Autism Listening Clinic

Because every child deserves the opportunity to listen

 
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For more information or to book an appointment for your child, please provide your details further below.

A child’s ability to clearly hear the voices of parents, caregivers, and teachers is a key component of their learning and development. Listening difficulties are common in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Listening difficulties are thought to contribute to academic underachievement in children with ASD. Children with listening difficulties often struggle to follow directions and pay attention to auditory stimuli such as their teacher's voice. They are often unresponsive and struggle to pay attention to a target speaker. Responsiveness and auditory attention are two of the most significant predictors of educational performance.1

Phonak in partnership with The University of Melbourne continues to research the identification and management of listening difficulties in children with ASD. Our clinics offer an assessment of your child's hearing and listening skills, and evidence-based management options to support listening difficulties when warranted. The program is open to children from the age of four years and appointments will be serviced by our accredited Phonak hearing care partners Australia-wide.

How does the clinic work?

a boy in a classroom
 

An experienced paediatric Audiologist will conduct a thorough assessment of your child’s hearing and listening skills. Once the auditory assessment is complete, management options are recommended based on your child’s performance and presenting concerns.

Recommendations may include a complimentary trial of Phonak remote microphone technology and/or auditory training. If your child is not able to participate in testing, you are still able to book an appointment and potentially trial the Phonak Roger technology.

Please note:
Telehealth sessions are also available if you cannot make it into the clinic.

Click below for more information and frequently asked questions.

 


Enter your details below for more information, or to book an appointment.

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children in a classroom
 

- Nick, 6 years old

"Nick has been using the device and the teacher still says it makes such a difference. He is able to give encouragement, redirection and remain a calm voice as he knows Nick can hear what he is saying. The teacher also says it is a clear indicator of behaviour and frustration change when he takes it out. It provides him seconds worth of warning before they can expect Nick to run out of the classroom. Which after running away 9 times from the classroom mid March to end of April is vital information for safety reasons. Thank you so much for bringing this to the community."

 
 

Remote Microphone Technology

Roger Focus is an easy-to-use listening solution that sends the caregiver's, instructor's, or teacher's voice directly into your child’s ear(s). This approach reduces the negative effects of distracting background noise, distance, and reverberation, allowing your child to process the words of the speaker better. Recent research conducted at The University of Melbourne and University of North Texas has found that speech recognition in noise improved significantly (> 20%) in children with ASD wearing remote-microphone technology (RMT) compared to performance with no technology.4,6 Positive results have been demonstrated across a range of measures including speech perception in noise, listening challenges in the classroom, and listening-related stress.2-6

Auditory Training

The University of North Texas has also evaluated the effects of auditory training on processing ability in children with ASD. Significant improvements were reported following the completion of an auditory training regime in children demonstrating dichotic listening deficits.6

Phonak

We offer a complete range of digital hearing assistive devices, along with complementary wireless communication systems. With more than 70 years of experience and a worldwide presence, we are passionate about creating hearing solutions that change people's lives to thrive socially and emotionally.

 
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The University of Melbourne, Department of Audiology

We are your multidisciplinary team of audiologists and researchers. Together, we aim to provide evidence-based clinical care that is tailored to your needs and delivered in a caring, safe, and welcoming environment. Our services include a dedicated clinic for the management of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

 
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Footnotes

1 Ashburner et al. (2008). Sensory processing and classroom emotional, behavioral, and educational outcomes in children with autism spectrum disorder. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 62, 564–73.
2 Alcántara et al. (2004). Speech-in-noise perception in high-functioning individuals with autism or Asperger’s syndrome. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 45, 1107–14.
3 Rance et al., (2014). The use of listening devices to ameliorate auditory deficit in children with autism. The Journal of Pediatrics, 164(2), 352–57.
4 Rance, G.et al. (2017). Reducing listening-related stress in school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of autism and developmental disorders, 47(7), 2010-2022.
5 Schafer, E. C. et al. (2016). Assistive technology evaluations: Remote-microphone technology for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of communication disorders, 64, 1-17.
6 Schafer et al. (2019). Effects of Auditory Training on Electrophysiological Measures in Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Journal of the American Academy of Audiology, 30(5), 431-43.