Claire Bernstein, Ph.D.

Rehab Engineering Research Center

Claire Bernstein

Phone Numbers

202-448-7204 (V)



Sorenson Language and Communication Center 3113

Dr. Bernstein received her Ph.D. in Audiology from Columbia University. Her clinical, teaching, and research work over the years has focused on rehabilitative audiology. She is part of a multi-center research consortium at Gallaudet University- the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center (RERC) on Technology for Deaf/ Hard of Hearing funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research ((NIDILRR). Dr. Bernstein’s work is focused on developing and evaluating new technology and novel rehabilitation approaches to help improve communication skills and functional outcomes of adult hearing aid and cochlear implant users.


I am currently a Co-Principal Investigator (Co-PI) with the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center( RERC) for Deaf/Hard of Hearing at Gallaudet University. In collaboration with Professor Diane Brewer, I recently completed a multi-year, multi-site randomized clinical trial (RCT) looking at the role of short-term aural rehabilitation (AR) treatment intervention for adult cochlear implant (CI) users. The study found statistically significant improvements in speech recognition, reduced hearing handicap, functional communication outcomes, and psychosocial function for those in the AR intervention group only, suggesting that AR treatment can help maximize outcomes for adult cochlear implant users.

Directing another RCT with Prof. Brewer to evaluate performance of cochlear implant (CI) users with enhanced aural rehabilitation (AR) strategies via telehealth technology. We are looking to determine whether a short-term rehabilitation program for adult CI users will be as effective when rehabilitation training is provided over the internet as when it is provided face-to-face with a clinician. Collaborating sites include Columbia University Medical Center, University of Maryland-College Park, University of Kentucky Health Sciences Center, and the Cleveland Clinic.

I also mentor Au.D. and Ph.D. students in the Department of Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences on their research projects. I’ve served as an Audiologic Consultant on Phase I and now on Phase II of a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Grant from the National Institute on Aging, developing interactive informational support for first-time older hearing aid users. 

Website Info:

Bernstein/Brewer Aural Rehabilitation Lab

RERC on Technology for Deaf/Hard of Hearing



Selected Prior Courses Taught and Invited Lectures

 2011-2014     UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND MEDICAL SCHOOL- Department of Neuroscience

                        Guest Lecturer: Clinical Correlates of Hearing Loss

2002-2012     GALLAUDET UNIVERSITY- Department of Hearing, Speech, and Language Sciences

                       Adjunct Professor of Audiology:  Aging and Hearing Loss

1988-95         MEDICAL COLLEGE OF VIRGINIA- Department of Gerontology

                       Graduate Course: Biology and Physiology of Human Aging

                       Guest Lecturer: Hearing Loss in the Elderly



President (2017), Academy of Rehabilitative Audiology (ARA)

Invited Board Member, Academy of Rehabilitative Audiology (ARA)

Member, Planning Committee for the 2018 ARA Institute 

Invited Member, Honors Committee of the American Academy of Audiology (AAA)

Invited Reviewer, Trends in Amplification, Thieme Publications, Journal of the American Academy of Audiology


Bernstein, C. & Brewer, D.(2018). Optimizing Cochlear Implant Outcomes with Short term Aural Rehabilitation: RCT. Paper presented at the Mid Atlantic Cochlear Implant Conference, College Park, MD, January 26.

Bernstein, C., Brewer, D*., Bakke, M., Olson, A., Machmer, E., Spitzer, J., Schauer,P., Sydlowski,S.,& Levitt (2017). Maximizing Cochlear Implant Outcomes with Short-Term Aural Rehabilitation: Randomized Controlled Trial. Manuscript submitted for publication. * Co-First Authors

Brewer, D., Bernstein, C., Woodruff, T., Olson, A., Bosworth, C., Sydlowski, S., & Seward, K..(2017). Development of Telehealth AR Training Protocol/Program for Adult CI Users. Paper presented at the Ninth International Adult AR Conference. St. Pete Beach, Fla., December 4-6.

Woodruff, T., Bernstein, C., & Cienkowski, K. (2017). Support Service Preferences of Caregivers of Children Who are D/deaf or Hard of Hearing. Poster presented at the ASHA Annual Convention. Los Angeles, California, November 9-11.

Snyder, A., Bakke, M., & Bernstein, C. (2017) Inter-rater Reliability of the Cochlear Implant Skills Review (CISR) Poster presented at the American Auditory Society, Scottsdale, AZ, , March 2-4.

Plant, G., Bernstein, C., & Levitt, H. (2015). Optimizing Performance in Adult Cochlear Implant Users through Clinician Directed Auditory Training. Seminars in Hearing, 36, 296-309.

Brewer D., Bernstein, C., Olson, A., Schauer, P., Spitzer, J., & Sydlowski, S. (2014). Short Term AR for Adult CI Users- Enhancing Outcomes. Paper presented at the Academy of Rehabilitative Audiology Conference. Philadelphia, PA, Sept 9-11.

Bernstein, C., Brewer, D., Bakke, M., Machmer, E., Spitzer, J., & Schauer, P. (2013). Maximizing the Benefits of Cochlear Implants through Short-Term Aural Rehabilitation Intervention. Paper presented at the Seventh International Adult AR Conference. St. Pete Beach, Florida, May 20-22.

Bernstein, C., Bakke, M., Mazevski, A., Blake-Rahter, P., Presley, R., Hume, K., Plant, G., & Levitt, H. (2012). Benefits of Speech Tracking Training on Sentence Recognition, Tracking Rate, and Self-Assessed Communication Function in Adult Cochlear Implant Users. Journal of the Academy of Rehabilitative Audiology, 45, 11-39.

Brewer, D., Bernstein, C., Harvey, T., Bakke, M., McCann, & Blake-Rahter, P. (2011). Efficacy of Short-term Audiologic Rehabilitation for Adult Cochlear Implant Users. Poster presented at the American Academy of Audiology Conference. Chicago, Illinois, April 11-14.

Bakke, M., Bernstein, C., Bally, S., & Pray, J. (2008). Managing Hearing Loss in Older Adults: Assessment, intervention, and technologies for independence and well being. In R. Felder & M.Alwan (Eds.), Aging Medicine, Eldercare Technology for Clinical Practitioners (p. to appear). Totowa, NJ: Humana Press Inc.

Bernstein, C. (Ed.) (2007). Dual Sensory Loss. Trends in Amplification, 11(4), 217-300.    


800 Florida Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20002


800 Florida Avenue NE
Washington, DC 20002