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Keeping safe on campus

At UCL, your health and wellbeing are paramount. Our priority at all times is to make sure our campus is as safe as possible, minimise the risk to everyone onsite, and follow UK official guidance.

On this page you can find information about the safety measures we’re putting in place on campus and what you can do to help keep everyone safe. Visit the Government and NHS websites and download the NHS COVID-19 App for the most up to date information about what to do if you feel unwell and what you can do to avoid spreading the virus.

New national restrictions from 5 November

In line with Government guidance for universities, from 5 November UCL will remain open, continuing to operate in a COVID-secure way.  Our libraries, study spaces, halls of residence and some limited takeaway catering facilities will remain open. Research labs will remain open for those who need to continue research on site; this will be on a voluntary basis and where research requires equipment or facilities which are only available on campus. Gatherings with research participants which are not crucial during the period of the restrictions should be conducted remotely or rescheduled. 

We have heard from students how valuable the opportunity connect with staff and their peers through face-to-face learning is, and we know how education activity and contact with others is beneficial to mental health, so we intend to continue with as much face-to-face provision as is feasible, whilst acknowledging that this may be less than we had originally planned for.

Remember, you must stay at home and use the UCL Connect to Protect reporting tool if:  you think you may have coronavirus; you have tested positive for the virus; you are waiting for the results of a coronavirus test; or you need to self-isolate.

Report a potential case

How we are protecting our staff and students, and what you can do to help

How UCL is keeping you safe

We are working hard with our recognised unions and taking advice from UCL’s world-leading researchers to make sure our campus is as safe as possible: 

How you can make a difference

The measures UCL is putting in place won’t be enough on their own. We also need your help to prevent the spread of infection and keep our community safe. This means that everyone on campus must:  

  • Stay at home if you feel unwell and use the UCL Connect to Protect tool if you have symptoms of coronavirus, are self-isolating or have tested positive for coronavirus
  • Keep your distance and stay 2m from others wherever possible 
  • Follow the new one-way system and seating plans 
  • Wear face coverings around others
  • Wash your hands frequently and don’t touch your face or mask 
  • Always sneeze or cough into a tissue, throw it away and wash your hands 
  • Take your temperature at least once a day to check you don’t have a fever 
  • Hold meetings on Microsoft Teams or Zoom, not face-to-face in meeting rooms 
  • Please be considerate of others and follow our Community Commitment to Protect Each Other
  • Download the NHS COVID-19 app and scan into any buildings that display an NHS QR code
What should I do if I - or someone I manage or supervise – may have coronavirus?

Follow our step-by-step guide to reporting and responding to potential cases of coronavirus.

How will I know if someone in my class or department, or someone I work with, tests positive for coronavirus?

UCL has introduced a range of measures to ensure campus is as safe as possible and reduce the risk of transmission of the virus, including ensuring our teaching, studying and workspaces are socially distanced. This means there is a very low chance that you will be in close contact with someone who has tested positive. 

If an individual reports that they have tested positive through UCL Connect to Protect, our case managers will follow up the report and speak with them to identify anyone who has potentially been in close contact with them. This will be decided on a case-by-case basis. 

If someone who has tested positive has been keeping safe on campus by social distancing and wearing a face covering on campus, it is unlikely that anyone at UCL will be a close contact and therefore they will not be automatically contacted and asked to self-isolate. In these circumstances, other staff and students will only be informed if the affected individual gives their consent. 

However, where someone has tested positive and they have not been able to socially distance, anyone who has been in close contact with them will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace or notified through the NHS COVID-19 app. If they have reported that they have tested positive through UCL Connect to Protect, our case managers will speak to the individual to identify and contact staff or students who have potentially been in close contact with them.

Please note, there is no requirement for other staff or students to self-isolate or work from home unless they have been contacted and told to do so by NHS Test and Trace.

If you have any questions about UCL Connect to Protect or you think you’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, students can contact us though the askUCL student enquiries system. Members of staff can contact us via our online form or alternatively you can email covidhelpline@ucl.ac.uk. If you would like to speak to someone on the phone, please call our helpline on 0203 108 5699. Lines are open 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday.

What if someone isn’t following UCL’s guidelines for keeping safe on campus? 

We will all need to support each other as we get used to this “new normal” but we expect everybody to follow our Community Commitment to Protect Each Other. If you notice that someone has made a mistake and overlooked these guidelines, please let them know in a friendly and polite way. Or if someone reminds you of your own slip, please don’t take offence – we're all just trying to keep everyone safe. 

If you’re worried that a student isn’t following the safety measures we’ve put in place, you can let UCL know by contacting srs@ucl.ac.uk

If you’re concerned about a member of staff not following these measures, please notify us by through RiskNET.

Key information, guidance and policies

covid-19 research

Testing, reporting and managing potential cases at UCL

What to do if you or a member of your team feels unwell, has symptoms, tests positive for coronavirus or have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

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Keeping safe around campus and Camden

We have introduced a new Zoning system for the Bloomsbury campus to support social distancing and are working in partnership with local agencies and services to keep our community safe

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Support for disabled staff and students

UCL is committed to supporting disabled staff and students and to ensuring our return to campus is done in an inclusive way.

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Social distancing

We have risk-assessed all our buildings and spaces to determine where we should use 1 metre and 2 metre social distancing.  

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Wearing face coverings on campus

UCL's policies on wearing face coverings on campus, information about exemptions and other circumstances, and guidance on how to make and properly use face coverings.

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Reducing the risk of transmission through cleaning and building ventilation

We are following the latest Government and UK Health and Safety Executive guidelines, and drawing on the latest research, to ensure that our buildings are as safe as possible and properly ventilated.

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Information for UCL students

Information, advice and support for UCL students about joining or returning to campus following the coronavirus outbreak.

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Information for UCL Staff

Key information, advice and support for UCL staff including FAQs, remote working and education planning support, when to return to work on campus and resources for managers

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The UCL Community Commitment to Protect Each Other

The UCL Community Commitment to Protect Each Other sets out the expectations of all members of our community as we start the new academic year 2020-21 during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Further questions

If you have a specific question about your individual circumstances please speak to your department or line manager in the first instance. If you have a more general question, please check that it has not already been answered through our Coronavirus FAQs or Keeping Safe on Campus webpages

Students can contact us though the askUCL student enquiries system. Members of staff can contact us via our online form or alternatively you can email covidhelpline@ucl.ac.uk. If you would like to speak to someone on the phone, please call our helpline on 0203 108 5699. Lines are open 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday.