What to Expect – Students and Parents


A Safe Return to Campus

The safety and well-being of our students remains a top priority. UC Riverside has returned to mostly in-person instruction.

UCR is committed to delivering in-person instruction, research opportunities, and student support services wherever possible. As a nationally-ranked residential public research university, an on-campus presence is essential to successfully advance our mission of instruction, research, and public service. 

 Campus gathering and student support venues, including libraries, Student Recreation Center, Highlander Union Building, bookstore, dining spaces, and residence halls,are open.

All members of the campus community – including students, staff, and faculty – must adhere to public health and safety guidelines upon their return to the UCR campus.

Guidelines include but are not limited to mandatory vaccinations and completing the COVID Screening Check when symptomatic, positive, or exposed.

The circumstances around COVID-19 are rapidly changing, and campus guidelines will continue to evolve as guidance from local, state, and national health authorities are updated. Please continue to visit the COVID-19 site for updated information with specifics about operations on campus.


Do I need to get a COVID test before returning to Riverside? 
Students living in campus housing should get a COVID-19 test before returning to Riverside. 

Where can I get tested after returning to campus? 
The UCR testing sites are in the Pentland Hills Bear Cave Meeting Room and outside the Student Success Center. 

Can over-the-counter rapid antigen tests be used to meet the pre-return to campus testing requirement for students in housing?   
Yes rapid, at-home antigen tests do satisfy the testing requirement. 

Am I required to get the COVID-19 booster?
Yes, UC’s vaccination policy requires all faculty, academic personnel, staff, trainees, students, and others accessing university facilities and programs to receive a full vaccine series, including boosters. Everyone who is eligible for a COVID-19 booster should get one immediately. Others should get a booster as soon as they are eligible. 

What if I or one of my roommates test positive after returning to Riverside? 
Students who test positive must report their results using the COVID Screening Check. Students will be asked to isolate or be moved to isolation housing. Regardless of vaccination status, students who are exposed do not need to quarantine, but must test within 3-5 days after last exposure, and continue to follow any additional campus testing protocols. These students must monitor for symptoms and strictly adhere to COVID-19 precautions for 10 days from their last exposure.

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  • Strict adherence to health and safety standards. Personal and institutional health and safety standards for all on-campus activities will be in place, consistent with applicable public health guidelines. This will include correct use of face coverings, use of the COVID Screening Check, adherence to testing protocols, and mandatory vaccinations. All on-campus activities, and anyone participating in these activities, will be required to strictly adhere to these standards. 
  • Planning to offer most courses in-person
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  • The University of California finalized a policy to require vaccinations of all students and employees accessing campus facilities at all UC locations, including UC Riverside. More information about the vaccine policy, where to get vaccinated, and how to provide proof of vaccination can be found here.
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  • UC Riverside will require routine COVID-19 testing for select groups of students on campus – including everyone who is unvaccinated (with approved exemptions), symptomatic, or with a confirmed exposure to someone with COVID-19. Optional testing will also be available. Testing requirements and locations can be found here
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Campus Housing
  • All campus housing communities and services are open as scheduled. Students returning to housing should test before their arrival on campus. 
  • Please contact housing as soon as possible to confirm your housing arrival plans and if you have questions about COVID move-in requirements. If you have reserved on-campus housing and have further questions, please contact UCR Housing Services at housinginfo@ucr.edu or 951-827-6350 for assistance.
  • Enhanced health and safety precautions will be in place, along with increased cleaning of facilities.
  • On-campus indoor and outdoor dining venues are open. Hours of operation can be found on the dining website.
  • Contactless cashier and other enhanced health and safety measures will be in place.
Student Services
  • All major student resources and services – including Ethnic and Gender Centers, Student Life, Dean of Students, Associated Students, Graduate Students Association, Student Health Services, Student Disability Resource Center, and more – are currently available virtually and will be available in-person. 
  • Student Recreation Center is currently open.
  • Basic needs assistance, including grocery support, economic crisis response, and housing insecurity assistance, is available through the Basic Needs Department.
  • Undergraduate Education providing academic support, experiential learning, tutoring, and more.
  • Library curbside delivery and “ask a librarian/ask a student” is now available, and on-campus libraries are open.
  • Laptops and mobile hotspots available through the Loan2Learn program.
  • Free software and virtual computer labs available to students.
  • Assistance with remote learning and online assignments and exams provided by Undergraduate Education.
  • Labs and research facilities are allowed to function at 100% capacity, with health and safety precautions in place. Undergraduate and graduate students, with approval, may conduct research on campus. 
  • Updated parking permit options are available. Details available here