Thesis Title

Survey of Hearing Screeners: Training and Protocols Used in Two School Systems in Missouri


Laurel Imhoff

Date of Graduation

Summer 2006


Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Committee Chair

Cynthia McCormick


The purpose of the present study was to compare the training and protocols of two groups of elementary school hearing screeners in the state of Missouri. Previous studies have shown that hearing screening protocols lack uniformity, even within a single school district. The first group of screeners consisted of 18 elementary school nurses who had no direct interaction with an educational audiologist. The second group consisted of 17 contractual screeners who had direct training and supervision from an educational audiologist. The participants were asked to complete a survey concerning their training, the screening protocols they used, and their opinions on minimal hearing loss (MHL). The present study showed that the school nurses, who worked in a school system with no common source of training or supervision, exhibited a greater variation in the hearing screening protocols. The contractual screeners, who were all trained and supervised by the same educational audiologist, used a more uniform hearing screening protocol. The school nurses, however, had a slightly better understanding of MHL than the contractual screeners. Many of the contractual screeners chose not to respond to the MHL survey items because they did not feel qualified to give their opinions. The present study showed that a single supervisor, preferably an educational audiologist, could result in a more uniform screening protocol. In addition, the study showed that hearing screeners need more training on the impact of hearing loss on elementary school students.


elementary school hearing screening, hearing screening protocols, minimal hearing loss, education audiology, survey-based research

Subject Categories

Communication Sciences and Disorders


© Laurel Imhoff