Temple is committed to the well-being of all members of our campus community. Each of us has an essential part to play in the effort to keep campus and the surrounding community safe. This effort includes staying informed on the university’s testing and contact-tracing initiatives and policies, and understanding when and how to get tested.
The Temple community must comply with all university protocols and city regulations for the duration of the spring semester. At Temple, this includes obeying protocols for testing, contact tracing, and quarantining and isolating; limitations on social gatherings; and restrictions on guests in university housing. We have every confidence that Temple faculty, students and staff will continue to rise to the occasion and make us proud while keeping each other safe.
The university collects and shares information regarding active COVID-19 cases within the university community. View the COVID-19 dashboard.
As part of the university’s expanded COVID-19 surveillance testing program aimed at keeping students, faculty and staff healthy, Temple University will operate three coronavirus sites on Main Campus. These sites will be located in Mitten Hall, the Student Center and the Paley Building. Students on Main Campus will be able to schedule their appointments at the testing sites in Mitten Hall or the Student Center. The testing site in the Paley Building is designated for Temple employee testing.
Additional testing sites will be located at the Ambler Campus, Health Sciences Center and the School of Podiatric Medicine.
Symptomatic and Close Contact Testing
Just like the fall semester, the testing center at Morgan Hall on Main Campus will remain available for testing those who have COVID-19 symptoms or have been identified by contact tracers as a close contact of someone who tested positive.
Students can schedule an appointment at the Morgan Hall testing center by calling 215-204-7500 and selecting prompt 2 or by using the Patient Health Portal and selecting the Morgan Hall location.
Employees on campus who are experiencing symptoms should call Employee Health Services at 215-204-2679. If employees are working remotely and develop symptoms or are identified as a close contact, they should contact their primary care provider immediately and should not come to campus.
Asymptomatic Testing Sites
Employee Health Services has established a testing site primarily for university employees at the Paley Building on Main Campus. There are also testing sites that employees can use at Mitten Hall and the Student Center on Main Campus, as well as at the Health Sciences Center and Ambler Campus.
All testing is by appointment only, and only faculty and staff members who are eligible for testing as defined above should schedule testing appointments. Use the Health Services Patient Health Portal each week to register for your appointments. The schedule will open every Friday for the following week. It is recommended that you schedule testing on the same days that you come to campus for work, if appointment times are available. To help us keep campus de-densified, we strongly discourage making a special trip to campus solely for a testing appointment.
Testing Sites Locations and Hours
Appointments are required for all tests—walk-in appointments are not available. This is to help keep students safe by avoiding lines or crowding at the testing sites. Students can use the Patient Health Portal to schedule their appointments. If a student has difficulty scheduling an appointment for any reason, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Appointments for all tests will open on Fridays for the following week throughout the semester. For example, students in Groups One and Two will receive an email on Friday, Jan. 22, to schedule their appointments for the week of Jan. 25–29. Again, students in Group One are to schedule their appointments for Monday and Thursday or Tuesday and Friday, leaving Wednesday open for students in Group Two.
Campus testing sites will be open on the spring Wellness Days, Tuesday, Feb. 23, and Wednesday, March 24.
Though the testing sites will be staffed, tests are self-administered. Those who are being tested will be given a test kit, which includes a test tube and nasal swab, and will follow step-by-step instructions to complete the test themselves.
Learn more about what to expect when making an appointment for a self-swab test.
Students will receive test results between 12 and 36 hours after their test. Results for those who have a negative test will be texted or emailed. Students can opt in to receive text messages from Student Health Services by visiting the Forms section of the Patient Health Portal.
Those who receive a positive test result will get a call from a Student Health Services staff member, who will provide you with information about what you should do next.
Be sure to update your contact information in TUportal to ensure we have your current phone number and address on file. You can do this by logging in to TUportal, clicking Manage My Account in the upper right corner, and selecting Manage Addresses and Phones.
Spring 2021 Return to Campus Protocols for Students
The nationwide circumstances call for students to remain vigilant in protecting themselves, their families and, by extension, the Temple community.
The four public health pillars—wearing a mask, frequent hand-washing, keeping six feet of physical distance and health monitoring—are the best ways to prevent students, their loved ones and others from contracting the virus. Adhering to these protocols is necessary now and for the foreseeable future.
The university continues to monitor guidance from the city and state. We are prepared to deviate from our plans in order to keep our community safe and healthy.
Students returning to campus for the spring semester are expected to follow the protocols below.
