COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

NEW Will the residence halls be open for spring term?

Yes, as of now, the residence halls and dining venues will remain open for residents. If you are not currently a residence hall student and want to live in the residence halls spring term, you can register for housing now. 

Students may stay in the residence halls over spring break. Students need to complete their End of Winter Term 2021 plans form on their My Housing account to notify housing if they will be staying over break, returning for spring term, or checking out and not returning for spring term. There is no additional fee for staying over the break. To see the full message residents were sent about the end of winter term and spring break, visit our blog

If students are not living on campus for spring term, they must submit their plans on the End of Winter Term 2021 Plans form on My Housing, remove all belongings, and return their key to their service center prior to winter closing on Friday, March 19, at 7:00 p.m. If a student moves out any time after Friday, March 19, they will be charged for the first 10 days room and board for spring term.

Visit our spring break page for more information. 


What plans are there for physical distancing for students in the residence halls?

We are committed to meeting—and in many cases exceeding—all of the standards and guidance from the Oregon Health Authority for our residence halls. We have reduced density and are doing extra cleaning, particularly in shared bathrooms. No students will live in triples in our residence halls for the 2020–21 academic year.

Residents and staff are encouraged to follow physical distancing measures, including:

  • Maintaining six feet of distance between people when spending time in the residence halls.
  • Wearing face coverings in all indoor spaces is required.
  • Engaging in remote social programs and activities.

More details are available on our Coronavirus Information for Residents page. 


If I am exempt from living on campus, am I still able to register for housing if the campus opens up in-person classes later in the school year?

If you canceled your housing contract for fall and decide you want to live on campus for winter or spring term, you can now register again for housing. You will not be able to keep your same fall room assignment. 


UPDATED If UO closes due to COVID-19, will residents still be held to their housing contract?

If the university closes the residence halls and require all students to leave campus for the remainder of the school year, students will not be charged for the canceled portion of the room and meal plan. 

If the university goes fully remote for all or portions of fall, winter, or spring terms, but the university does not close the residence halls, the room and meal charges and contract terms are the same as if classes are delivered in-person, remotely, or online. All first-year students are automatically exempt from the live-on requirement for the 2020–21 academic year. 

If a student chooses to move out during the academic year, they will receive an exemption to the live-on requirement (for first-year students) and all residents will be responsible for a charge of $9 per day for each day of the remaining contract period. If a student returns to live on campus in the residence halls for Winter 2021, Spring 2021, or Fall 2021–their contract cancellation fee can be credited to the room and meal charges for the term they return to campus. The credit may only be used to pay for UO room and meal charges as part of a residence hall contract. 


What plans are in place if a housing resident gets COVID-19?

Isolation refers to individuals who test positive for COVID-19, and its purpose is to slow the spread of the disease by separating positive individuals from people who are not infected.

Quarantine refers to individuals who may be exposed to a positive case, and its purpose is to slow the spread of the disease by separating and restricting the movement of individuals who were exposed to minimize the exposure of others and to monitor them if they become sick.

At the guidance of health authorities and the state, we are setting aside entire sections of our residence halls for isolation (for positive cases) or quarantine (for contacts) should that become necessary for those students living in the residence halls. If a student needs to quarantine or self-isolate, representatives from University Housing, University Health Services, Lane County Public Health, and the UO Case Incident Management Team will work closely to determine how to manage each student’s situation on a case-by-case basis.

A housing resident who is identified through the UO Case Management Team as requiring isolation or quarantine will be assigned to a quarantine or isolation room, receive meals delivered outside their door (three meals, twice daily), and the student may only leave per health authority instruction. In addition to daily cleaning by custodial staff, there will be additional sanitizing of touch points using EPA-registered disinfectants.

A student in isolation (positive case) will not be able to leave their room and therefore, the risk is minimized for cross-interaction with residents once in their room. Exceptions include medical appointments.

We will take every precaution to keep residents and staff safe. Custodial staff will use appropriate PPE when cleaning quarantine and isolation spaces. Residence life staff will provide appropriate community care and programming remotely.

Are residents notified if someone tests positive for COVID-19 on their floor or in their residence hall?

When a student in a residence hall tests positive for COVID-19, Lane County Public Health and University Health Services work as a team to investigation into to investigate and manage each case, which includes communication with individuals identified as close contacts. A close contact is someone who spent at least 15 minutes within six feet of the person positive for COVID-19.

The University Health Services Corona Corps Care Team will connect with close contacts for further instructions on quarantine requirements. University Health Services and Lane County Public Health also oversee necessary communications. In most instances, residents of an entire residence hall floor or community would not be notified due to privacy laws.


I have concerns about living in the residence halls due to COVID-19. What should I do?

Whether we are in the middle of a pandemic or not, we want you to have an outstanding UO and on-campus residential experience. Our Residence Life team is here to provide engagement opportunities and support you—in person and virtually.

We encourage residents to learn everything they can about all the university is doing to ensure our students have a safe and positive living experience.

The university will provide exemptions to the first-year live-on requirement and can cancel their contract in their My Housing. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions.


Testing residence hall students 

The University of Oregon is committed to following medical authority guidance to reduce the risks of transmission of COVID-19. We understand that during the COVID-19 pandemic, this includes taking several measures. Testing helps identify positive cases which, when paired with contact tracing and isolation, frequent hand washing, physical distancing and wearing face coverings, can significantly slow the spread of COVID-19.  The UO has additional information on testing, contract tracing, and case management for the UO community.

How accurate are the tests?

The CDC’s guidance is that no test is ever perfect.  All tests sometimes have a false negative result (the test result should be positive because you DO have COVID-19, but comes back as undetected). Sometimes the results are not definitive (the result is unclear, and you don’t know if it is positive or negative). For this and other reasons, results should always be reviewed by a healthcare professional. In the case of student testing here at the University of Oregon, medical staff from University Health Services will be involved in the review and notification of positive and not definitive cases.  

What does the process of testing look like?

Residential students will take self-collected test (virtually painless and minimally invasive). University Health Services staff will coordinate with the students on the test results.  

Will residents be tested again during the term or year?

All residence hall students are required to be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival and on a schedule and in a manner that the UO determined is appropriate to promote public health.

NEW What are the university's winter term move-in and testing procedures?

Students living in the residence halls have been notified via email about required testing and move-in process for winter term. Current information about move-in and testing for winter term can be found here: housing.uoregon.edu/winter-break.

During winter term, all residence hall students will continue to be tested weekly (students without a roommate) or every other week (one roommate tests one week and the other roommate tests the other week). Students will be expected to continue their compliance with this measure in order to remain living on campus.


If a vaccine is required to live in the residence halls, but I do not wish to take it, what are my options?

Students, who do not wish to receive a required vaccine (whether a flu or potential COVID-19 vaccine), may cancel their housing contract without penalty (no cancellation fees and no fees for the unused portion of your room/board). Should a vaccine become required, details about the cancellation process will be communicated to students at that time.


What is the contract addendum? 

The contract addendum is an addendum to your housing contract in response to COVID-19. The addendum is available in your My Housing.  Please log into your My Housing to carefully read, review, and sign the addendum. If you are under the age of 18 at time of signing, your parent or guardian will also need to sign the addendum by printing a signature page and uploading the page to your My Housing. This must be signed and submitted by September 1, 2020.  

If you do not sign and submit this addendum, you will not be able to review your move-in information or receive your keys. If you do not want to sign the addendum, or do not want to be tested for COVID-19, you need to submit an exemption in My Housing and cancel your housing registration by September 1, 2020. 


What is the guest policy? 

Guests will only be allowed in designated common area lounges, meeting rooms, and multi-purpose rooms in the Residence Halls. Guests must abide by the University’s COVID-19 Regulations and other applicable public health requirements. Guests are prohibited from entering residential corridors or bedrooms. However, residents are permitted to have up to two guests assist them with checking in on their check-in day. Overnight guests are prohibited. A guest is defined as a person not assigned to your residence hall room. 


Will students living in the residence halls be allowed to go home on the weekends?

Students will not be restricted from going home. Students will be advised to (consider and) take precautions when engaging with others while away and upon their return to campus.  If there are any guideline changes, we will certainly communicate these to our students.


What are the guidelines for someone who lives in Family Housing and University Apartments?

If you live in Family Housing and University Apartments (FHUA), here are some important things to note as it relates to COVID-19:

  • FHUA are considered individual family units and are therefore considered an isolated space.
  • University Housing will disinfect common areas such as laundry rooms and playground structures with EPA-certified disinfectants. 
  • Face coverings are required in any UO owned building(s). This includes FHUA indoor common areas or outside when physical distancing cannot be maintained. You do not have to wear a face covering in your individual housing unit. 
  • Please be sure to disinfect your own units, stay home if you are ill, wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds, do not gather in groups of more than 10 people (especially indoors), and maintain physical distancing.

Why are triple rooms no longer an option?

Consistent with guidance from health authorities and the state, there will be no triple rooms available for the 2020–21 academic year. 

We understand that not having our triple room types available means our most economical option has shifted. We encourage you to explore our double rooms in Hamilton and Walton. All of our room options and costs can be found online at housing.uoregon.edu/costs

The CARES Act funds can be used to assist a student with additional housing costs due to the room occupancy changes due to COVID-19. If you need assistance, you can submit an online application for fall term once it is up and request assistance with housing, explaining that you have the additional cost of a double room. It is important to note that these funds are limited and are not a guarantee. For more information on the CARES Act funds, please visit financialaid.uoregon.edu/cares.