Central Auditory Processing Disorder

Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) is a term to describe how the brain interprets sounds that we hear, for example the difference in pitch between two sounds.

CAPD, often referred as Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) is where a person can detect sounds at normal levels but can not process the sound information accurately. When this occurs in children it can lead to learning difficulties and sometimes behavioural issues.

A parent, specialist or teacher may suspect a child with CAPD if they have:-

  • Difficulty following instruction
  • Difficulty understanding speech in the presence of background noise
  • Difficulty learning in background noise
  • Difficulty with direction of sound (localisation)
  • Difficulty with reading and spelling
  • Become easily distracted
  • Poor verbal skills
  • Behavioural and self esteem issues

Assessing CAPD

If a child is suspected to have CAPD then he or she can be assessed over two appointments that involves:

  • First appt, 30-45 min: Taking a case history to learn about the child’s learning and hearing skills and performing a CAPD hearing test to rule out any undetected hearing loss.

Questionnaire is sent home with you to complete in-conjunction with all parents and the teacher.  The questionnaire is emailed back to us so our audiologist can prepare the CAPD assessment.

  • Second appt, 90 min: Performing a series of Central Auditory Processing Assessment.  We recommend CAPD assessments are performed in the morning when a child is more energised and alert.

What age can we assess for CAPD

CAPD tests can be performed on children from age 7.5 years plus.

Management of CAPD

Management of CAPD involves a team approach with other professionals such a Speech Pathologists and Teachers. This typically involves three approaches:

  • Environment modifications such a seating the child away from distracting noises or using a FM system to reduce unwanted noises
  • The use of intervention programs designed to improve auditory processing in children
  • Teaching compensatory strategies so the child can cope better in daily listening environments


First appt, approx 30min: CAPD Hearing Assessment and Consultation $120.00
Second appt, approx 90min: Central Auditory Processing Assessment $295.00

Book an Appointment