Undergraduate Students

This page was updated 12/31/2021.

For the latest general Duke information related to COVID-19 testing and other health news, visit https://coronavirus.duke.edu/updates/for-students/

Here is the message sent on Jan. 31, 2021.

If you have a COVID-related question or concern, you may submit your question through the Duke United website at: https://returnto.duke.edu/contact/.

The keeplearning@duke.edu email account is not being monitored. If you have a COVID-related question or concern, you may submit your question through the Duke United website at: https://returnto.duke.edu/contact/; otherwise, please see the appropriate campus resources below.

– The Keep Learning Team

If this is an emergency, contact Duke Police: 
919-684-2444; https://police.duke.edu/

If you are an on-campus student with a question about building access or other urgent needs:

Contact the RA/RC on call

For other housing information, visit HRL’s website:


For undergraduate student surveillance testing information:

The best single source of testing answers is on the Return to Duke Covid 19 Testing Contact page. Scroll down to FAQs: Surveillance Testing During Semester.

Where are the testing locations and hours? On the Return to Duke COVID-19 info sites page.

More questions? Email survtest@duke.edu

Isolation for COVID-Positive Undergraduates
  • Undergraduates who test positive will be placed in isolation on campus.
  • Isolation is for students who have already been diagnosed positive with COVID-19.
  • A Duke clinician will determine when a student’s isolation period is complete.
  • For students in Duke-provided housing, isolated students will be moved to separate housing.
  • If isolated, students should not leave their assigned rooms other than to take strolls outside to get air.
  • Students in Duke-provided temporary accommodations will have all meals and snacks provided.
  • Contact tracing will be used to identify other potential positive cases.

For graduate and professional student testing information:  

If you are an international student with questions specific only to international students:  https://keeplearning.duke.edu/international-students/

Or email International House at ihouse@duke.edu 

COVID-19 Vaccine and other immunizations information: 


Student Health contact: 


Duke Dining information: 


DukeCard information: 


or email dukecard@duke.edu

Undergraduate academic information: 



Or contact your academic dean, listed in DukeHub  

Graduate and Professional Student Financial Aid:  

Undergraduate Financial Aid: 


Technical access issues:

Undergraduates can contact OIT-Help desk or The LINK for suggestions.  Undergraduates with demonstrated high financial need may request assistance in the form of loaner laptops, though supplies are limited. For new Fall 2021 technology assistance requests, please go here

If you are a graduate or professional student experiencing laptop problems, try the OIT-Help desk or contact your department/school’s IT team to see if they can be of assistance.

Duke University
Undergraduate Student COVID-19 Policy Plan
(Effective Date: August 6, 2021)


The Duke University Undergraduate Student COVID-19 Policy Plan (“Duke UG COVID-19 Plan” or “Plan”) applies to any undergraduate student who attends in-person courses on campus or utilizes on campus resources, facilities, or services.


Duke University is responding to and managing the changing nature of the global pandemic and what it means for the student experience. This Plan establishes guiding principles as well as student responsibilities and expectations that each student must follow while enrolled in the 2021-22 academic year.

The Guiding Principles of this Duke UG COVID-19 Plan, as it now exists or is later amended:

  • Are rooted in the twin goals to continue the institution’s vital missions of education and research while promoting safety for our students, our faculty and staff, our health care providers, and for the public at large.
  • Are informed by recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), N.C. Department of Public Health, and the Duke Health Advising Team, as implemented by the University.
  • Require compliance with The Duke Community Standard: A Guide for Students (“DCS Guide”), Duke’s guide for student conduct, behavior, and expectations. Duke University has high expectations for students’ scholarship and conduct. Any student planning to access campus this fall indicates their willingness to subscribe to and be governed by the rules and regulations within the DCS Guide, including all additional COVID-19 related University expectations.
  • Require compliance with specific policies for Duke students to use and access University buildings for educational activities during the year.
  • May be updated by Duke and/or supplemented by more specific policies adopted by individual schools or programs, which they will communicate to their students.

Our knowledge and understanding of the COVID-19 virus continues to evolve.  Even with the risk mitigation steps taken by Duke, the risks associated with participating in on-campus activities are not fully foreseeable, and there remain inherent risks of community transmission.  As conditions change this academic year, Duke’s policies, plans, and student expectations will be updated appropriately as more information becomes available. Updated policies, plans and expectations will be available here.

Student Responsibilities & Expectations (may be altered based on changing conditions)

All students are required to comply with all applicable federal, state, or local health and safety laws, orders, ordinances, regulations, and health and safety rules and guidance adopted by the University or Housing as it relates to public health emergencies, including COVID-19.

COVID-19 Testing: All students will be tested for Covid-19 upon arrival at Duke and must then participate in weekly surveillance testing regardless of their vaccination status. Students who have been vaccinated may also be asked to participate in surveillance testing more than once per week based on changing conditions or their individual circumstances. All students who have obtained an exemption from vaccination will be required to participate in surveillance testing at least twice per week. The testing schedule may be modified for each group based on public health data and Duke Health Advising Team recommendations.

Students with questions/concerns about surveillance testing should email survtest@duke.edu.

