Audiology and speech pathology is the area of study and practice the related to the identification and treatment of hearing and speech disorders in order to assist children and adults. Individuals in this field will perform tests in order to determine the severity and complications of patients, followed by working with parents and other professionals in order to develop a treatment plan in order to remedy problems as much as possible.
Education and Schools
Individuals in this field will typically pursue a doctoral degree in audiology (Au.D), which is a graduate level program which typically takes four years to complete. Audiologists will be exposed to a variety of sciences and areas of study, as well as become familiar with medical problems that may affect hearing or speech in order to better identify and treat such ailment.
A curriculum may include:
- Hearing Problems
- Speech Pathology
As a graduate level program, individuals should seek out programs that allow for specific or targeted education that assists in licensure in the student’s desired state. This is important as such requirements may vary from state to state, and regulations governing the kind of care that may be provided may greatly vary. Some areas may require graduation through an accredited program, which should be taken into consideration when vetting which school one plans to attend.
Job growth is expected to increase greatly over the next decade. Though the growth will be high in percentage, actual number will be smaller due to the relatively small size of the field. Individuals will have greater access to healthcare over the coming decade, and combined with an aging population, should create the need for professionals who provide diagnosis, assistance and treatment over the next decade.
The American Academy of Audiology is the largest professional organization for audiologists in the country, and works to provide protection and protect the interests of its members.
For additional information about audiology and speech pathology, check out our Speech Pathology Career Guide on our blog.