Tolerance of face coverings for children with autism spectrum disorder

Mary Halbur, Tiffany Kodak, Marisa McKee, Regina Carroll, Elizabeth Preas, Jessi Reidy, Maria Clara Cordeiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Healthcare professionals and government officials have advised the use of personal protective equipment, such as face masks and face shields, to assist with limiting the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). Due to the prevalence of challenging behavior associated with other medical routines, the present study evaluated a treatment package composed of graduated exposure, prompts, reinforcement, and escape extinction on tolerance of wearing a face covering for up to 5 min for 12 children with ASD in a systematic replication of Cox et al. (2017) and Sivaraman et al. (2020). We also extended previous research by measuring generalization of face covering type (i.e., face shield) and the efficacy of a treatment extension for tolerating a face covering for up to 15 min during the participants' trial-based instruction and play periods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)600-617
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of applied behavior analysis
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2021


  • autism spectrum disorder
  • compliance
  • face mask
  • face shield
  • graduated exposure
  • tolerance of medical routines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Applied Psychology


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