments to hearing aids at the customers’ specific request.
- Advise customers on hearing aids: Provide customers with advice on various types of hearing aids and inform customers on how to operate and maintain hearing devices.
- Maintain records of clients’ prescriptions: Keep records of customers’ prescriptions, payments and work orders sent to the laboratory.
Optional knowledge and skills
This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of audiology technician. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Acoustics: The study of sound, its reflection, amplification and absorption in a space.
- Communication related to hearing impairment: The phonologic, morphologic and syntactic aspects and characteristics of human communication for individuals affected by hearing impairment.
- Physiology of hearing: The means by which sounds are transmitted through the outer, middle, inner ear and brain.
- Geriatrics: Geriatrics is a medical specialty mentioned in the EU Directive 2005/36/EC.
- Hearing loss: The manifestation, causes and symptoms of hearing impairment, which is the partial or total inability to hear.
- Human ear: The structure, functions and characteristics of the outer middle and inner ear, through which sounds are transferred from the environment to the brain.
- Hearing aids: The types, characteristics and suppliers of hearing devices which amplify sound for the individual who is wearing it, with the aim of making speech more intelligible, and to correct impaired hearing.
Optional skills and competences
These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of audiology technician. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Contribute to continuity of health care: Contribute to the delivery of coordinated and continuous healthcare.
- Use e-health and mobile health technologies: Use mobile health technologies and e-health (online applications and services) in order to enhance the provided healthcare.
- Ensure proper appointment administration: Set up a proper procedure to manage appointments, including policies related to cancellation and nonappearance.
- Empathise with the healthcare user: Understand the background of clients` and patients’ symptoms, difficulties and behaviour. Be empathetic about their issues; showing respect and reinforcing their autonomy, self-esteem and independence. Demonstrate a concern for their welfare and handle according to the personal boundaries, sensitivities, cultural differences and preferences of the client and patient in mind.
- Prepare patients for assessments: Prepare audiologist patients for assessment and consultation; prepare medical equipment and hearing tests.
- Recommend hearing aids: Recommend hearing aids to suit specific needs or conditions.
- Schedule audiologist appointments: Schedule the appointments for an audiologist’s patients.
- Comply with legislation related to health care: Comply with the regional and national legislation that is relevant to one`s work and apply it in practice.
- Adapt hearing tests: Adapt hearing tests to suit the age and ability of the patient.
- Listen actively: Give attention to what other people say, patiently understand points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times; able to listen carefully the needs of customers, clients, passengers, service users or others, and provide solutions accordingly.
- Assist audiologists with screening: Prepare basic hearing tests and audiological screenings; examine ear canals using an otoscope; provide assistance during more complex audiology tests.
- Refer healthcare users: Make referrals to other professionals, based on the healthcare user’s requirements and needs, especially when recognising that additional healthcare diagnostics or interventions are required.
- Adjust hearing aids: Program hearing aids using a computer, fitting and dispensing hearing aids, or administering cochlear implants, electronic devices used to improve a person`s hearing.
- Use special hearing equipment for tests: Use audiometers and computers to determine the degree of a patient`s hearing disorder and find other factors relating to the problem.
ISCO group and title
3214 – Medical and dental prosthetic technicians
- Audiology technician – ESCO
- Audiology Technician Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More – Climb the Ladder
- Featured image: By James Musallam – https://seasonsmobility.com/blogs/news/hearing-aid, CC BY-SA 4.0