In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the statutory, regulatory, and policy landscape is rapidly changing to best protect the health and safety of students, employees, and visitors to the University. As such, new temporary policies may be developed, or existing policies may be temporarily modified or suspended. 

Due to the unique and unprecedented challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, UD is implementing this interim guidance, which applies to all UD students -- graduate, undergraduates, and continuing education at all UD locations -- on campus.

As our knowledge of COVID-19 and related guidance from state and public health authorities continue to evolve, this guidance may change at any time as conditions and/or circumstances may warrant. Students need to be aware that guidance/policies may change and they will be expected to abide by any updates or changes to this document and held accountable accordingly.  Students should check this website daily for updates.

All UD students are expected to comply with the UD COVID-19 Return to Campus Guidelines for Students. The word "student" as used throughout this document includes Student Organizations as defined in the Student Guide to University Policies. Failure to comply may result in corrective action as described in the Compliance section. Any students with concerns about compliance with these Guidelines or the Return to Campus Guidelines for Employees should consult the Office of Student Conduct or the Office of the Dean of Students or report such concerns, which may be done anonymously, to the UD Compliance Hotline.


Guiding Principles

  1. The safety and wellbeing of the UD community shall remain paramount.
  2. Students are vital to the social change needed on our campus in relation to COVID-19. Students need to hold themselves accountable to regulations and encourage their peers to do the same.
  3. The university remains committed to academic excellence and knows that prioritizing community health and safety allows us to advance our academic goals.
  4. Students are responsible for following all guidance provided by the university and relevant local, state, and federal public health regulations.

Health and Safety Guidelines for Students


COVID-19 Testing

To help protect our students, faculty, staff and visitors from COVID-19, the University of Delaware has developed a robust and comprehensive testing program. These protocols apply to everyone on the University of Delaware campuses. Students should follow these guidelines.

  • Pre-arrival testing: Students must submit proof that they tested negative for COVID-19 before arriving on campus.  The test must take place no more than 14 days before the student arrives on campus and the results must be submitted to Student Health Services through a secure portal.  The testing requirement applies to students living on campus as well as students who live off campus and have face-to-face coursework or plan to use campus facilities.

  • Testing during the semester: Ongoing COVID-19 testing of the UD community is a critical part of the University’s plan to protect the health and safety of students, faculty, staff and visitors. Students should comply with all testing requirements.


Positive COVID-19 Test Results

Any student who tests positive for COVID-19 should immediately avoid contact with other individuals and self-isolate. The student may want to seek medical advice from Student Health Services or their personal healthcare provider. If the positive COVID-19 test is from a test that is not administered from Student Health Services, the student is encouraged to report this information to Student Health Services. This is especially important if they are living, taking classes, or engaging in other activities on campus. 


Daily Health Screening Prior to Engaging on Campus

All students must complete the University of Delaware daily health screening prior to coming to campus for any commitment. This includes but is not limited to classes, labs, meetings, meals, library use, use of university facilities such as the Little Bob and informal meetings. Off-campus students should complete the survey prior to leaving their residence. Students in the residence halls must complete the survey before leaving their on-campus room/apartment. Upon completion of the screening students must follow all instructions and steps provided to them based on their response.

Students and employees entering the following buildings must show a UD ID and their e-mail from that day verifying successful completion of the daily health screening questionnaire: Carpenter Sports Building, Fred Rust Ice Arena, Pencader Residential Dining, Perkins Student Center, Trabant University Center.


Contact Tracing

Contact tracing is essential to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Students should be answering phones and complying with calls related to contact tracing from the state of Delaware, their home state or the university.


Cloth Face Covering Requirement

One of the effective ways we can reduce the spread of COVID-19 is through a commitment for Blue Hens to wear face coverings in coordination with physical distancing. This is to protect people around you, as it is possible that you may be infected but not have any symptoms. A cloth face covering is a material that covers the nose and mouth. It can be secured to the head with ties or straps or simply wrapped around the lower face. It can be made of a variety of materials, such as cotton, silk, or linen. Research has shown that certain more densely-woven fabrics may be more effective. A cloth face covering may be factory-made or sewn by hand, or can be improvised from household items such as scarfs, T-shirts, sweatshirts or towels.


  • Everyone, including students, employees and visitors, must wear an appropriate face covering at all times within indoor facilities on campus.

