Coronavirus Information for Residents

Last Updated: September 30, 2020

With the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic affecting nearly all nations across the world, we are more dedicated than ever to ensuring your safe arrival to campus and well-being during your overall residential experience. 

Following U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state of California and county guidelines, we are proceeding with caution with our return to campus for move-in. In keeping your health and safety as our top priority, we have implemented a set of practices designed to mitigate exposure to COVID-19. 

Information, policies and procedures contained on this page are subject to change pending new guidance and recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state of California, and county, and the evolving nature of the pandemic situation.


  • The Office of Housing Administration (OHA) provides an addendum to each resident outlining COVID-19 mitigation expectations, protocols and measures.
  • Detailed pre-arrival and move-in instructions are communicated to each resident and their family with practices to mitigate exposure to COVID-19 before and during housing move-in. 
  • Signage and digital displays are used throughout the residential communities to display information on physical distancing, handwashing, wearing facial coverings and other measures.
  • A Guide to Community Living handbook is provided to each resident at move-in, outlining the policies and procedures residents are expected to follow to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. 
  • The Housing and Residential Education team communicates COVID-19 related information and updates to each resident.
  • SDSU maintains a public-facing COVID-19 site with information, updates, health-related guidance and FAQs.  

Mandated COVID-19 Testing

Working in consultation with the California State University system, our university is now able to require testing of undergraduate and graduate students taking in-person courses. This means that all students living on campus and, now, all students taking an in-person course will be tested at least every 14 days.

This is a required program. This means that after every 14-day period, based on the individual testing schedule provided to each student, we must have a new confirmed negative COVID-19 test on file for every student living on campus and every student taking an in-person course. Additional information will be shared with these students via their @sdsu email accounts.

Students may be tested at Student Health services or at a provider of the student’s choice, so long as the student submits their results via HealtheConnect, a secure documentation portal. If students find that their test result information is not appearing correctly in WebPortal, contact [email protected].

For additional information regarding testing, visit the public-facing COVID-19 site.

Building Modifications, Cleaning and Service

OHA completed significant modifications to the residential communities and services including, but not limited to:

    • Installation of protective screens at front desks. 
    • Signage throughout the residential communities to encourage and ensure physical distancing. 
    • Closure and occupancy limits in common areas. 
    • Hand sanitation dispensers in building entrances and exits. 
    • Sanitizing and disinfecting stations in communal areas. 
    • Rigorous cleaning of communal areas occurring multiple times each day. 
    • Updated the Health & Safety Inspection and Service Request protocol to ensure physical distancing and proper sanitation. 
    • Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) strategies based on each building’s design and equipment, such as dilution and extraction ventilation, pressurization, airflow distribution and optimization, mechanical filtration, and humidity control. These strategies are effective for reducing the risk of dissemination of infectious aerosols in building environments and align with professional guidance and standards. 

How We Clean

    • Housing Facilities Services (HFS) clean the residential communities each day using EPA-registered disinfectants. 
    • High touch areas such as doors, furniture, and handrails are cleaned twice daily. 
    • Residents are responsible for cleaning their own suite or apartment. However, if current CDC and county guidelines allow, HFS will offer courtesy cleaning inside in-unit bathrooms and kitchens in freshman communities two (2) times per semester. Residents may opt out of this service if requested. 
    • While residents are encouraged to bring their own cleaning supplies, additional supplies are available at each community front desk. 
    • Appropriate cleaning protocols are in place to respond to a positive COVID-19 case.

Health & Safety Inspections

    • Residents are responsible for cleaning their own suite or apartment. Health & Safety Inspections will be conducted inside suites and apartments in sophomore and upper-division communities two (2) times per semester.


