Two of the focus areas of HearCom are the identification and characterization of auditory communication limitations and the development of standardized testing and evaluation procedures for hearing impaired persons. In this context, the Auditory Profile has been defined as a “complete” and non-redundant set of diagnostic procedures for the characterization of the major aspects of hearing deficiencies:
The aim of the auditory profile is that it should be used as a diagnostic tool, for use in a (specialized) hearing centre or clinic or in audiological research, for a broad population of subjects with complaints about their performance in (auditory) communication tasks. The end user of the auditory profile is the professional interested in the characteristics of the hearing of a particular client/patient. The Auditory Profile characterizes the individual’s auditory impairment profile in a comparable way across Europe, and so extends and unifies hearing care in Europe. In addition, it can help to determine the benefit from assistive devices. A basic set of tests in the Auditory Profile are intended to be performed for every patient, while other tests can be thought of as additional tests that can clarify issues that arise during basic testing.
One of the advantages of the Auditory Profile is that all test procedures are available as modules of a single software package, thus providing the same look and feel for all tests and enabling the storage and analysis of test results within one single database. The test procedures included in the Auditory Profile are listed and described in the section Test procedures. The software and all modules are described in detail in the section Software and downloads.