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The Difference Between Audiology and Audiometry

Audiometry and audiology are two fields crucial in ensuring that individuals of all ages can hear the world around them to their fullest potential. 

Audiometry is the science of measuring hearing acuity. It involves a series of tests to evaluate an individual’s hearing levels and ability to discern different sounds.

Audiometry is performed by qualified Audiologists and Audiometrists or may be performed by individuals who may not have Audiologist or Audiometrist qualifications (e.g. front of house staff).  

When there is no qualification, it may be a ‘hearing screening’ rather than proper audiometry and it is important to clarify before undergoing an assessment. 

These tests are not just about identifying how well you can hear; they’re about understanding your hearing capabilities or challenges.

Audiology is the branch of science that deals with the study, diagnosis, and management of hearing loss and balance disorders. 

Audiologists are healthcare professionals who employ various techniques, including audiometry, to assess hearing and prescribe the appropriate treatments or hearing aids.

Understanding the nuances between audiometry and audiology is essential for anyone looking to address their hearing concerns in Perth. 

This article will dive deeper into what each field entails, their importance, and how they contribute to improving your quality of life through better hearing health.


Precision and Personalisation: Audiometry tests offer an understanding of an individual’s hearing levels, allowing for a highly personalised assessment. This precision helps in crafting tailored treatment plans that can address specific hearing issues effectively.
Scope Limitation: While audiometry provides an accurate assessment of hearing levels, it does not diagnose the underlying causes of hearing loss, especially if it is a ‘hearing screening’ provided by someone who is not qualified. It’s a crucial first step but must be followed by professional diagnosis and treatment planning by a qualified Audiologist or Audiometrist.
Early Detection: Regular audiometric testing can catch hearing loss at its onset, facilitating interventions that could prevent further deterioration. This is particularly beneficial for occupational settings where noise-induced hearing loss is a risk.
Accessibility and Awareness: Despite its importance, access to audiometric testing can sometimes be limited by factors such as location, availability of specialised services, and public awareness about the importance of regular hearing assessments.
Funding: Medicare rebates are not available for audiometry that is not performed by a qualified Audiologist.


Comprehensive Care: Audiologists offer a wide range of services beyond hearing tests, including diagnosing the causes of hearing loss, prescribing treatments, and fitting hearing aids. Their expertise covers the full spectrum of auditory and balance issues, ensuring a holistic approach to ear health.
Perceived Barriers: Some individuals may hesitate to consult with an audiologist due to perceived barriers such as cost, the stigma associated with hearing aids, or the belief that hearing loss is an unavoidable aspect of ageing.
Customised Treatment and Support: With their in-depth knowledge, audiologists can provide customised treatment options tailored to an individual’s specific needs, including the selection of hearing aids, therapy for tinnitus, and strategies for hearing preservation.
Finding the Right Fit: The success of audiological treatments, especially hearing aids, relies heavily on the patient’s commitment to adjustment and ongoing maintenance. This process can be daunting for some, requiring time and patience to find the right solution.
Medicare Rebates: Available to clients who have a referral from their GP or other medical practitioner. Clients must see a qualified Audiologist to obtain a medicare rebate.

While audiometry acts as the gateway to understanding one’s hearing levels, audiology delves deeper, offering comprehensive solutions and support. Together, they form a dynamic duo in the quest for better hearing, each with its strengths and limitations.

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Audiometry and Audiology: Side-by-Side Comparison

When considering the paths of audiometry and audiology for managing hearing health, various factors come into play. 

