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Covid-19 Student Guidelines

The Covid-19 Student Guidelines should be referred to regularly by undergraduates and postgraduates for the latest rules and guidance for life at St John’s College during the pandemic.

They are intended to be used in parallel with The Student Handbook which is an important and comprehensive source of information for our student community. The rules in the Student Handbook may sometimes depart from the Covid-19 Student Guidelines in various ways throughout the year, sometimes for short periods of time and sometimes at short notice.

Anyone who is in any doubt about the rules and principles that govern College life during the 2020/21 academic year should contact their Tutor, Student Services, the Lead Clinical Nurse or the Porters.


A College Covid ‘Silver’ Group and a ‘Gold’ Group manage the College’s response to Covid-19.

The Gold Group, made up of members of the College Council and chaired by the Master, is responsible for the College’s strategic decision making. The Silver Group manages the day-to-day Covid-19 operational decisions and is chaired by the Domestic Bursar.

Conduct during the pandemic

The University of Cambridge and the individual Colleges have worked together during the Covid-19 pandemic to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of the entire community. The Covid-19 virus brings significant risks in terms of public health and mitigating these risks is the responsibility of us all. The University has issued a Covid-19 Student Community Statement which represents a commitment by all members of the collegiate University community to behave in a way that minimises the risk of spreading the virus.

Think carefully about reducing all opportunities for infection and read the University Coronavirus guidance for further information on how you can manage your time in Cambridge as safely as possible.

Please follow government advice about staying alert and safe. While living in College you are sharing a space with others who are in vulnerable categories including Fellows who are over 70, and fellow students and staff with underlying health issues. We expect you to behave appropriately. Please maintain a distance of two metres from others and do not gather in groups of more than six. In some areas, there is a one-way system in place and there are booking systems for many activities.  Please have your College card on you at all times as you may be asked to produce it to confirm that you are a member of St John's. Do respect these requirements and look out for changes in the guidelines which will occur from time to time.

Wearing a face covering

Face coverings should be worn in all parts of the College, whether inside College buildings or moving around the College site, and this includes the Buttery, the Library, the Chapel, in corridors, stairwells, and Courts. This applies to all members of St John’s College and to visitors to the College unless you have an exemption.

Face coverings provide protection for other people where it is not possible to maintain appropriate social distancing. Two washable face coverings are available for all students, and each mask comes in a resealable plastic bag and includes fitting and washing instructions. You may wish to supplement this supply with your own face coverings.

Read the full Face Coverings Policy

Guidance on how to wear a face covering


UK Government regulations currently require a quarantine period to be undertaken by people upon arrival in the country. Some countries and territories are exempt from this requirement and no quarantine is required for travellers from these areas.

Find out whether you may be required to quarantine on arrival in the UK and, if so, please read and follow the guidelines provided for quarantining students.

College events and visitors

During the Covid-19 pandemic the College remains closed to members of the public, College and University alumni and all those who do not have specific business here.  

The policy focuses on members of the College community and on visitors. ‘Members of the College community’ in this policy means: current Fellows; current staff including College Teaching Associates; current students, including those resident in College hostels or furnished lets; and widows and widowers of former Fellows. 

Anyone not falling within this definition, such as alumni, former Fellows, former staff, the family and friends of Fellows, residents or staff, is considered a visitor for the purpose of this policy.  Any visitor with specific business in the College are asked to check in on arrival at the Porters’ Lodge.

The College will do everything that is reasonable and proportionate to keep people safe.  We require members of the College community and any permitted visitors to comply with government policy to reduce the transmission of Covid-19.  

Read the full policy

For guidelines on organising student events, please refer to the Socities section in the Facilities and Co-Curricular menu below.

Test and Trace

St John’s College has a dedicated Test and Trace system in place to ensure that households and the contacts of those who test positive for Covid-19 or are symptomatic swiftly receive the appropriate advice and support.

Anyone using the College Bar or Hall will be asked to scan our QR code on entry which will take them to our Test and Trace form so we can act quickly if a case is identified and stop the spread of Covid-19.

NHS advice for those sharing a household with someone who has Covid-19 symptoms or has tested positive for Covid-19 is simple: self-isolate and follow the guidance. If you are a contact of someone who has contracted Covid-19, you only need to self-isolate if you have been informed by NHS Test & Trace to do so.  A ‘contact’ is a person who has been close to someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 anytime from two days before the person was symptomatic up to 10 days from onset of symptoms. However, because the College community is one in which infection can travel swiftly we have implemented our own contact tracing within the College which complements the NHS system but will allow St John’s to act very quickly if a case is identified.

