January 25, 2007

Purdue audiology group offers hearing test for Indiana legislators

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — The Purdue Audiology Student Organization will visit the Statehouse in Indianapolis on Tuesday (Jan. 30) to offer hearing screenings to the 150 members of the Indiana General Assembly.

"Hearing loss can be stressful, and hearing is important for legislators, who spend a good part of their time in meetings and listening to constituents," said Robert E. Novak, interim head of Purdue's Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences.

"We hope that in the process of providing this screening to the legislators and helping them better understand their own hearing abilities that we can also help them understand how hearing loss can affect Indiana residents across the life span, infants through older adults, and their families."

Novak said the audiology doctoral and undergraduate students will offer hearing screening tests, otoscopic evaluations, suggest referrals as needed and will be available to answer questions throughout the day.

He said the idea to offer the screening developed from conversations he had with Rep. Sheila Klinker, D-Lafayette, who serves on the department's advisory board.

Novak said he offered hearing tests to legislators last year and received a good response.

"I performed the tests last year by myself, and the legislators who participated seemed to very much appreciate that Purdue was bringing this service to the Statehouse," he said. "I decided this year to involve students in the project because it is a great opportunity for them to be engaged in the community and interact one on one with our state legislators."

Purdue's Department of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences is housed in the College of Liberal Arts.

Writer: Kim Medaris, (765) 494-6998, kmedaris@purdue.edu

Sources: Robert E. Novak, (765) 494-1534, novakr@purdue.edu

Kim Chamberlain, president of the Purdue Audiology Student Organization and audiology doctoral student, chamberk@purdue.edu

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; purduenews@purdue.edu


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