QMYOU Alumni Magazine Issue 83 - Page 26

University urges Scots to open their ears to hearing loss I N MAY, QMU LAUNCHED a new permanent display showcasing two centuries of hearing aid technology, including an early 20th century ear trumpet, spectacle aid and a 1970s conversation tube. The unique display of 28 devices is not only a celebration of advancements in digital hearing aid technology, it is also helping audiologists at QMU demonstrate how pioneering research is having a positive impact on the lives of those with hearing difficulties and deafness. There are over one million people in Scotland with some degree of hearing loss and an estimated two million people across the UK who use hearing aids. Every year in Scotland around 75 children are born deaf, around five of them with a severe to profound hearing loss. There are also an estimated 3,000 children and young people under 25 with severe to profound hearing loss in Scotland. Experts from the Clinical Audiology, Speech and Language Research Centre at QMU were joined by other researchers and practitioners, including alumni, from across Scotland to help launch the ‘Scottish Hearing Aid Collection’ of over 100 devices. Experts also celebrated a decade of audiology research and education at QMU and discussed the positive impact this pioneering research is having on the lives of those with hearing difficulties and deafness. 28 QMYOU / Development News The Collection offers students and practitioners in audiology and hearing aid dispensing, as well as the wider public, a unique insight into the two centuries of hearing aid technology. It includes examples of some the earliest acoustic devices, non-electrical hearing aids. The Scottish Hearing Aid Collection was donated by Dr Robin Barr-Hamilton, who helped set up the first Audiology programme at QMU. The Collection is also sponsored by the Oticon Foundation, the charitable foundation of hearing aid manufacturer Oticon. Dr Robin Barr-Hamilton, said: “Most of the hearing aids in the collection were passed to me by old colleagues, from Glasgow, Manchester and elsewhere, who could not bear to throw anything away. We are grateful for that inability! My thanks go to Queen Margaret University, and to the sponsor, who have seen the historical value of, and educational potential in, the resource. My hope is that the collection will expand as the