What You Need To Know About the AuD Degree
The scope of practice in audiology has expanded substantially since the 1960s when a master’s degree rather than a bachelor’s degree was required for entry into practice. It has become necessary to increase the academic and clinical training requirements from a master’s degree to a professional doctorate for entry into the profession. Master’s level academic programs no longer exist. They have been replaced by AuD programs. Beginning in 2007, the AuD has become the entry-level degree for the clinical practice of audiology.
AuD Facts at a Glance
- The AuD is the designator for the professional doctorate in the discipline of audiology.
- Completion of the degree typically requires four years of full-time study beyond the bachelor’s degree. An individual should check with the AuD program of their choice to find out the specific prerequisite coursework to be completed at the bachelor’s level.
- Individuals completing this degree are prepared for independent clinical practice in areas of auditory and vestibular assessment and treatment and reimbursement from third-party payers for these services.
- Individuals completing an AuD will be prepared to be leaders of the field and will be competent to interact with other doctoring professions involved in hearing health care.
- Individuals completing an AuD will be critical consumers of research and may choose to participate in clinical research including the evaluation of the efficacy of current diagnostic and treatment strategies.
- Individuals interested in pursuing an independent research program and teaching at the university level, should obtain a PhD, which is considered the entry-level degree for research. It is essential to have well-qualified PhD’s who create the scientific base of a profession. Without a research base, there is no profession to practice. It is important for researchers (PhDs) and clinicians (AuDs) to interact in order to bring science into the clinic and to instruct the scientists in what questions must be answered for excellent clinical practice.
- Master’s level academic programs no longer exist. They have been replaced by AuD programs. Beginning in 2007, the AuD has become the entry-level degree for the clinical practice of audiology.
- In most states, an audiologist must hold a license to legally practice. Individuals completing an AuD program should be prepared to meet the requirements of licensing.
- The first AuD program opened at Baylor University in January of 1994.