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University of the Pacific is launching the first audiology doctorate program in Northern California, which will be housed at the new San Francisco campus.

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Northern California’s first audiology doctoral program launched

Dec 17, 2014

Californians who may have lost some hearing listening to the Grateful Dead at The Fillmore have new assurance that they'll be able to see an audiologist when they need one.

University of the Pacific is launching the first audiology doctorate program in Northern California, one that is expected to educate nearly half of the estimated 55 new audiologists who will be needed each year to keep pace with anticipated statewide demand.

The program will be offered at Pacific's new downtown San Francisco campus at 155 Fifth Street, where the university is also opening new audiology patient clinics. When fully staffed, the state-of-the-art clinics will offer comprehensive diagnostic and rehabilitation services to some 3,500 adults and children each year.

California now has only one other program that grants a doctorate in audiology (Au.D.) degree, a joint program of San Diego State and UC San Diego that turns out about 10 audiologists a year.

"There's a very, very big need," said Rupa Balachandran, audiology program director and professor of audiology in Pacific's Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology. Balachandran expects Pacific's program to confer 22 doctorates in audiology a year when fully enrolled.

Nationwide there were about 13,000 audiology jobs in 2012 - a number that is expected to grow by 4,300, or 34 percent, by 2022, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The demand is fueled by aging baby boomers as well as by youngsters with hearing problems detected through California's eight-year-old Newborn Hearing Screening Program.

Pacific's audiology doctoral program will enroll its first students next fall. An accelerated program, it will educate students in three years compared to the typical four by offering year-round instruction.

Pacific is known for its high-quality accelerated health sciences programs, such as those offered at the Thomas J. Long School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences in Stockton and the Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in San Francisco. The accelerated programs allow students to get into their professions more quickly compared with traditional programs that recess for the summer.

Pacific's Department of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology also operates the Pacific Hearing and Balance Center in the Chan Family Health Sciences Learning Center on the university's Stockton campus. For more information or to apply, visit

About University of the Pacific
Established in 1851 as the first chartered university in California, University of the Pacific prepares students for professional and personal success through rigorous academics, small classes, and a supportive and engaging culture. Widely recognized as one of the most beautiful private university campuses in the West, the Stockton campus offers more than 80 undergraduate majors in arts and sciences, music, business, education, engineering and computer science, and pharmacy, and health sciences. The university's distinctive Northern California footprint also includes campuses in San Francisco and Sacramento. For more information, visit

Media contact:
Claudia Morain | 209.946.2313 office | 209.479.9894 cell |

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