These include: 

  • Efficiency in identifying and treating hearing issues
  • Cost of assessments and treatments
  • Durability and lifespan of hearing solutions
  • Aesthetic considerations for hearing aids
Comparison Factor
Focuses on quick and precise hearing assessments to identify the level of hearing loss.
Provides a thorough evaluation of hearing health, identifying specific issues and creating a comprehensive treatment plan.
Generally lower upfront costs for tests. However, costs can vary based on the specific services and tests performed. May be marketed as a ‘free hearing test’ however only a ‘hearing screening’ is being offered where underlying causes may not be identified.
Higher initial costs due to comprehensive diagnostics, treatment planning, and potential hearing aid fitting. Ongoing support may also contribute to higher overall costs.
Durability and Lifespan
Not applicable as audiometry involves assessment rather than the provision of physical products.
Focuses on long-term solutions, including durable hearing aids designed to last several years, depending on the model and care taken. Also includes ongoing rehabilitation and the inclusion of family members, focusing on a patient- or family-centred approach.
Not applicable as audiometry does not involve devices or aids.
Offers a range of hearing aid designs, from invisible in-ear models to stylish over-the-ear devices, catering to personal preferences and needs.
Widely accessible through clinics and sometimes mobile services for workplace or school screenings.
Accessibility depends on the availability of audiologists and clinics equipped for comprehensive care. Waiting times can vary.
High level of personalisation in test settings to accurately gauge hearing abilities.
Extends personalisation beyond testing to include treatment options tailored to lifestyle, preferences, and specific hearing needs.

Deciding What’s Best for You

In choosing between audiometry and audiology, consider what aspect of hearing health you’re addressing. 

If you need a general idea of where your hearing is at, a hearing screening or audiometry offers a straightforward and efficient approach.

For comprehensive hearing healthcare that includes diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing support, audiology is a clear choice, despite potentially higher costs and the need for commitment to treatment plans.

The decision ultimately depends on your specific needs, preferences, and priorities. 

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Choosing Between Audiometry and Audiology for Your Situation

When it comes to addressing your hearing health needs, the suitability of audiometry or audiology can vary depending on the specific circumstances and requirements of the individual. Let’s explore different scenarios to determine which option might be better suited for each situation:

Scenario 1: Routine Hearing Check-up where no hearing loss is suspected

  • Better Choice: Audiometry
  • For individuals seeking routine check-ups or basic hearing assessments without specific concerns or symptoms, audiometry offers a quick and efficient solution. These tests can be conducted at various clinics or even as part of workplace or school screenings, making them convenient for regular monitoring of hearing health.

Scenario 2: Suspected Hearing Loss or Balance Issues

  • Better Choice: Audiology
  • If you suspect hearing loss or balance issues, or if you’ve noticed symptoms such as ringing in the ears (tinnitus) or vertigo, audiology is the preferred option. Audiologists are equipped to conduct comprehensive evaluations, including diagnostic tests beyond audiometry, to identify the root cause of your symptoms and recommend appropriate treatments. Appropriate referrals to other medical practitioners can also be made.

Scenario 3: Need for Hearing Aid Fitting and Ongoing Support

  • Better Choice: Audiology
  • When it comes to fitting hearing aids or other auditory devices, audiology shines. Audiologists not only assess your hearing needs but also provide personalised recommendations for hearing aids, assistive listening devices, and ongoing support, ensuring optimal performance and comfort with your devices over time.

Scenario 4: Occupational or Environmental Noise Exposure

  • Better Choice: Both
  • In scenarios where individuals are exposed to occupational or environmental noise hazards, both audiometry and audiology play crucial roles. Audiometry can help in monitoring hearing health and identifying early signs of noise-induced hearing loss, while audiology can provide guidance on protective measures and interventions to mitigate further damage.
By considering the specific circumstances and requirements of your situation, you can determine whether audiometry or audiology is the better choice for addressing your hearing health needs. Signs You Need a Hearing Test (Plus What to Expect)

Take the Next Step with Hearing & Audiology

Ready to take charge of your hearing health journey? 

Let Hearing & Audiology guide you towards the right path. 

Our team of experienced audiologists is here to offer personalised advice, comprehensive assessments, and tailored solutions to meet your unique needs. 

Contact us today for more information. Or, make a booking online at one of our five convenient locations throughout Perth.

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