Vaccination: All students are required to provide proof of vaccination to Student Health or follow exemption rules as a condition of enrollment for the Fall 2021 and/or Spring 2022 semester.

Daily Symptom Monitoring: Fully vaccinated faculty, staff, and students are not required to complete daily symptom monitoring. Anyone who has not been vaccinated, regardless of the circumstances, will be required to complete daily symptom monitoring.

Student Reporting: Any student who is feeling ill, regardless of vaccination status, or has been in close contact with anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, such as roommates or family members, must contact the Duke Student Health COVID Hotline at 919-684-1258. The Student Health COVID Hotline is available seven days per week from 8 am until 8 pm each day. For afterhours assistance please refer to the Student Health website.

Contact Tracing: If a student tests positive for COVID-19, Student Health or another university official may conduct contact tracing to quickly and sensitively identify individuals who could have come in contact with them during the time when they were infectious. This process, which involves testing, quarantine, and symptom monitoring of those contacts, is essential to helping reduce the potential spread of infection. Duke will make use of this information only to further public health goals. Students are required to cooperate fully and honestly with contact tracing and related processes. Students who do not cooperate fully will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards. 

Quarantine/Isolation: Student Health, in consultation with local health authorities as appropriate, will serve as the Duke authority to issue quarantine or isolation directives for students. Students must comply with Student Health’s directives. For students living on campus, Duke Housing & Residence Life, in coordination with other offices at Duke, will work to ensure that students are relocated to appropriate residence hall space designated for isolation and quarantine. Students who are not living in the residence halls will be required to remain off campus in their off-campus property for the designated period of time.

Student Health will determine the scope and duration of the isolation/quarantine directive on a case-by-base basis, based on medical evidence available at the time. The student will NOT be able to attend classes in person during the quarantine or isolation period, nor utilize campus facilities or in-person resources. Duke will work with the student who tests positive to attempt to arrange accommodations where feasible and provide support services.

Face Coverings: Both fully vaccinated and unvaccinated faculty, staff and students will be required to wear a mask in all Duke-owned and leased buildings effective August 1 until further notice.  This policy is subject to change throughout the academic year.  Masks will not be required when an individual is working alone in an office where they are the only occupant. Masks will not be required in on-campus residence halls where there is a significantly lower risk of exposure for high-risk individuals. Because masks are still required in certain settings – including health care facilities, buses and shuttles on campus, and childcare centers – everyone should have a mask ready and available when needed. Also, please respect anyone who chooses to continue wearing masks in outdoor areas as a means to prevent exposure to themselves or loved ones. Masks will be provided to all students as part of the initial testing program. Students who have a medical condition that may affect their ability to wear a cloth mask or face covering should consult with the Student Disability Access Office.

Physical Distancing: Physical distancing is not required on campus at this time, though distancing is still recommended for those who are not vaccinated.

Hand washing: While on campus, you shouldwash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after being in a public place, or after blowing their nose, coughing, sneezing, or touching their face. If soap and water are not readily available, students should wash their hands using a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol by covering all surfaces of the hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Duke has provided hand sanitizer stations throughout campus. Students should avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth, and wash hands again after touching their face.

Traveling Outside of Durham: Effective August 9, 2021, the Duke Travel Suspension due to COVID-19 will no longer apply to domestic travel. Faculty, staff, and students who are fully-vaccinated will once again be allowed to travel with Duke support to U.S. states, territories, and territorial waters. Also, domestic travelers will no longer need to enter their travel into the Duke Travel Registry. Please monitor the travel policy for updates.

Enter/Exit Control: Duke will continue to regulate and monitorentry to all Duke Campus buildings. The DukeCard is required for entry to many buildings, and no one may hold or prop open exterior doors for any other person. Building occupants and residents within residential facilities are expected to follow signage on traffic flow through building entrances, exits, elevator usage and similar common use areas.

Access to certain facilities will be dependent on following symptom monitoring, surveillance testing, and other COVID protocols. Violation of these guidelines may result in the immediate revocation of building and/or campus access privileges, as well as conduct action.

Student Events: In-person public events (meaning any event to which individuals who are not Duke students, faculty, or staff would be invited or expected to attend), and in-person programs for the Duke community, are subject to Student Affairs and University policies and procedures. Please check with sponsoring departments and hosting offices for the latest guidance and regulations.

Duke Dining: Before and after eating, you should wash your hands thoroughly to reduce the potential transmission of the virus. Dining services, including where and how it will be offered to residential students, is subject to the discretion of the University and is subject to modification to address public health concerns. Due to health and safety guidance adopted by campus, Duke Dining may limit the occupancy of dining halls, limit the amount of time students may reside within dining facilities, or make other operational adjustments needed to address health and safety concerns.

Updates to Duke Dining operations and meal options including online ordering, pickup, and in-person dining can be found here: https://studentaffairs.duke.edu/dining

Academic Expectations: Unvaccinatedstudents who received an exemption will not be allowed to attend courses on-campus and/or in-person unless they have submitted their Daily Symptom Monitoring process via SymMon and received their clearance for the day. Academic expectations for each course are outlined within the course syllabus.

