Studies & Degrees in Ear, Nose and Throat
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The medical field concerning the bodily areas of the ear, nose and throat is referred to as ENT, head-and-neck surgery or otolaryngology. This study equips students to perform surgery on these areas of the human body, or to act as physicians in patient services. It revolves around the diagnosis and treatment of various ear, nose and throat disorders and diseases.
The field of ENT is a strictly medical profession, and a thorough course of study is only available through a post-secondary school (colleges, universities, technical institutions, medical schools). Majors in ENT or otolaryngology are becoming increasingly common, and can be achieved at a bachelor, master or doctorate degree level – though it is more likely that this course is offered at a master’s or doctorate level. Due to the surgical training and education required, most candidates achieve a bachelor’s in a related area, studying ENT at a higher level.
Some schools will not offer a unified course in ENT. This means students may have to study in related fields, such as audiology or laryngology. It is also important to note that a field of study in ENT will require internships, lab work, clinical experience and a residency before completion. Few online programs exist in this field, and far fewer that would provide certification.
Skills, Qualifications, and Prerequisites for Studies in Ear, Nose and Throat
Universities, technical institutions and colleges will almost always require some form of secondary school completion certification, along with a passing score on a standardized aptitude test. Medical school requires candidates to first achieve a bachelor’s degree, and pass another standardized exam before admissions.
A high aptitude for science and math is essential to success in this field, as there is a steep learning curve for ENT medical information. Candidates should also be extremely detail-oriented, as ear, nose and throat examinations can require miniscule observations, detailed note-taking and carefully assessed conditions. Great interpersonal and communication skills are important qualities, as ENT specialists will be interacting constantly with patients and team members. An ENT course is also a particularly long field of study (as high as 14 years), so students should be dedicated from the start.
Skills and Qualifications Acquired from Studies in Ear, Nose and Throat
If a student is forced to major in several areas aside from a unified ENT course, their learning may vary significantly from a traditional ENT major study. Otolaryngology studies will all usually train students in the following areas:
- Surgical practices for the ear, nose and throat.
- Ear, nose and throat anatomy and functions.
- Examination tools and practices for the ear, nose and throat.
- Basics of preliminary evaluation process.
- Basics of follow-up assessments.
- Signs, symptoms and treatments for ear, nose and throat disease.
- Environmental, social and other factors on ear, nose and throat health.
- Treatment of ear, nose and throat injuries.
- Medical data documentation.
- Medical and patient laws, standards and regulations.
Careers for Studies in Ear, Nose and Throat
Almost all individuals that study the ear, nose and throat of the human form are prepared for clinical or surgical practice. Whether they work for a hospital, free clinic, government agency or other medical facility, they will find work as ENT surgeons and primary care physicians. More rarely, these graduates work in medical research facilities, universities, relief work or health and service projects.