New Spring 2021 COVID-19 Testing Program for Students
While the virus continues to spread, evidence across institutions of higher education shows strong testing and sanitizing protocols and full community compliance with public health measures are fundamental to keeping campus case counts low.
To further ensure the safety of our community, Temple is instituting a more robust COVID-19 testing plan for the spring semester. Students will be assigned a COVID-19 testing group for the semester, which determines the number of times per week and location of their tests. The groups have been determined based on the amount of time students are expected to spend on or in proximity to campus.
As a general rule, if students have tested positive in the past 90 days, they should not be tested and are excluded from the mandatory requirements detailed below. Additionally, anyone in Groups One, Two, Three or Four who has received the COVID-19 vaccine should continue to be tested as a precaution.
More information about the testing plan are outlined below.
Student Testing and Exposure to COVID-19 FAQ
Temple University has developed guidelines for students who are experiencing symptoms, need to be tested for COVID-19 or need to report symptoms, and what to do if students think they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive. We also provide resources to help students monitor their health.
Answers to students’ frequently asked questions about testing and exposure to COVID-19 are provided below.
Return to Campus and Testing Protocols for Employees
Return to Campus Protocols for Employees
- If employees are traveling out of state, they must obtain a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours prior to their return to Pennsylvania.
- Employees must quarantine until they receive a negative test result.
- If employees are unable to get a test, the Pennsylvania Department of Health requires them to quarantine for 14 days when they return to the state and before coming to campus.
- Faculty working in clinical settings in our health science programs may be subject to additional requirements before returning.
Those commuting to work from neighboring states are exempt from the Pennsylvania requirements for travelers.
Employees who are planning to travel out of state in the near future should discuss their plans with their supervisor so they will be aware of what is required upon their return. If the need to quarantine due to out-of-state travel interferes with their ability to perform on-campus duties, employees may be required to cover absences with vacation or personal time.
Failure to follow these protocols will be considered a violation of university policy and subject to disciplinary action, revocation of building access or other sanctions.
Employee Testing and Exposure to COVID-19 FAQ
Temple University has developed guidelines for employees who are experiencing symptoms, need to be tested for COVID-19 or need to report symptoms, and what to do if employees think they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive.
Any faculty or staff member whose work includes routine in-person interaction with students is eligible to be tested twice per week. This work may include in-person instruction, providing direct student services or other duties that require in-person interaction for two days a week or more.
Any faculty and staff member whose work is on campus but does not include routine in-person interaction as defined above is eligible for testing once a week.
Students who work in campus facilities for two days or more per week will be required to obtain two tests a week. Student workers in roles that require work in campus facilities for only one day per week will be required to obtain a test once per week. These testing requirements are not in addition to testing arising from their activities as students; weekly testing required as a result of student and employee roles will not exceed twice a week for any individual. Learn more about student testing above, or read the full announcement.
Student workers who are required to be tested as a result of their employment status will be notified by Student Health Services through the same email system that provides testing information to the general student population.
Answers to frequently asked questions about testing and exposure to COVID-19, including information for faculty members if a student tests positive, are provided below.
If you still have questions after reviewing the material below, please contact the COVID-19 Liaison in your school, college or unit.
Contact tracing is the process of tracking and alerting individuals who have been exposed to the virus. When someone tests positive for or is likely to have COVID-19, contact tracing is how the people they have come into close contact with—and who might have been exposed to the virus—are identified, monitored and supported. The patient’s identity isn’t discussed with the contacts.
Temple’s Contact Tracing Unit, developed by Health Services and in partnership with the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, uses interviews and available data to find out where someone who tested positive has been and what areas are the highest risk spaces. Physical distancing and wearing masks helps lessen the risks for all university spaces.
As part of our containment strategy, we have been continually expanding the capacity of our Contact Tracing Unit. Once someone is identified as having tested positive for COVID-19, they will be required to isolate, and close contacts will be required to quarantine for 14 days. We have designated isolation and quarantine space on campus for those living in residence halls or in off-campus housing.
Learn more about contact tracing at Temple.
On Nov. 20, the university announced revised travel expectations for students, faculty and staff, in accordance with recent guidance from the CDC, as well as requirements for travelers issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health.
Travel to a “Hot State”
The Philadelphia Department of Public Health advises individuals returning to Pennsylvania following travel to a “hot state” to self-quarantine for 14 days.
To keep our campus community as safe as possible, the university is following this recommendation by prohibiting university-supported travel to these states and requiring students and staff to remain off campus for a 14-day period following return from any of the states indicated in the Philadelphia recommendation.