How to become an audiologist?

Find out what the educational requirements are to become an audiologist
Sep, 02, 2021

What is an audiologist?

An audiologist is a health professional who specialises in diagnosing, treating, and managing hearing and balance problems. As hearing and balance problems are sometimes caused by other medical conditions, audiologists can also refer their patients to a specialist, such as an ear, nose and throat surgeon, to receive the appropriate treatment.  

Audiologists are hearing health professionals that help people reconnect with the sounds around them.

What do audiologists do?

Audiologists help people identify whether a person may have a hearing loss and prescribes hearing aids to help them communicate and reconnect with the world around them. Some of their duties include:

  • Performing hearing tests
  • Evaluating hearing loss or vestibular (balance) disorders
  • Prescribing and fitting hearing aids
  • Tinnitus diagnosis and management
  • Conducting rehabilitation techniques such as auditory training and listening skills improvement

What training do audiologists have?

An audiologist must undergo extensive training to become fully qualified. Becoming a certified audiologist involves completing a two-year Master of Audiology degree, followed by one further year of supervised clinical practice. Most trainee audiologists complete their clinical supervision while employed in an audiology clinic. Once complete, the audiologist will receive a Certificate of Clinical Competence provided by the New Zealand Audiological Society (NZAS).

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Audiologist degree requirements

A Master of Audiology (MAud) is required to become an audiologist. This is a two-year university degree that is only offered at the University of Auckland and the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. The entry requirement for this is a Bachelor’s degree. Most, but not all candidates usually have a Bachelor’s degree in health sciences, science or psychology when they apply. 

Most audiologists in New Zealand are also members of the New Zealand Audiological Society (NZAS). NZAS is the professional body for audiologists in New Zealand. All members are required to demonstrate professional competency to become full members and must maintain their clinical competency through ongoing professional development. 

How many years does it take?

It can take about 3-7 years to become an audiologist depending on your personal situation. A full 6 -7 years would include study for a Bachelor’s degree (depending on the requirements of the Bachelors degree), a Master of Audiology (MAud) and clinical training to become fully qualified. If a person already has a relevant Bachelor’s degree and they decide to become an audiologist, they will only need about three years of extra study and training to become a certified audiologist.

Do audiologists go to medical school?

Audiologists must complete a Master of Audiology (MAud), however, they do not need to complete a medical degree.  
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