Instructors and masks or face shields

Estimated reading time: 1 min

Faculty and instructors must wear a mask or face covering while teaching.

Mask and Face Coverings

  • Masks require 6 feet of distancing
  • Face shields do not exempt the use of a mask when teaching

Face shield is last resort

  • Face shields require at least 12 feet of distancing at all times
  • Face shields, without the use of a mask, should only be used in limited circumstances such as in a large lecture space, with a microphone (if available) 
  • Potential situations in which an instructor would opt for a face shield might include:

    • A medical or mental health condition preventing the instructor from wearing a mask – this would require a medical exemption and accommodation through Office of Equal Opportunity.
    • Teaching in a large lecture space – we would recommend first trying to use the mask and a microphone, if available, and only using the face shield without a mask as a last resort when a minimum of 12 ft distancing can be maintained.
    • Teaching and accommodating hearing impaired individuals needing to lip read.

The Pandemic Planning team has a supply of clear face coverings that are the preferred method. Wearing a face shield is a last resort.


  • The Office of Equal Opportunity works with employees who cannot wear a mask due to a medical or mental health condition. Employees request an exemption request form and accommodation