All SDSU Dining locations operate in accordance with San Diego County COVID-19 guidelines. Each restaurant and dining operation has specific protocols to address unique physical distancing and cleaning/sanitation within the operation. View dining locations and hours

Physical Distancing Protocols

  • Floor markings are present to encourage physical distancing of at least six (6) feet. All locations have directional signage displayed for traffic flow.
  • Customers are required to wear face coverings while inside all dining areas.
  • Customers are encouraged to dine in small groups and only congregate with roommate(s) or immediate family members. 
  • Common appliances for customer use, such as microwaves, will not be available.

Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols

  • High traffic areas and commonly used surfaces are sanitized every thirty (30) minutes.
  • Hands-free hand sanitation stations are located at the entrance of all dining areas as well as other locations throughout the facility.
  • After each dining location closes, the contracted professional janitorial company thoroughly cleans all areas of the entire facility.

Housing and Residential Education


  • Residential programs and services have been revised to support no-contact delivery or appropriate physical distancing guidelines. 
  • Group gatherings, events, and programs are limited per current SDSU and state restrictions.
  • Virtual programs are held regularly for community building.


As a reminder to anyone who will be on a SDSU campus or property this fall, the university has implemented a facial covering policy. Facial coverings are required by SDSU and also the county for everyone on campus — indoors and outdoors. Only the following limited exceptions are offered:

  • If you are alone in a private office.
  • If you are eating inside or outside while physically distanced (at six feet or more).
  • If the individual is a child under the age of 2, or anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the facial covering without assistance.
  • When students are in their assigned residence hall room, suite, or apartment.
  • When engaging in physically distanced (at six feet or more), individual strenuous exercise outdoors.
  • When required as part of an instructional music education course while physically distanced (at six feet or more), as directed by the instructor.

During the times when an individual is not wearing a facial covering pursuant to the limited exceptions, the individual is advised to have a facial covering available to wear as physical distancing could be compromised by another person.

More information is available on the university’s General Prevention site.


    • Guest policies are subject to change at any time to conform to public health and university guidelines. At this time, residents may not have guests or visitors in their residential spaces (including personal space and community spaces such as lounges, study rooms, and outdoor recreation areas), with the exception of assistance provided to the resident to move the resident into and out of the residential space.


    • We continue to enhance our student support services, facilities and program offerings. Our primary responsibility is to provide a safe and welcoming environment to all student residents. Students living on campus have access to inclusive living communities and the kinds of learning opportunities that will support their holistic growth. The Residential Education team, including Residence Halls Coordinators, RAs/CAs, and Front Desk Assistants are available in the on-campus communities to support student success as well as safety. 

Aztec Recreation Center

    • Aztec Recreation Center: 
      The Aztec Recreation Center (ARC) has initiated a comprehensive reopening plan which includes physical distancing, temperature checks, facial coverings and strict sanitation protocols.  ARC OUTDOORS has launched and offers four on-campus outdoor activity destinations. Programs and services such as weight and cardio equipment, group fitness classes, tennis and lap swim at the Aquaplex are available. At this time, activities such as intramural sports and club sports are delayed until guidance allows a safe return to play. This semester, the ARC will also offer a host of virtual opportunities such as virtual fitness classes, sports skills challenges, e-sports leagues and special events. Visit Aztec Recreation Center for the latest updates.
    • Swimming Pools: Residential Swimming pools are closed and may reopen if guidance allows.


    • Following physical distancing guidelines set by county, state and federal authorities, SDSU has suspended the live-on requirement for first and second-year students for the 2020-21 academic year. 
    • We have also reduced the density of our residential population and potential exposure to others by not utilizing the six (6) traditional residence halls with common/shared restrooms. Instead, we will only offer apartment and suite-style living communities. With the reduction in density, we are able to accommodate up to 3,500 residents for fall 2020 out of our 7,000 total bed spaces. 
    • In an apartment-style community, residents have a kitchen, living area, and bathroom(s) in their unit. In suite-style communities, residents have a private bathroom(s) in their suite, and certain buildings also include a kitchenette and living area. In all cases, there will be no more than four (4) students to a restroom.

