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How to Become an Audiologist: Education, Licensing & Certification

Read about audiology schools and careers, including job description and salary information.

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Home » Specialties » Audiologist

The Basics

  • What you’ll do: Once you’ve decided to become an audiologist, you’ll diagnose and treat patients suffering from hearing, central auditory processing, and balance disorders. Working with patients of all ages, you’ll measure hearing ability and function; provide aural rehabilitation to reduce the effects of hearing loss on communication, learning and job performance; fit for hearing aids; and conduct research.
  • Where you’ll work: Hospitals and rehabilitation centers, private practice, audiology clinics, and schools
  • Degree you’ll need: Doctoral degree and state licensing
  • Median annual salary: $81,030

Education to Become an Audiologist

New audiologists must earn a doctorate in order to begin practicing. The doctoral degree in audiology (AudD) is a four-year graduate program that you can enter while having a bachelor’s degree in any field.

Some audiology programs, like the one at the University of Washington, allow you to specialize in an area of interest, such as pediatric, geriatric, or educational audiology. Your coursework will be more specialized accordingly.

Audiologist Coursework

Anatomy and Physiology: Peripheral Hearing

Psycho-acoustics

Signals, Systems & Acoustics for the Communication Sciences

Biological Foundations of Speech & Music

Amplification

Clinical Practice and Practicum

Typically, your first year or two will include observations, clinical orientation, a written qualifying exam, and a practical assessment. Your third and/or fourth year will offer more hands-on experience through your externship, internship or other Capstone style intensive project.

Salaries by State

Take a look at median annual wages for audiologists by state, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Audiologists

National data

Median Salary: $81,030

Bottom 10%: $56,550

Top 10%: $128,160

Projected job growth: 13.3%

State data

State Median Salary Bottom 10% Top 10%
Alabama $67,700 $53,260 $100,400
Alaska $80,640 $56,570 $123,660
Arizona $80,210 $54,810 $137,350
Arkansas N/A N/A N/A
California $116,220 $74,980 $148,240
Colorado $82,330 $49,520 $115,620
Connecticut $79,590 $57,450 $100,830
Delaware $81,970 $62,860 $102,390
District of Columbia $87,300 $65,430 $153,140
Florida $72,760 $44,220 $103,690
Georgia $80,110 $67,940 $127,990
Hawaii N/A N/A N/A
Idaho $75,110 $48,490 $100,210
Illinois $77,520 $53,770 $109,900
Indiana $79,310 $47,950 $104,080
Iowa $77,600 $53,750 $102,770
Kansas $71,370 $33,780 $95,930
Kentucky $68,750 $55,060 $90,010
Louisiana $71,660 $54,970 $88,200
Maine $77,060 $55,960 $103,210
Maryland $105,700 $69,630 $146,670
Massachusetts $90,410 $68,590 $124,610
Michigan $80,300 $68,040 $102,670
Minnesota $90,520 $69,550 $112,260
Mississippi $59,590 $44,230 $95,070
Missouri $74,120 $55,730 $89,050
Montana $78,550 $43,180 $159,530
Nebraska $83,700 $57,480 $116,100
New Hampshire $67,220 $54,730 $96,860
New Jersey $81,630 $63,990 $126,980
New Mexico $74,730 $54,790 $102,640
New York $81,060 $66,950 $117,910
North Carolina $73,770 $55,070 $98,440
North Dakota $95,420 $67,530 N/A
Ohio $72,500 $55,350 $97,840
Oklahoma $88,930 $55,050 $132,600
Oregon $85,770 $30,280 $181,380
Pennsylvania $76,890 $57,180 $117,460
Rhode Island $89,510 $72,350 $108,800
South Carolina $80,220 $57,090 $131,820
South Dakota $77,620 $67,260 $112,850
Tennessee $82,680 $58,150 $120,590
Texas $89,170 $65,820 $123,580
Utah N/A N/A N/A
Virginia $83,230 $43,230 $134,440
Washington $93,080 $68,780 $142,530
West Virginia $67,410 $48,700 $145,520
Wisconsin $81,420 $57,390 $113,650
Wyoming $76,960 $67,990 $95,140

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 2020 median salary; projected job growth through 2029. Actual salaries vary depending on location, level of education, years of experience, work environment, and other factors. Salaries may differ even more for those who are self-employed or work part time.

Licensing and Certification

All states now require licensing for audiologists in addition to a doctorate. Most also require continuing education units to renew your license. You’ll also need to meet the following criteria:

  • Complete 300 to 375 hours of supervised clinical experience
  • Earn a passing score on a national exam
  • Complete nine months of post-graduate professional clinical experience

For specific requirements, check with the state’s licensing board for audiologists, in the state you choose to work in.

Audiologists can earn the Certificate of Clinical Competence in Audiology (CCC-A), offered by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.They also may be credentialed through the American Board of Audiology. Although it is not required, certification may satisfy some or all of the requirements for licensure and may be required by some employers.

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2020 Occupational Employment Statistics, Audiologists.