  • Cloth face coverings are required outside on campus grounds when in close proximity (< 6 ft.) to others.

  • Students should wash their cloth face coverings regularly using a machine wash on gentle cycle with warm water settings and mild detergent.

  • Students are permitted to use their own cloth face masks or face coverings provided they cover the nose and mouth completely and otherwise meet State of Delaware and CDC guidelines.

  • UD will provide cloth face coverings for those who do not have them.

  • Disability Support Services can help with special needs related to cloth face masks or face coverings.


Physical Distancing

Keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools to avoid being exposed to this virus and slowing its spread. COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact (within about 6 feet) for a prolonged period of time.

Physical distancing helps limit opportunities to come in contact with contaminated surfaces and infected people outside the home. Although the risk of severe illness may be different for everyone, anyone can get and spread COVID-19. Everyone has a role to play in slowing the spread and protecting themselves, their family and their community. Students should follow the following guidelines:

  • Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people.

  • Do not gather in groups larger than directed by state, local and UD directives.

  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.

  • Follow visual cues and signage such as floor decals, colored tape or signs indicating where to stand to increase distance between individuals moving through the facility.
  • Furniture and seating areas in University spaces may be adjusted to accommodate physical distancing requirements. Individuals should not move furniture or make other adjustments to spaces without approval from an authorized University representative familiar with physical distancing requirements.
  • Follow current CDC guidelines.




Students must wash their hands after using the restroom and as needed throughout the day. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands before and after touching your face.


Personal Space Cleaning

Before starting class, lab, studying in the Library or other commitments, students must wipe down all work areas/lab stations/desks with provided EPA-registered 70% alcohol solution.


Using Restrooms

Maintain physical distancing while waiting in line to enter a restroom facility and during use of the restroom. Wash your hands thoroughly afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus. Use a drying towel to open the door and discard in the waste receptacle placed outside in the hallway.


Using Elevators

No more than one person may enter an elevator at a time, so please use the stairs whenever possible. If you are using the elevator, wear your mask or face covering and avoid touching the elevator buttons with your exposed hand/fingers, if possible. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol upon departing the elevator.


Meals/Dining Halls

Students who dine or visit in University dining facilities must adhere to all guidelines established by UD Dining.

  • Do not enter dining locations if you are sick, have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or have been in contact with anyone who is sick now or within the last two weeks. On campus students in quarantine or isolation will have meals delivered to their rooms.

  • Wear a cloth face covering when entering a dining location or to pick up orders, and as much as possible when not eating.

  • Follow directional signage, arrows and floor markings to promote one-way foot traffic in, out, and through dining locations and to maintain proper social distance where lines can form.

  • Maintain a distance of 6 feet or more from others in any entryway, hallway or waiting area and if you are dining with others who don’t live with you.

  • When applicable, follow set occupancy limits for dining locations.

  • When possible, sit at tables spaced at least 6 feet apart from other people and use outdoor seating areas.

  • When possible, choose food and drink options that are not self-serve to limit the use of shared serving utensils, handles, buttons, or touchscreens.

  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol when entering and exiting dining locations.


Campus Recreation and Sport Facilities

Students who utilize or visit facilities must adhere to all guidelines established by Athletics and Campus Recreation.


Library, Museums and Press Facilities

Morris Library is now open with changes for the UD community’s continued health and safety, including new hours, required seat reservations and an easy-access pickup service for physical materials. Those who have UD ONEcards, but are not UD students, faculty and staff have access to the pickup service only.

Printers and copiers are unavailable in the Library; please go to Smith Hall to release print jobs. See what you need to know for the fall semester.


Residence Halls

Students who reside in University housing facilities must adhere to all guidelines established by Residence Life & Housing. To prioritize the health and safety of our residence hall community members, we have updated our guest policy for the Fall 2020 semester:

  • With the exception of move in and move out, the only guests permitted in the residence halls are fellow members of the residence hall community. On-campus residents may not visit other residence halls that are not their own. No off-campus residents will be permitted in the residence halls.
  • No overnight guests are permitted in the residence halls.
  • Guests from inside of the residence hall should be limited to one guest in a bedroom space.