Isolation and Quarantine


  • When the University becomes aware of a student with COVID-like symptoms or a positive COVID-19 case, an assessment and response team is activated to ensure the sick student is isolated and, as appropriate, close contacts are quarantined.  
  • Several campus apartment buildings have been designated as isolation spaces for confirmed cases, in a single room configuration.
  • SDSU Dining has a food-delivery program in place for isolated students.
  • Isolation kits are available for sick residents containing bathroom tissue, paper towels, disinfectant/cleaning spray bottle, liquid hand soap, hand sanitizer, and more. 
  • International students and students arriving from abroad are required to quarantine for 14 days prior to move-in and are provided detailed quarantine instructions. 
  • All members of the community will be asked to follow isolation and quarantine guidelines defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  

For information about what happens when a student is placed in isolation or quarantine, visit Isolation & Quarantine Process for Residents.


  • With the transition to virtual courses only, will university housing close? 

    No, on-campus housing is not impacted by this decision and will remain open as planned.

  • May I cancel my housing license agreement?

    Students who would like to cancel their housing contract and leave the on-campus housing are able to do so. To be clear, the university is not closing housing, but clarifying that students do have a choice to leave without financial penalty.  

    The housing cancellation fee will be waived for all students who moved into their fall assignment and choose to cancel their license agreement. This fee will be refunded for students who moved into their fall assignments, have already moved out, and were charged the normal cancellation fee. Students will only pay the room and board fees for the days they are on campus.

    If you would like to proceed with cancellation, please complete the Contract Release Request Form on the Cancellations page

  • If I cancel housing, can I also cancel our meal plan?

    Yes, if a student cancels their housing license agreement they can also be released from the meal plan. 

  • Is COVID-19 testing available on campus? 

    Enrolled students can access COVID-19 testing at Student Health Services at the Calpulli Center Information Booth. Visit COVID-19 testing for additional information. 

  • What are SDSU's plans in regards to a student contracting COVID-19? Will the student and/or students need to self-quarantine?

    Consistent with requirements from the San Diego County Health & Human Services Agency, students who are diagnosed with COVID-19 will be required to isolate. Close contacts will also need to quarantine.  The university has developed plans to respond to any cases of COVID-19 in our campus community, including isolation and quarantine protocols. This includes spaces that are set aside to support this function and close partnership with our local health agency. Visit quarantine and isolation for additional information.

  • If a student is placed in isolation, when will they be released? If they want to go home are they allowed to?
    The student will be released from isolation based on guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding the length of the isolation period and directives from San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency.  

    If a student is isolated and wants to go home, the guidance would depend on the location of the student’s permanent address. The CDC requires self-isolation, therefore travel is not advised. However, if you live within driving distance and would be able to pick up your student, this would be acceptable as exposure would be limited. If a student has COVID-19 and is moved into the family home, the student would be required to isolate there and all household contacts would be required to quarantine.
  • What dining options are open?
    Visit dining locations and hours for restaurant information. Please note that locations and hours are subject to change. 
  • Can I opt out of my meal plan?
    Freshmen living on campus are required to select a meal plan as part of their license agreement whether living in a suite, or apartment. Meal plans are optional for sophomore and upper-division students. Having a meal plan allows the student to focus on all the intricacies of campus life without the burden of having to plan, shop, prepare and clean up after meals. SDSU Dining offers over 40 locations on campus, all providing ultimate variety and care within San Diego County Health guidelines for safe operations.
  • Will on-campus housing be available for spring 2021 only?
    We expect that housing will be available for spring 2021. More information will be available in October. 
  • What is the number of positive cases that would determine the school closing?
    There are many essential services of the university, including residential, research and service activities, which cannot be suspended nor can be done remotely, and the University would not close. Further, SDSU Flex allows for instruction to vary across in-person, hybrid, and virtual delivery, such that the institution can be responsive to any increase in cases in San Diego County or within our campus community. SDSU is not planning to close based on a predetermined number of positive cases. Instead, services and courses that are in person may be moved to virtual learning depending upon guidance from CDC as well the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency.