Audiology Technician Careers: Job Description & Salary Info

About this article
Learn about an audiology technician's job description, salary and education and training requirements. Get straight talk about the pros and cons of an audiology technician career.
View available schools

Pros and Cons of an Audiology Technician Career

With good job prospects, no formal education requirements and the chance to help people improve their hearing, being an audiology technician could be a rewarding and secure career. Here are some of the pros and cons of an audiology technician career:

Pros of an Audiology Technician Career
Projected job growth faster than average (16% for health technicians and 27% for hearing aid specialists from 2014-2024)*
May not need a college degree ***
Help people preserve their hearing **
Opportunity to use varied skills **

Cons of an Audiology Technician Career
Lower salary than national average (about $45,620 for health technicians vs. $47,230 national average in 2014)*
No standardized training ***
Job duties/training may be limited by supervising audiologist **
Possible exposure to infectious diseases **

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **USAJobs, ***The Hearing Journal, January, 2012.

Essential Career Info

Duties and Job Descriptions

Audiology technicians, also called audiology assistants, health technicians in audiology or hearing aid specialists, generally work under the supervision of a licensed audiologist, helping with patient care and office management. Duties vary according to state regulations and individual supervisors, but diagnostic tasks and amplification tasks are the general categories. Diagnostic tasks may include doing basic hearing tests and examining the ear canal using an otoscope, as well as assisting with more complex tests done by the audiologist. In some jobs, you may be required to clean out patients' ear canals before tests or hearing aid fittings; with these duties, you'd be responsible for taking proper precautions to prevent the spread of infection.

Amplification tasks involve helping people with their hearing aids. You may discuss the types of devices available and teach patients how to use them. You might make molds for hearing aids. Other duties may include cleaning hearing aids, checking their function, and doing basic repairs if there are problems. Administrative duties might consist of filling out paperwork or using a computer to document patient information.

Job Prospects and Salary

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) includes audiology technicians in the general category of health technicians and technologists. It reported that, in 2014, the mean annual salary for this group was around $45,620 , while hearing aid specialists had an average salary of $47,820 (www.bls.gov). Projected job growth for health technicians is 16% during the 2014-2024 decade, and growth for hearing aid specialists is expected to be 27% in the same decade. Both of these are faster than the average for all occupations.

Career Skills and Requirements

There are no specific educational requirements for being an audiology technician, and only a few schools offer programs specifically for this job. However, the American Academy of Audiology recommends that candidates have at least a high school diploma or GED before being hired and trained by an audiologist (www.audiology.org). Beyond this level, the Academy defers to state regulations, which may include registration, certification or licensure. Some audiology technicians, like those working for the federal government or in certain states, must have an associate's or bachelor's degree.

Job Postings from Real Employers

Employers want audiology technicians who can help make their businesses run more efficiently, leaving the audiologist time to do higher-level tasks and patient care. Good communication and relationship skills, as well as the ability to work independently, are important. Here are a few of the job postings available in May 2012:

  • The U.S. Army base in Hawaii wanted to hire a health technologist in audiology to help soldiers meet hearing requirements for deployment. Duties included checking patients in, performing hearing tests and examining ear canals. A bachelor's degree with 24 hours of audiology education was required, as was certification in three months from the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation.
  • A children's hospital in Pennsylvania sought an audiology technician to maintain and calibrate audiology equipment, keep track of supplies and record medical information. An associate's degree was required, along with good communication and social skills.
  • A children's clinic in Florida looked for an audiology technician, preferably with experience in pediatrics. Responsibilities included programming hearing devices, cleaning test equipment and ordering supplies. Experience with spreadsheets and word processing was required.
  • The Veteran's Administration wanted an audiology technician for a clinic in Texas. Major tasks were cleaning ear wax from patients' ears and making ear molds for hearing aids, as well as scheduling appointments. Requirements included one year of related experience or six months of related graduate-level education, plus U.S. citizenship.

How Can I Stand Out?

Increasing your knowledge about audiology is one of the ways you can stand out among your peers. Read professional articles to keep abreast of new developments in audiology and the developing role of audiology technicians. Consider going to audiology conferences or joining a professional organization. If you're in Massachusetts, for instance, you could become a member of the Massachusetts Speech Language Hearing Association.

Although most audiology technician jobs don't require a college degree, the U.S. News University Directory suggests that a bachelor's degree in audiology, or in a related field such as speech and hearing science, could help you enter the profession, as well as being a good starting point if you decide to become an audiologist (www.usnewsuniversitydirectory.com). If you're in the service, you might be able to take the health technology-audiology training program offered by the military.