Off Campus Living

We encourage students to abide by these guidelines in their off campus living environment to avoid being exposed to COVID-19 and to help slow its spread. Students should always follow current CDC guidelines. Off campus social gatherings, especially those inside and in enclosed areas, present a high risk in relation to COVID-19. The State of Delaware and the City of Newark have set guidelines for gatherings and other events. Students are expected to be familiar with those guidelines and comply with them. If students are cited for violating the state or city guidelines for gatherings, they will be referred to the Office of the Student Conduct in addition to facing state and local penalties. While off campus students should:

  • Limit guests in off-campus residences and limit visits to other residences.

  • Not host any event or gathering that violates state or local guidance.

  • Maintain physical distance from individuals not in their household.

  • Wear a cloth face covering when in the presence of individuals outside of their household and/or when physical distancing is not possible.


Public Transportation

If you take public transportation or ride on UD shuttles, wear a face mask or face covering before entering and while riding the vehicle and avoid touching surfaces with your hands. Upon disembarking, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol as soon as possible and before removing your face covering.


Student Organizations

All Student Organizations at the University of Delaware should comply with this webpage and other guidance provided by the office, unit, and/or program that sponsors, advises or supports that organization. RSO’s and fraternities and sororities should click here for current guidelines. Student Organizations refer to any student group formed for scholastic, professional, social, or extracurricular activities. These may include but are not limited to: registered student organizations, other departments- or college-recognized clubs, residence hall governments, sports teams (including varsity, club, and intramural teams), fraternities, and sororities, chartered organizations, and honor societies.


What events, programs, and opportunities can RSOs provide?

After the pivot to online classes in the Spring, RSOs saw an increase in overall involvement and engagement when focusing on unique and collaborative online/virtual activities. Specifically, RSOs that held regular virtual Zoom calls, hosted Discord servers, and interactive play-at-home activities saw increased involvement and participation. Student Involvement recommends that RSOs continue with regular and scheduled Zoom meetings throughout the semester - holding virtual meetings is the basis for effective sustainability in a virtual environment. Successful events that RSOs can host and participate include virtual community service, fundraising via a Henfunder, Netflix/TV/Sports viewing parties, Virtual 5ks and workouts, guest speakers, leadership development (through BHLP and BOLT!), professional development, eSports competition viewing, podcasting, and participating in Perkins Live together. RSOs interested in help with planning successful virtual engagement should contact Student Involvement. This is an incredible opportunity to innovate and try new ideas and the University strives to help all RSOs do so in a safe and healthy manner for the entire community.


Accommodation Needs/Request

COVID-19 is a new virus and there is limited information regarding risk factors. Based on currently available CDC information and clinical expertise, older adults (65 or older) and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for several illnesses from COVID-19.

If you are someone who needs to take extra precautions, you may need to consider additional protocols and/or accommodations to participate in the academic program at UD. Requests and/or needs for further consultation on such matters should be made to the Office of Disability Support Services (DSS).



Students who do not comply with University expectations, are alleged to be in violation of these Guidelines or cause disruption by their actions and behavior will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct. If at any time you have concerns about student behavior, we encourage you to report this information online to the Office of Student Conduct. In an emergency or when there are immediate safety concerns, please call 911.

Students who are found responsible for violating University policies will receive sanctions, including disciplinary action and educational interventions to reinforce University expectations.



Student health and safety are of primary concern at the University of Delaware. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is especially important that all students abide by expectations enacted to minimize the exposure to and spread of the virus. When there are concerns about participation in activities that might spread the virus, an important response is contact tracing and other initiatives that promote the health and safety of our community.  

It is essential that accurate and complete information be collected by contact tracers in order to identify who may have come in contact with or been infected by COVD-19. The University recognizes that students may be reluctant to divulge to a contact tracer that they were engaged in behavior that does not comply with University, city or state COVID-19 guidelines.

In addition, it is important that students participate in UD Surveillance testing and risk reduction strategies to protect the health and safety of our community. 

In recognition of this, the University will not pursue conduct action against any student who discloses to a contact tracer that they engaged in behavior that does not comply with current guidelines. Similarly, no conduct action will be pursued if a student self-reports a positive test for COVID-19 and behavior that violates COVID-19 guidelines. However, health and protection measures - such as self-isolation, quarantine, additional testing - may be instituted by health officials and students will be expected to follow these measures.

The COVID Amnesty Protocol does not preclude disciplinary action due to any other violations of the Code of Conduct not related to the COVID-19 guidelines.  All incidents are examined on an individual basis to determine if COVID Amnesty is applicable.