Read our full Test and Trace guidance (download)

Academic Arrangements


Face to face in-person small-group teaching is one of the principal features of a Cambridge education. It plays a key part in creating a special academic experience. St John’s is therefore committed to encourage it as much as possible, as long as the arrangements are compatible with protecting the physical and mental health and wellbeing of teachers, supervisors and students.

We continue to try to provide face to face in-person teaching, supervisions and Direction of Studies meetings, where these are possible. Risk assessments, policies and protocols are in place to maximise the safety, comfort and quality of in-person sessions, held in supervisors' sets and in many of the College's public rooms. Work continues to optimise the ways in which teaching and learning can function on-line. We continue to co-ordinate/work with arrangements made by faculties and departments, and anticipate that a combination of in-person and on-line teaching will be offered through Lent Term 2021. Please continue to look out for messages from your Director of Studies, your Tutor, your supervisors, the Academic Administrator for your subject and your faculty or department on these matters. And please read the Friday College Bulletin which is sent to you by email, and keep an eye on the website too.

Those attending face to face meetings should bear in mind our mutual responsibilities to keep one another safe. They should please follow the guidelines given and should not attend if they are feeling unwell.


Returning to accommodation

If you are a student returning to St John’s College accommodation here are some things of which you should be aware:

  • The College has conducted a risk assessment of its site and accommodation.
  • The College has put in place proportionate measures to mitigate against the current risks.
  • Targeted and increased cleaning of all communal areas in College is being conducted and cleaning materials are available for those who live off-site.
  • Social distancing measures are in place in certain areas of College – please adhere to them.
  • Hand cleaning facilities are widely available.


In common with all other Colleges, to mitigate the risk arising from Covid-19, students are being grouped in ‘student households’ for accommodation purposes. Students living within a household will share dedicated kitchen, toilet and washing facilities. 

Should a member of the household contract the virus or have any symptoms and need to self-isolate then the entire household will be required to self-isolate in line with government guidance and College advice (full details of the self-isolation procedure and support are set out in the Health and Welfare section below). In the event of a spike in the virus in Cambridge where lockdown is required, the household will be required to self-isolate together unless a University or College decision is taken that it is safer to return home. 

Some activities in College where social distancing is difficult may be arranged by household to reduce the risk of contracting or spreading the virus through creating new contacts.

Termly rental periods

All students in residence have been sent an updated student room licence. This allows full use of rooms from seven days before the start of Michaelmas Full Term (29 September 2020) until 26 June 2021 (undergraduates) or from arrival until 31 August 2021 (postgraduates).

College gates

The Great Gate entrance to the College is closed as are all gates at the rear of College. Entrance to the College is currently via the Forecourt entrance in Bridge St, the Forecourt wicket gate (8am – 5:30pm), or via Cripps Lodge. The gate by Cripps into Magdalene College is also locked.

Mail collection

Parcel/mail collection is available from the Great Gate Porters’ Lodge from 7.30am-10pm Monday to Friday, and 9am-10pm Saturday and Sunday.

Student accommodation in the case of further lockdowns

In the case of a second or local lockdown, the University and the Colleges will, as ever, be guided by the advice of PHE and the country's legislation. Within these limits, Colleges are committed to provide accommodation to all students, on a case‐by‐case basis, who do not have any other home to go to, for example care‐leavers, estranged students, and UK or international students who cannot travel to their own home town/country due to local travel restrictions.

Safety and Security

Porters are on duty 24/7 to support all students and to ensure the College site and outside hostels are safe and secure. The Forecourt Porters’ Lodge and Cripps Lodge are open 24/7. Please report any security or safety concerns you have by phoning 01223 338671 or emailing


Cleaning in College

College Housekeeping staff, or bedders, are responsible for the cleaning of College rooms and communal areas in hostels, but not hostel rooms. All communal areas are cleaned daily, with most cleaning completed by the afternoon.

All College rooms have been deep cleaned over the vacation and additional hand sanitiser stations have been installed across the College. Assessments have been made of the capacity of meeting rooms under social distancing guidelines and of other social and essential communal spaces.