The successful conduct of courses depends upon a basic spirit of mutual respect and cooperation among the participants. If a student disrupts a class in such a way that it seriously compromises the educational experience of the course for the students and/or prevents the instructor from accomplishing the goals of the course as outlined in the syllabus, the instructor may require the student to leave the class meeting. The student’s academic dean will be notified of this action. The academic dean may determine that the matter should be referred to the Office of Student Conduct for consideration of formal charges in violation of university policies including “Classroom Disruption,” “Disorderly Conduct,” and/or “Failure to Comply.”

The recording and/or sharing of digital lectures or other online content without the permission of the creator of the content is strictly prohibited.  “Duke University expects all members of the University community to respect copyright law (Title 17 of the United States Code). The principles of copyright law that apply to electronic course content are the same as those that apply to printed course material, regardless of whether the electronic content is textual or audio-visual, or where it is stored (e-reserves, AFS, Sakai, or Box for example). If permission would be required for a print use, it will be required for an analogous electronic use.”  

Request for Accommodations: The Student Disability Access Office is the office on campus charged with assisting qualified students with disabilities in exploring and implementing reasonable accommodations. Students with medical conditions who wish to pursue Temporary COVID-19 accommodations or explore additional accommodations outside of COVID-19 should reach out to the SDAO at http://access.duke.edu for more information.

Time Away: You are encouraged to review Time Away options and request time away if you deem appropriate for your particular circumstances. Students may discuss these options and their implications (e.g., insurance, financial aid, transcript notations) with the Time Away Office and their Academic Dean. To learn more please visit: https://undergrad.duke.edu/timeaway

Accountability: Returning to campus for the upcoming semester is a collective choice that all students must make, particularly with all community members in mind. It will take a collective effort to support the health and well being of our community. Supporting the pathway forward, primary efforts are on setting community expectations, providing appropriate guidance, and compassionately working together through this shared experience. As such, we expect all students to share in the responsibility of holding each other accountable. If you see a member of the community not complying with expectations, address it directly with that person.

If a student is concerned about non-compliance or behaviors of another student that jeopardize the health and safety of the community, a report can be submitted to the Office of Student Conduct online or via email to conduct@duke.edu.

All allegations of student misconduct are subject to The Duke Community Standard: A Guide for Students, Duke’s guide for student conduct, behavior, and expectations. Any student(s) who disregard the local, state, or university COVID-19 expectations may be referred for disciplinary action including, but not limited to removal from on-campus housing, loss of access to campus, or the privilege of attending courses in-person.

The Administrative Action Policy may be utilized to immediately address flagrant violations of COVID-19 policies and expectations that create a health or safety risk to others in the Duke community. Interim measures include, but are not limited to, immediate trespass from campus and in-person learning privileges, to interim suspension, or expulsion.

Student Acknowledgement

  • I have read, understand, and agree to comply with all elements of the Duke Undergraduate COVID-19 Policy Plan, which Duke may update from time-to-time.  
  • I understand that if I fail to comply with the Plan, I may be subject to disciplinary and other administrative actions, including but not limited to removal from or restrictions on access to campus or campus privileges, and other disciplinary sanctions up to and including suspension or expulsion.
  • I agree to allow Duke University to identify and monitor my quarantine or isolation location for care, health, and safety purposes.  I also understand Duke may use data about me to develop approaches for understanding where the virus may be spreading and who is at risk – as well as what steps I need to take to adhere to COVID-19 guidelines and this Plan.  I also understand that the provisions in Duke’s Acceptable Use Policy, Data Usage During COVID-19 apply.

In addition, returnto.duke.edu provides students who return to the Duke campus guidance for health & safety, campus, community, and academic scenarios.

The most recent numbers of identified campus COVID cases can be found here: Duke Covid Testing Tracker

We think many of your questions will be addressed at https://keeplearning.duke.edu/international-students/ but here is some general information.

Duke welcomes all students for in-person teaching in the fall. We expect that in-person will be the dominant form of teaching. There will be some remote classes offered. For these reasons, Duke will continue to operate in hybrid mode for fall. Please check Fall 2021 course listings for course mode of delivery before committing to course registration in July.  For more options, see the International Students Fall 2021 FAQ.

All new and returning Duke students, including international students, are required to present proof of vaccination to Student Health before they can attend classes for the Fall 2021 semester. This policy covers all undergraduate, graduate, and professional students – in all degree programs – who intend to be on the Duke campus for any program starting with the Fall 2021 semester. Documented medical and religious exemptions will be accommodated. Please visit the International Students FAQs Fall 2021 page for more information about vaccines, including which ones will fulfill the proof-of-vaccine requirement. https://keeplearning.duke.edu/international-students/

Answers to your visa questions about Fall 2021 may be found here. If not, please contact the Duke Visa Services Office. Duke Visa Services is located at 1st Floor, Bay 7, Smith Warehouse, 114 South Buchanan Boulevard.  You contact DVS by emailing visahelp@mc.duke.edu or calling (919) 681-8472.

You may also contact Duke’s International House.