COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

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 are reducing density and making plans for extra cleaning, particularly in shared bathrooms. No students will live in triples in our residence halls.

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. 


Have the deadlines for canceling housing or exemptions changed?

The following deadlines have been extended from September 1, 2020 to October 15, 2020: 

  • Last day to cancel housing registration and receive 100 percent refund of the initial housing payment ($350). 
  • Students wishing to cancel do not need to submit an exemption, they can just log into My Housing and cancel their contract.

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 cancel your housing contract for fall and decide you want to live on campus for winter or spring term, you can register again for housing. This will be available later in fall term. You will not be able to keep your same fall room assignment. 


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. Students can apply for an exemption and cancel their housing registration by September 1, 2020 and receive 100 percent refund of the initial housing payment ($350). 

If a student chooses to move out during the academic year, they will need to apply for and 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.


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 (Barnhart Hall) 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 times 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.


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

First, find out about all that we are doing to ensure our students have a safe and positive living experience. We have several prevention efforts in place in the residence halls such as increased cleaning protocols and guided signage to remind students how to stay safe. You can read more about what we are doing and what you can expect from living in the residence halls on our Coronavirus Information for Residents page. 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 (incredible) Residence Life team will be there to provide engagement opportunities and support you—in person and virtually.

The university will provide exemptions to the first-year live-on requirement. If a student chooses to apply they should complete their exemption in My Housing by September 1, 2020. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions.


How is move-in going to work?

Fall move-in will be spread out across several days to allow for physical distancing. We will be there to help your move-in be a smooth and efficient experience. Currently, two guests will be allowed on campus to assist you with move-in.

Students will be assigned their move-in date and time by early September.


Testing residence hall students at move-in

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 handwashing, social distancing and wearing masks, 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. More details will be shared as we get closer to move-in.

Why are students not able to move-in and then take the test?

Conducting testing at the time of arrival will help to quickly identify any positive cases and isolate them, reducing the chances of spread within the Residence Halls.  

When can I move into my room?

If you test positive for COVID-19, University Health Services staff will work directly with you, including placing you in a room in the residence hall that is specifically designated for students who test positive. Once cleared per health authority instruction, you will be able to move into your assigned residence hall room. If you test negative for COVID-19, you will be able to move into your room at your designated move-in date and time (the day following your test date and time). 

What happens if I test positive for COVID-19 at move-in?

At the guidance of health authorities and the state, we are setting aside entire sections of one residence hall for housing residents who need isolation (if they are deemed positive for COVID-19) or quarantine (if they are deemed to have been in close contact with someone who is positive) should that become necessary. A housing resident who is identified through the UO Case Management Team as requiring isolation (in the case of positive case of COVID-19) or quarantine (when having been deemed a contact of a positive case) will be assigned a room, receive meals outside their doors, and may only leave per health authority instruction. Once cleared, you will be able to move into your permanent residence hall room. Isolation is typically 10 days, and quarantine is typically 14 days. But the public health authority will advise each person as to the specifics of their situation.

Will residents be tested again during the term or year?

All students living in the UO’s residence halls will be required to be tested for COVID-19 upon arrival and a minimum of one other occasion during the fall term.

When will you have more details about the residence hall testing? 

Residents will receive more information with their move-in information in early September.  This is a complicated and unprecedented situation that requires careful planning and coordination. We have a dedicated team of professionals in our housing, health services and testing teams working together to ensure that this is an efficient and effective process, focused on helping to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 on campus and supporting any students who arrive on our campus already carrying the COVID-19 virus. We will continue to update the UO community on the specifics of the plan as the planning evolves.

If I test positive at move-in and decide to go home to isolate, will I be charged room and meal charges until I move into my assigned room?

Yes, students who check in within 10 days of the start of the contract (September 25) will be charged the full room and meal charges for fall term.


If I decide to go home for Thanksgiving and finals week, will I be charged for my room and meals until the end of term?

Yes, per the residence halls contract addendum, the residence halls contract is for the entirety of fall term.


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.  


Does reduced density mean there might not be enough rooms for students?  

We anticipate having residence hall availability for all students registering to live in the residence halls.