Alternative Career Paths

Certified Audiometric Technician

If you enjoy audiology technology, you might become a certified audiometric technician, also called a hearing conservationist, and conduct hearing tests, interpret audiograms and diagnose hearing disorders. Audiometric tests can be part of occupational safety requirements, but they are done on people of all ages, including infants. Educational requirements range from a high school diploma to a bachelor's degree; certification rules vary by state. Certified audiometric technicians are in the same BLS category as audiology technicians, earning a mean salary of around $42,000 in 2011 and looking at job growth of up to 28% from 2010-2020.

Audiologist

If you like audiology and can continue your education, you could decide to become an audiologist, diagnosing and treating ear problems such as hearing and balance difficulties. Audiologists work in a wide variety of settings, including doctor offices, audiology clinics, schools and hospitals. Following your undergraduate schooling, you'd need to earn a Doctor of Audiology (Au.D.) degree and become licensed. According to the BLS, in 2011 the mean annual wage for audiologists was $71,000, and a very favorable job growth rate of 37% was predicted during the 2010-2020 decade.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Purdue University Global

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MS in Nursing
      • Master of Healthcare Admin
    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor: Health Science
      • Bachelor: Healthcare Admin
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Grand Canyon University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Special Education
      • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Health Care Administration
    Master's
      • M.Ed. in Special Education: Cross-Categorical
      • M.Ed. in Master of Education in Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education-ITL
      • M.Ed. in Master of Education in Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education-NITL
      • MBA: Health Systems Management
      • MS in Health Care Administration
    Bachelor's
      • BS in Elementary Education / Special Education (Dual Major)
      • BS in Health Sciences: Professional Development & Advanced Patient Care
      • Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Health Science
      • BS in Health Care Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    3. The George Washington University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Masters in Interdisciplinary Secondary Transition Services
      • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
  • Online Programs Available
    4. Regent University

    Program Options

    Doctorate
      • Doctor of Education - Special Education
      • Ph.D. in Education - Special Education
      • Ed.S. in Educational Leadership - Special Education
      • Doctor of Strategic Leadership - Healthcare Leadership
    Master's
      • M.Ed. - Individualized Degree Program - NILD Educational Therapy
      • M.Ed. in K-12 Special Education - General Curriculum Licensure
      • M.Ed. in K-12 Special Education - Non-Licensure
      • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership - Healthcare Management
      • Master of Business Administration - Healthcare Management
  • Online Programs Available
    5. Herzing University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MBA Dual Concentration: Healthcare Management and Public Safety Leadership
    Associate's
      • Associate of Science - Medical Assisting Services
    Certificate
      • Diploma: Medical Assisting
  • Online Programs Available
    6. Colorado Christian University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Special Education, M.Ed.-Emphasis in Alternative Licensing
      • Special Education, M.Ed.-Endorsement in Special Education Generalist
    Bachelor's
      • Special Education, B.A. without Licensure
      • Special Education, M. Ed. without Licensure
  • Online Programs Available
    7. Northcentral University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MS - Organizational Leadership: Health Care Administration
    Certificate
      • Education Specialist - Special Education
  • Online Programs Available
    8. Abilene Christian University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MBA - Healthcare Administration
      • Master of Science in Management - Healthcare Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    9. University of the Southwest

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MBA Healthcare Administration
  • Online Programs Available
    10. Purdue University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science in Education in Special Education

Featured Schools

Purdue University Global

  • MS in Nursing
  • Master of Healthcare Admin
  • Bachelor: Health Science
  • Bachelor: Healthcare Admin

Which subject are you interested in?

Grand Canyon University

  • EdD in Organizational Leadership - Special Education
  • M.Ed. in Special Education: Cross-Categorical
  • BS in Elementary Education / Special Education (Dual Major)

What is your highest level of education?

The George Washington University

  • Masters in Interdisciplinary Secondary Transition Services
  • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners

What is your highest level of education?

Regent University

  • Doctor of Education - Special Education
  • Ph.D. in Education - Special Education
  • M.Ed. - Individualized Degree Program - NILD Educational Therapy
  • M.Ed. in K-12 Special Education - General Curriculum Licensure

What is your highest level of education completed?

Herzing University

  • MBA Dual Concentration: Healthcare Management and Public Safety Leadership
  • Associate of Science - Medical Assisting Services
  • Diploma: Medical Assisting

What is your highest level of education?

Colorado Christian University

  • Special Education, M.Ed.-Emphasis in Alternative Licensing
  • Special Education, M.Ed.-Endorsement in Special Education Generalist
  • Special Education, B.A. without Licensure
  • Special Education, M. Ed. without Licensure

What is your highest level of education completed?

Northcentral University

  • MS - Organizational Leadership: Health Care Administration
  • Education Specialist - Special Education

What is your highest level of education?

Abilene Christian University

  • MBA - Healthcare Administration
  • Master of Science in Management - Healthcare Administration

What is your highest level of education completed?