Please note that you will be asked to take responsibility, in addition to the Housekeeping service, for the cleanliness of the room allocated to you, and to maintain high levels of hygiene in any bathroom or kitchen facilities that you share with your household.

Cleaning routines

Cleaning student communal accommodation areas

Student communal kitchens and bathrooms will be cleaned once a day Monday to Friday (Cripps, Corfield Court and outside College hostels). This will include all door handles, sinks, taps, cupboard fronts and floors in kitchens, and door handles toilet, sinks, taps, and floors in bathrooms. All bins will be emptied in these communal areas at this visit.  Additional waste bags will be left for you to use if needed. This cleaning will take place in the morning and students will be required to leave the area whilst Housekeeping staff carry out their duties.

A general sanitising cleaning product and/or disposable cleaning cloths/paper towels will be available for students to use following their use of the kitchen and bathrooms to keep the areas clean in between visits from Housekeeping – please refer to the Waste Management Policy for further information.

Cleaning student rooms inside College (and kitchens/bathrooms if within)

All student rooms inside College will be cleaned once every two weeks. Students will need to vacate their room whilst the cleaning takes place. This is for approximately 30 minutes per visit.

Kitchens: Please ensure the sink and work surfaces are cleared to enable the work to be carried out. The occupant is responsible for washing up. Cleaning will include all door handles, sinks, taps, cupboard fronts and floors in kitchens, and door handles, toilet, sinks, taps and floors in bathrooms.  All bins will be emptied with the exception of the food waste caddy, as emptying and cleaning the caddy is the responsibility of the user – please refer to the Waste Management Policy for further information. Additional waste bags will be left for you to use if needed.

As per usual working practice, there will be no cleaning of student rooms in College hostels or Corfield Court; this will continue to be the responsibility of the room occupant.

Cleaning Guidance

Guidance on the cleaning of kitchens, bathrooms and toilets


Maintenance will be operating a paperless job ticketing system for the foreseeable future. Please report all issues through the College intranet or email Operatives will no longer leave an attendance paper form in your room once a task has been completed. You may be asked for a contact number to arrange access to your room at a pre-arranged time. If you are not comfortable with an operative entering your room please indicate this when reporting your job.

A new Maintenance reporting system will be introduced shortly; further information will follow.

All Maintenance operatives will wear face coverings in occupied rooms and buildings. All Maintenance contractors will wear identification badges to prove they have been fully Covid-19 inducted and wear PPE when appropriate.

Facilities & Co-Curricular


It important to allow access to practice facilities where possible and safe for anyone in College who wishes to use them. In addition, certain rooms have been prioritised for those reading Music as they will, inevitably, need greater access to these facilities. The New Music Room will remain bookable for small groups but only through the Music Administrator Sophie Kirk,, so that the College can keep a tighter control over this area which might be more likely to be open to misuse and larger gatherings.

We ask that all students use hand santiser before entering a music practice room. There will be wipes available in each room to wipe the keyboard and music stands before and after each use. Please leave the windows open after your session to allow adequate ventilation before the next use.

  • Fisher Building Music Rooms 1 & 4 are available for those studying Music only. They should book in the usual way, through the online booking system. No one else will be able to book these rooms. The days have been divided into 2 hour slots and each slot may only have one person booking it. A 30 minute ‘ventilation’ gaps has been put in between each bookable slot.
  • Fisher Building Music Rooms 2 & 3 are available for other students (and we ask that Music students do not book these rooms). They should book in the usual way, through the online booking system, but for the first time of use they should be booked through Sophie Kirk, Once booked, keys for the rooms should be signed out from Cripps Porters Lodge. The days have been divided into 1 hour slots and each slot may only have one person booking it. 30 ‘ventilation’ gaps have been put in between each bookable slot.
  • The NMR is bookable, in advance, through the Music Administrator, This space should be saved for Chamber rehearsals and singing.
  • Students are asked not to invite others into rooms (except for purposes of accompanying) and not to book rooms for others. Capacity for each room is marked clearly on each door. Singers must abide by the rules of only having ONE other person in the room to accompany them. They should sing ‘away from’ their accompanist.
  • The Band Room and Equipment Cupboard in the Fisher Basement will remain closed. Should any students need access or to borrow equipment this must be requested well in advance by contacting the Music Administrator, It is not guaranteed that this permission will be granted, but each case will be considered individually.



The JCR and the SBR are currently closed. 

Guidelines to organising student events, meetings and activities in College

The College recognises that interacting socially and creatively with other students is an important part of College life. Such activities are guided by the terms laid out in the Student Handbook. In the current context of Covid-19, it is necessary to provide some additional guidelines to enable these activities to continue safely. 

We expect the College’s wide range of clubs and societies to continue operating either on-line or face to face. It may also be possible for some student-led activities of more than six people to take place in College where they are organised in consultation with the College or the Officer responsible for maintaining a Covid-19 secure venue. Otherwise, they will need to take place online or in a hybrid way, with six or fewer people in person and others online. 

All rooms in College have been assessed to establish how many people can safely be accommodated under Covid social distancing rules. This information is provided on the Room Booking System. Please note that priority in booking will be given to meetings for academic purposes such as supervisions and lectures.

Due to Covid restrictions, all organised events in College will need a risk assessment. As part of this, you will need to think about risks within the planning meetings as well as at the event itself. 

Draft generic risk assessment (download)

Specific risk assessment for Performing Arts events (download)

A:  Organising a student-led event in College

Events include speaker meetings, committee meetings, debates, workshops, receptions, social events such as quizzes or networking events, taster events, arts and crafts, performing arts, sports competitions, parties etc. If in doubt, please ask. 

STEP 1:  Consult the College at a very early stage

Do not assume that the College is going to host an event without discussing the outline with the relevant College Department/person, before you even create the risk assessment. Please ensure that you have spoken to the relevant person at least 2-3 weeks before the event. If in doubt about who to ask, please consult Student Services (general enquiries) or the Academic Administrators (Societies). 

Identify the location you want to use and ask to see the relevant College Risk Assessment. It may help you construct yours and will reassure you that the appropriate precautions are in place. Please note that some locations e.g. the Playing Fields have specific published guidance on their use on the College website.

Include the College’s suggestions in your plans. Respect and obey their rules, even if these are more stringent than government restrictions.   

Establish if you need formal approval from the College Covid Silver Group or from Council and build the necessary time into your plans.

STEP 2:   Consider non-Covid-19 risks (fire, trip hazards, travel, injury, third-party liability). 

STEP 3:  Think through your event’s stages, from pre-event planning to post-event clearing up. If you will need to clear litter or clean rooms then anti-Covid-19 precautions must be taken during those stages as well as during the event itself.  If you are considering any food or drink provision, please consult with the Catering department as there are specific Covid-19 requirements to follow under the government guidelines.

STEP 4:  Finalise your risk assessment and submit it to College for approval.

STEP 5:  Make sure all your organising team have read the risk assessment and have taken responsibility for the areas they are in charge of. 

STEP 6:  Ensure that you know who is at the event in case Covid cases are diagnosed in some of your attendees after a face-to-face event (including a committee meeting). Prompt contact (track and trace) after diagnoses will help avoid a large local spike in infections.

B: Informal and spontaneous meetings

Students will gather together for a wide range of purposes. This can vary from a casual social get together to an impromptu music rehearsal or a group working together to develop an idea or plan. In the context of Covid-19, under the government guidelines, students who are meeting others from different households informally for social or creative activities must observe the following:

  • meet in groups of 6 or less
  • follow social distancing rules when you meet up and wear a face covering where 2m distancing cannot be observed
  • limit how many different people you see socially over a short period of time
  • meet people outdoors where practical: meeting people outdoors is safer than meeting people indoors because fresh air provides better ventilation
  • if indoors, ensure that the room/venue you choose is of a sufficient size to accommodate your group activity. The Room Booking System will give you a guide but some activities e.g. singing, playing brass instruments, some indoor exercise activities need more significant distancing than others
  • follow the government guidelines for the activities you are undertaking. Useful websites are:

Music and Theatre


For specific sports, consult the National Sport Association or England Hockey, etc.

C:  Events that you think fall outside either of A or B above

If you are involved in any event that falls outside these guidelines and have concerns, please consult Student Services for more specific advice. 


Fitness Centre

The Fitness Centre is open daily, and the opening hours are 6am until 10pm, Monday to Sunday.

