Students can make big impact on people's lives on refreshed Audiology course

It’s a course boasting 100 per cent employability that can help graduates change lives – and the Healthcare Science (Audiology) degree is now open for 2018 applications.

Placements earlier in the programme and spending the final term back in the classroom with access to all campus resources are among the changes being introduced for the next intake at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).

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Programme leader Sara Coulson said the improvements will have both academic and social benefits and are all based on feedback from students.

She said: “Now students will do academic modules in the first term of the second year and then go on placement. They will be back together for the third term of their final year when they will do their remaining academic modules and can concentrate on their dissertation.

“We have also worked with placement providers to introduce around 7.5 hours a week of study time while on their 40-week placement.”

Students on the DMU course will also benefit from opportunities offered by the wider university, such as the Leicester Balance Course and #DMUglobal trips. Previously, students have led screening clinics in India, provided hearing tests at the Special Olympics and attended an audiology conference in Vancouver.

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Mrs Coulson said that because of the ageing population, the skills learnt on the DMU course have never been in greater demand.

“It is an area that is growing and has a huge impact on quality of life. Hearing loss can lead to conditions such as depression, isolation and affect the ability to work.

“In studies in the UK and Europe, it is estimated that every £1 invested in hearing rehabilitation has £10 of received benefit – for example someone not needing treatment for a mental health issue.”

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Third-year student Banshri Khetia is getting a lot out of the course, which saw 100 per cent of students in work or further study within six months of graduating according to the 2015/16 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education report.

The Leicester-based 21-year-old has always wanted to work in the healthcare sector and DMU’s degree stood out because of the practical elements.

“I felt it would suit me very well, as I learn best hands-on,” said Banshri, who was aware of the benefits audiology can bring, having attended appointments with her grandma who uses a hearing aid.

Banshri enjoyed a taste of life as an audiologist during a two-week placement in Kettering at the end of her first year.

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“I got to understand basic concepts and saw what a typical day would be like after graduating,” she said.

“At the end of my second year I went on a #DMUglobal trip to Berlin and spoke to some leading researchers about tinnitus.

“I’ve also volunteered for a balance course at DMU this year, where professionals from around the country get together to share the latest techniques and tips on helping with diagnosis.

“Currently, I’m on placement at Scarborough General Hospital, which is allowing me to develop my practical skills in clinic and gain more confidence with patient contact.

“I think being outside of Leicester has been a nice experience - just a change of environment and being 10 minutes away from the seaside is amazing!

“DMU is really good in the sense that we learn the things we’ll be doing after we graduate, but from the lectures and extra activities I also have experience of areas I could specialise in.”

Posted on Wednesday 25th October 2017

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