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PHYL5501 Audiological Instrumentation

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
This unit provides a comprehensive coverage of the physical principles of sound generation and audiological measurements. Topics covered include; the physics of sound, waves and their time-domain and frequency-domain analysis, Fourier or spectral analysis, decibel scales, sound pressure measurements, microphones, loudspeakers, headphones, frequency response and sound pressure calibration, noise measurement, weighting scales and band analysis, equal loudness contours, physics of sound source localisation, basic architectural acoustics, echo and reverberation, basic electronics, sampling, quantisation and aliasing, digital filtering, complex signal processing, basic audiometer design, noise analysis, evoked response and otoacoustic emission technology, and foundations of hearing aid design and implant technology.
Students are able to (1) explain the principles of sound generation and propagation, its detection and measurement by microphones, its amplification and modification through amplifiers/filters and software, and its reproduction through speakers and headphones; (2) synthesise, measure, manipulate and generate sounds and similar time waveforms using current computer software, and understand the pitfalls in these processes; (3) explain key issues in evoked response testing of ears and architectural acoustics; and (4) explain the principles of noise measurement and sound treatment, room acoustics and sound proof rooms..
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) in-term tests and (2) theory examination at the end of semester. Further information is available in the unit outline.

To pass this unit, a student must: (a) achieve an overall mark of 50 per cent or higher for the unit; and (b) achieve the requisite requirements(s) or a mark of 50 per cent or greater, whichever is higher and specified in the unit outline, for the in-term tests and theory examination at the end of semester components.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Associate Professor Helmy Mulders
Unit rules
enrolment in the Master of Clinical Audiology (90540) or the combined Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Clinical Audiology (00840) or the Master of Audiological Sciences (73560)
for students enrolled in the Master of Clinical Audiology (90540) or the combined Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Clinical Audiology (00840): PHYL5502 Basic Clinical Audiology Part 1 and PHYL5510 Physiology of the Auditory System and PHYL5515 Hearing Devices and Adult Aural Rehabilitation for students enrolled in the Master of Audiological Sciences (73560): PHYL5510 Physiology of the Auditory System and PHYL5503 Professional and Scientific Communication and PHYL5504 Basic Adult Hearing Assessment
Advisable prior study:
Some physics and mathematics is strongly recommended
Contact hours
equivalent to a 1-hour lecture plus a 3-hour lab class per week, but delivered in an intensive 5-week courses, followed by two weeks of workshops prior to clinical placements in Feb-May

Unit notebooks and laboratory manuals are produced for the unit.

  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.