It has been necessary to make some changes to the normal operation to manage social distancing and effective infection control. These changes are highlighted below and must be strictly adhered to:

  • A maximum of four people will be permitted to use the Fitness Centre at any one time.
  • One hour bookable slots will be available. Slots can be booked last minute as long as one is available.
  • Access into the area will only be possible by booking a slot and retrieving an access card from the Cripps Porters’ Lodge. Individual card access has been revoked.
  • If you have booked a slot and can no longer use it, please ensure you cancel it so that everyone who wishes to use the Fitness Centre is able to.
  • Hand sanitisers will be available both inside and outside the entrance.
  • The Fitness Centre will be segregated into four zones where only one user is permitted in each zone at any one time.
  • Social distancing must be maintained when moving from one zone to another.
  • All users are required to clean all touch points of equipment before and after use with the cleaning materials provided throughout the Fitness Centre.
  • The shower will be locked and will not be in use, so College members are asked to ensure they arrive dressed to use the equipment.
  • The water fountain will not be in use so College members are asked to bring their own drinks with them and remove them at the end of their session.
  • Dumbbells and mats will not be available for use. College Members are permitted to bring their own.

Unfortunately, inductions for new users will not be available until after 2 November 2020. Further information on this will be circulated in due course. This means that only those who have previously been authorised to use the Fitness Centre will be permitted to book a slot.

The Free Weights Area will remain closed until further notice.

Playing fields and sports in general

In light of the current climate it has been necessary to make some changes to the normal operation on the playing fields to manage social distancing and maintain effective infection control. These are highlighted below. Please note, however, all rules for sport are changing daily and at the time of writing, these details were correct. However, please check back here weekly for any changes.

General Health & Safety Guide for the Playing Fields

For all sports:

  • It is imperative that any person who is showing any symptoms (a new, continuous cough, a high temperature, loss of, or change in, your sense of taste) does not come to the ground to play sport under any circumstances.  If you feel ill in this way, please complete the College online form and follow the advice in the Key information for isolation or quarantine due to Covid-19
  • All pitches (for matches and social games) must now be pre-booked before play by email: or phone: 0770 453 7496. You can check the availability of pitches on the Sharepoint page, and please also read the Use of astro/hard courts in Lent Term 2021 webpage to see which courts are available and at which times, and which sports are played at certain times. On booking, you will be given your time slot and told which pitch to use. Before arrival, you must inform those participating in the game the pitch you will be using.
    Please also read the Covid-19 advice and guidance for the use of hard courts.
  • The government ‘rule of six’ applies for all gatherings before and after playing.  You must not mingle in groups of more than 6 before and after sports activity. You should also ensure you socially distance from people you do not live with wherever possible.
  • The changing rooms (including showers and internal toilets) in the Pavilion will remain closed.  All players must come changed and appropriately dressed for the sport they are playing. 
  • Hand sanitisers will be located at the entrance to the pavilion, Astro pitch and hard courts. Please use these when entering and leaving the site. 
  • There is one external toilet which can be used for hand washing.  This is located on the side of the pavilion.  Please observe the hand sanitisation guidelines displayed at the location.
  • The playing of any field sport under Covid-19 rules is governed by the National Association of the relevant sport.  Please ensure that you have checked the guidelines for your sport before playing.
  • When playing sports informally (i.e. where not organised by your team captain or coach) with people you don’t live with, by law, you must limit the size of your group to 6.

Playing a match

  • If you are playing a match, the home captain must contact the opposition captain and ensure that they have recorded the list of names and contact numbers of their team (for Track and Trace purposes) and they know which pitch you will be using.
  • On arrival on the playing fields, all sports participants must take their belongings straight to one of the marked areas located by the pitch. Please ensure there is no congregating around the pavilion building.
  • Each captain or vice-captain will be responsible for recording the name and contact details of every player in their team and, if playing a match, the name and contact details of the opposition captain and any match officials. This information should be kept for a maximum of 30 days. Thereafter, it can be deleted.
  • Each team is limited to the number of people who can be at the match, as set out in the relevant risk assessment for your sport.  No spectators will be allowed during play during the initial weeks of term.
  • At the beginning and start of each game there must be no hand shaking.  Social distancing must be maintained at all times except where the specific risk assessment for the sport permits otherwise during play.
  • Whilst the match is being played, conduct on the pitch must be as set out in the risk assessment.  Players should not shout and there is to be no celebrating of goals or spitting.
  • Each captain will be given a small kit bag containing equipment for the relevant sport played. Once the sports activity/match has ended, each captain must arrange for all equipment used to be sanitised prior to being used again.


