Hearing Waiver


10-Year Member
5-Year Member
Mar 23, 2008
I have a quick question about Hearling loss and AFROTC.

Currently, the DODMERB people sent back and said I had been DQed due to hearing loss (Hearing loss in my left ear, very little hearing between 800 and 2000 hz), however, I am completely capable of doing everything in ROTC and I am excelling in it. My Cadre Lieutenant Colonel called me personally to tell me he was trying to do something about it, however, The original waiver was denied. FYI I already have an enrollment allocation.

My question is, How should I go about the rebuttal process? I am already getting another hearing test to see if I can get my scores up, but is there anything else I can do in order to convince them that this is not an issue? Can I get letters from doctors, etcetera?

Thanks in advance
Submitting a new hearing test can help, as long as your hearing improves. When you submit the new hearing test also submit a letter requesting a re-evaluation of the waiver.

There are a couple of things you should do and one that you can do before getting the new hearing test.

1. Get your ears looked at by your physician to ensure there is no wax build up in your ears. If there is, have it cleaned out.
2. Make sure you do not have a head cold.
3. Try to schedule the repeat hearing test for a Monday morning. Spend the entire weekend in a quiet environment. No I-Pod, headphones, long cell phone or phone usage, car stereo, home stereo, loud TV or concerts for that weekend.
4. If you work in a loud environment, try to take the weekend off.
5. No shooting.
The above items are what you SHOULD do, you do not have to do them, but they could help. Avoid all loud noises, or constant medium noises. Basically have a long boring weekend.

The item that you could do, but is completely up to you, is to get a pair of foam ear plugs and wear them for the two days prior to the hearing test. Only take them out to sleep and shower. Otherwise, do not remove them until you get into the hearing test. You can pick them up at sporting goods stores (usually in the gun section) and at some supermarkets. Follow the directions on how to place them in your ears.

Nothing listed here will guarantee that your hearing will improve. A change as small at 10 Db from your initial hearing test may sway the waiver authorities.

If you have any other questions please let me know.
At USNA last summer, I had a candidate who had passed his DoDMERB but shortly after I-Day was readministered a hearing test which he did not pass. Are follow-on tests immediately after induction normal? If so, I doubt that your boring quiet weekend advice would be applicable.
A baseline hearing test is administered during plebe summer at USNA. I'm not sure what happens at the other academies, but I'd have to assume that a baseline hearing test is done then as well. For ROTC the baseline hearing test is done at the time of the commissioning physical in the junior or senior year.