Different Types of Hearing Test

There are different types of hearing tests that help hearing health professionals get a complete picture of your hearing. By performing different tests appropriate for the individual, a hearing specialist is able to better understand the nature of your hearing loss and make the best treatment recommendation.


When most people think of having a hearing test they likely think of the type of test called an audiometer test, which is the most common type. During audiometry, a person wears headphones while sitting in a soundproof booth. The hearing care provider uses an audiometer to produce a range of tones at specific frequencies and intensities to measure the ear’s sensitivity to sound. The person signals when they hear the sound by pushing a button or raising a hand. The results are plotted as points on a graph or audiogram, to see the frequencies that weren’t heard and the degree of hearing loss.

Weber or Rinne Test

The Rinne and Weber Tests determine if the hearing loss is a conductive or sensorineural hearing loss. Conductive hearing loss relates to sound waves not being able to pass through the inner ear, while sensorineural is due to damaged auditory nerves or hair cells in the inner ear. They both use a tuning fork to see how one responds to vibrations and sounds near the ears.


Tympanometry measures the movement of the eardrum and the pressure behind the eardrum. During the test, a small plastic plug is put in your ear while a machine carefully changes the pressure in your ear canal. The results are graphed on a report called a tympanogram.

Acoustic reflex test

Acoustic reflex testing measures the reflexes in the eardrum in response to sound. This test is helpful to measure hearing loss in individuals who are unable to respond accurately to other common hearing tests. The test is performed similar to tympanometry, but with the use of sound to see if the muscles in the middle ear contract.

Speech Repetition Test

During a speech repetition test the patient repeats words to the audiologist.

Hearing in Noise Test or HINT

This functional test assess one’s ability to hear speech in environments that are both noisy and quiet. During a HINT test, the patient is asked to repeat short, simple sentences and uses both ears simultaneously to hear the tester give the sentences that are to be repeated.

Sandia Hearing Center performs quality hearing tests to get a complete picture of your hearing so we can provide the best care. Call us, today, at 719-634-6260.