Punt hire is available. Punts will be cleaned from 10am each day ready for hiring, and availability is limited so bookings are restricted to current students, staff and Fellows. Please see the Porters' homepage for bookings, and read the punting hire guidelines. This will also be available on the St John's Punt Society webpage.


From 8 January 2021 until further notice, the Library is offering zero-contact services only.

For full details please visit the Library homepage.



Freshers' information

For those new to the Library and its resources, a virtual tour and a range of PDF guides are available on the Working Library webpages


Chapel services take place during Full Term and attendance is currently restricted to resident members of the College and staff only. For the purposes of the College’s Covid-19 guidelines, current members of the College are considered to be current Fellows; current staff including College Teaching Associates; current students, including those resident in College hostels or furnished lets; and widows and widowers of former Fellows.

Anyone not falling within this definition, such as alumni, former Fellows, former staff, the family and friends of Fellows, residents or staff, is considered a visitor for the purposes of the current guidelines. The rules around who can access Chapel services will be regularly reviewed.  

The service list can be found on the Chapel page, and may be subject to occasional changes due to circumstances.

The College Chapel is also open for private prayer from 9am until 5pm. Entry and exit is via the Chapel Court doors. Seating has been designated to allow for social distancing, and hand sanitiser is available on entry. Regular and ongoing cleaning will continue in the Chapel.

The Chaplain, The Rev’d Andrew Hammond, can be contacted at and on 07917 535940. Canon Mark Oakley, the Dean of Chapel, can be contacted on

Catering & Bar

The Buttery Dining Room (BDR) serves a hot meal for students, staff and Fellows. It is open for breakfast on Wednesdays only from 8am-10am, daily for lunch from 11.30am to 2.30pm, and again for dinner from 5.30pm to 8pm, currently for takeaway meals only. Saturday brunch will be served from 12.30pm-2.30pm every week. Advance booking is not required. Entry to the BDR is from K staircase 2nd Court and the exit is via the BDR Patio.

An Order Ahead service is available from the College Bar - see below.

The Hall is available to sit down to eat in once you have your takeaway food from the Buttery Dining Room. You will need to scan a test and trace QR code to go into the Hall. The staff inside the Hall will direct you where to sit; please follow their instructions. These areas will be cleaned before anyone else can sit in that seat/ area.

There are two sanitising stations outside the Buttery Dining Room as you make your way in, and it is recommended that all members of the College use them before entering the Buttery Dining Room. There are also sanitiser stations set up in the College Bar and Hall. 

Face coverings must be worn at all times whilst in the BDR when collecting food and until you are seated in the Hall.

Order Ahead

The College Bar will operate as a grocery shop and will be open from 10am to 6pm. It is possible to use the Order Ahead system via Upay to buy groceries or you can pop in during opening hours. It is also possible to use Order Ahead service for a cold lunch and dinner and collect from the College Bar during these times. The entrance is via K staircase. See the Buttery page for full details and learn how to open a Upay account to use this service. 

The College Bar

The Bar will be open as a space for study but it can no longer serve alcoholic beverages. Table bookings are not required; it will be on a first come, first served basis, but tables are only available for people in households, with your support bubble, or as single use.

Tea, coffee, non-alcoholic drinks, pastries, and homemade cakes will be available to purchase from the Bar from 10am to 10pm Monday-Sunday (subject to change) and can also be taken away to eat/drink in the marquee in Second Court.

Bar Floor plan 

Bar service/payment procedure

There is a procedure for those self-isolating; see Health and Welfare below.

Health and Welfare


Currently the College Nurses and College Counsellor are holding consultations via telephone or video link due to Covid-19; these can be booked via Moodle when term begins or via direct email: Emma Manuel, Lead Clinical Nurse:; Karen Miles, Health and Wellbeing Nurse:; Susie Renshaw, College Counsellor: The email address health& can be used to reach either Nurse. The Disability Resource Centre (DRC) and University Counselling Service (UCS) are also holding consultations via telephone or video links.

Handwashing and sanitising

Additional hand sanitiser stations have been installed across the College. Please follow these steps regarding hand washing or the use of hand sanitiser when hand washing cannot be performed.

Taking your temperature

Thermometers are available in the Porters’ Lodges. Please read the guidance on using the thermometers to take your temperature effectively.


You must self-isolate for a minimum of 10 days if you develop a new continuous cough, shortness of breath, a loss of taste or smell, and/or a fever greater than 37.8C.

You must also self-isolate for a minimum of 10 days if you have received a positive test result, regardless of symptoms, or have been alerted by the track and trace service as having been in recent close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, or have been advised to isolate by a health care professional pending your test result.

You must complete our online form to report your symptoms/circumstances to the Health & Wellbeing Centre and the Porters. We will then provide specific advice for your individual circumstance. Please also consult the Government advice.

College Covid-19 symptom/contact reporting form

Key information for isolation or quarantine due to Covid-19

Student guide on ordering food and provisions whilst in self-isolation

Testing for Covid-19

Testing is a key part of the University’s strategy for keeping its staff, workplaces and the wider community safe. The University offers swab tests to College and University staff and students, as well as staff at Cambridge Assessment and Cambridge University Press, who have possible symptoms of Covid-19. If you have symptoms of Covid-19 you should arrange a test immediately. Tests should now be booked online via the web portal, not via the Addenbrooke’s Hospital Occupational Health phone line.

When booking, you can select to take a test at one of two locations:

  • S2 Testing Pods, Addenbrooke's Hospital – 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. These pods are only accessible by car, or bike while wearing a mask. If you are already on the Biomedical Campus, you can access the pods on foot while wearing a mask.
  • Dyson Building, Department of Engineering, Fen Causeway entrance – 8.30am to 2.45pm, Monday to Friday. Accessible by bike or foot while wearing a mask. Access by car is possible but very limited.

Maps showing the locations of these testing pods can be found here.

If you develop symptoms after the closure of the Pod on Friday, or any time on Saturday or Sunday, or cannot access either of these two locations, you can arrange a test at an alternative location using the NHS website.

For enquiries about what to do if you or a member of your household has symptoms of Covid-19, please visit the Stay Safe Cambridge Uni website or contact the University’s dedicated Covid-19 helpdesk by phone 01223 339514 or email 

Symptoms which you should be aware of, and which you should act on to request a test for Covid-19, now ONLY include one or more of the following:

  • High temperature: this means a feeling of feverishness, or a measured temperature higher than 37.8C.
  •  New cough: this means a new intermittent or persistent cough, or worsening of your usual cough if you have one.
  • Loss or change in your sense of taste or smell, particularly in the absence of nasal congestion.

Should you develop any of these symptoms, please self-isolate immediately, and notify the College using our Symptom Reporting Form. We would like students, Fellows and staff to let us know if you develop symptoms.

Anyone who has Covid-19 symptoms and has not yet returned to Cambridge should self-isolate at home and not return to College until the full 10 days of quarantine has been completed.

Weekly asymptomatic testing programme for students

From the start of Michaelmas Term, all undergraduate and postgraduate students at the University of Cambridge living in College accommodation will be offered a weekly test for infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, even if they show no symptoms. Further information on the asymptomatic screening programme. 

Care for students in self-isolation

The College is committed to ensuring all quarantining and self or house isolating students are provided for. Whilst quarantining or isolating it is not permitted to use the College facilities or public areas.

For those in quarantine, Tutors will check in with new students by email and offer a Zoom or Skype meeting soon after you begin your quarantine to introduce themselves and discuss any concerns you may have. You may contact them by email at any time after your arrival to ask questions or request a follow-up meeting. If your Tutor is on holiday when you arrive we will put you in touch with another Tutor to provide support while you are in quarantine. You may also contact the Health and Wellbeing Centre health& .

For those in self-isolation who are current students, you should nominate two self-isolation supporters from outsider your immediate household and vicinity who can provide help and assistance.  If you have not done so already, please let the College know who your self-isolation supporters will be. If you are unable to name two self-isolation supporters, the SBR or JCR Presidents will be able to assist in nominating self-isolation supporters who are willing to assist you during this time. Your Tutor will also ensure that they are available to provide support during this time.

The College will provide meals and access to basic groceries from a ‘shop’ style set up in College which will be available via click and collect, to be collected by your supporter. This will also provide basic toiletries/washing powder etc. Students would be charged as per normal for these facilities via Upay. You can arrange for food to be delivered to one of the Porters Lodges, but it must be collected for you.

Key information for students supporting those in self-isolation/quarantine

Student guide on ordering food and provisions whilst in self-isolation