What is an Audiologist?

The Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology Act, 1991 (ASLPA) provides a description of the scope of practice for audiology in Ontario as follows: “The practice of audiology is the assessment of auditory function and the treatment and prevention of auditory dysfunction to develop, maintain, rehabilitate or augment auditory and communicative functions.”

Audiologists are concerned with the prevention, identification, assessment, treatment and (re)habilitation of auditory and balance difficulties in children and adults. Audiologists also provide education and counseling services for people experiencing problems in these areas.

An audiologist’s scope of clinical practice includes the provision of assessment, treatment, (re)habilitation and consultation services for:

  • Auditory Function

  • Vestibular Function

  • Tinnitus

  • Auditory Processing disorders

  • Cerumen Management

  • Prescription and dispensing of hearing aids, cochlear and middle ear implants, as well as assistive listening and alerting devices

Audiologists are also authorized by the Health Care Consent Act, 1996 (HCCA), to be evaluators of capacity to consent to treatment, admission to care facilities and personal assistance service.

In Ontario, only audiologists and physicians are authorized to prescribe hearing aids. Audiologists assess hearing, prescribe and fit hearing aids and other assistive listening devices and provide training for their use. Many audiologists also dispense hearing aids.

They are committed to the prevention of hearing loss through hearing conservation programs and public awareness initiatives.