Help your child
with Autism to listen

Because every child deserves the opportunity to listen

Auditory processing difficulties are thought to contribute to academic underachievement in children with ASD. Children are often unresponsive and struggle to pay attention to auditory stimuli such as the teacher’s voice. Responsiveness and auditory attention are two of the most significant predictors of educational performance.1

Request your trial at The University of Melbourne Listening Clinic for children with ASD 

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Erin Schafer, PhD, Professor, Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, University of North Texas
“Parents and teachers of children diagnosed with ASD report significantly improved speech understanding and communication at home, at school, and in many everyday environments when using the Roger Focus device.”
Erin Schafer, PhD, Professor, Department of Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology, University of North Texas. Personal Communication, April 18, 2019.
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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.

Research has shown that children with ASD find it particularly difficult to listen effectively in noisy environments like classrooms.2-6 Studies report that using a wireless listening device can effectively address these listening difficulties.3-6 It is speculated that addressing speech-in-noise deficits may mitigate other symptoms (e.g., inattention, hyperactivity, oppositional behaviour, anxiety and abnormal sound tolerance), but more research is needed. 

Remote microphone technology

Remote microphone technology
Roger Focus is an easy-to-use listening solution that sends the parent’s or teacher’s voice directly into your child’s ear(s). This approach cuts out distracting noise, like nearby conversations or movements of people or chairs, allowing your child to hear 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

How does the clinic work?

The clinic offers 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 family 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 fill in your details above if you would like to find out more, or to book an appointment

“The Phonak has really helped me through grade 6 and into high school. Ever since I trialled the Phonak it's helped me so much with my troubles of background noise. I can focus more on what my teacher is saying rather than a whole bunch of noise. It's helped with tennis lessons too. I can hear the coach really clear and he doesn't have to repeat himself as often. I would definitely recommend this amazing technology”
Ethan McLean, aged 13
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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.

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. 

University of Melbourne

Audiology and Autism

Help your child with Autism to listen

A child’s ability to clearly hear the voices of parents, caregivers, and teachers is a key component of his or her learning and development. Functional listening challenges (auditory processing difficulties) are common in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Auditory processing skills in children with ASD can range from completely normal to substantially defective, but overall are generally poorer compared to typically developing children.
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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 completion of an auditory training regime in children demonstrating dichotic listening deficits.6