University of Houston Reopening Plan - University of Houston
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University of Houston Reopening Plan


The University of Houston Reopening Plan for fall 2020 charts our path for keeping our community safe while advancing toward our academic, research, personal and institutional goals. It is designed with the flexibility and compassion needed in this dynamic environment. While there is no way to eliminate all risk, we have strived to create a learning, working and living environment that is as safe as possible and a will allow us to minimize transmission of COVID-19 and, if necessary, quickly adapt our instruction should circumstances change during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reopening Timeline

Partial Closure for Remote Operations

On March 11, during spring break, UH announced remote operations of its campus in response to COVID-19. Students were encouraged to stay at home, but university housing remained open for students deciding to return. Faculty and staff could work from home to the extent that they were able to perform their functions remotely. Full-remote learning began on March 23 and continued for summer classes.

On May 6, UH began a four-phase reopening plan.


May 6, 2020

Voluntary return of research operations under strict protocols for social distancing, public safety, personal protection and mandatory training.


June 8, 2020

Opening of select facilities, phased-in return of Athletics and voluntary return of staff, including low-touch, low-risk administrative operations. Employee occupancy limited to 25%.


Aug. 10, 2020

No limit on how many or what percentage of staff should be on campus. Instead, people’s work decides their presence on campus. Staff who can work from home are encouraged to continue to do so. Staffing levels must be sufficient to provide the necessary support and services for their respective units. Student move-in began ug. 17.


Aug. 24, 2020

Classroom instruction resumes per the academic calendar. Provide all services to students in person and online. Instruction offered in various formats: Face-to-face, Hyflex, synchronous online and asynchronous online.

Should a COVID-19 resurgence occur, the University is ready to make rapid adjustments and return to full-time remote operations for the safety of our students and employees.


The fall 2020 semester began Aug. 24. In-person instruction will end before the Thanksgiving break. Students will attend classes remotely for the remainder of the semester.

Learn Safely

  • Course delivery options in the fall prioritize student choice, accommodate health and safety concerns. Course delivery options range from face-to-face in a socially distanced classroom to fully online and allow the University to make rapid adjustments should a COVID-19 resurgence require a return to full-remote operations.
  • Classroom capacity has been reduced to accommodate social distancing requirements, and classrooms have been outfitted with new equipment to accommodate online learning.
  • A daily health assessment, face coverings and social distancing is required for both faculty and students in face-to-face courses.

Academic Policies & Resources for Students >>     /     Academic Policies & Resources for Faculty >>

Campus Health and Wellness

Campus Requirements

  • A daily health assessment and face coverings are required for all individual on campus each day.
  • Maintain six feet of social distancing, practice good hand hygiene and cough etiquette.
  • COVID-19 training and certification is required by faculty, staff and students prior to a return to campus.
  • Employees, students, vendor and visitors are required to report a COVID-19 diagnosis or symptoms to UH and follow the established protocols, which include self-quarantine/isolation and written approval to return to campus.

COVID-19 Testing

The Student Health Center will provide COVID-19 testing for students, faculty and staff who become symptomatic or who, through contact tracing, have been identified as exposed to COVID-19 on the UH campus. The student, faculty and staff must also be participating in on-campus face-to-face courses, living or working on campus

Student Health Services

  • The Student Health Center returned to normal operations Aug. 24. All aspects of the clinic is open and available to our students, including Psychiatry, Women’s clinic, General Medicine, Lab and Pharmacy. Call us at 713-743-5151 to schedule your appointment.
  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) offers on-campus services by APPOINTMENT ONLY at the Health 2 Building for individuals in acute crisis and individuals without access to technology or privacy needed for teletherapy services. All other CAPS services will continue to operate via Teletherapy (phone and video) and can be reached at 713-743-5454, 24/7.

COVID-19 Prevention

Campus Cleaning and Safety Practices

University of Houston has implemented numerous, enhanced cleaning and safety practices to lower the risk of COVID-19 exposure and its spread. Everyone has a role to play in stopping the spead.

Shared Responsibility

We’re committed to preventing COVID-19, but we can’t do it alone. We each have a role to play to stop the spread.

Learn more about COVID-19 Prevention >>

COVID-19 Case Response

The University of Houston COVID Response plan uses public health guidance and best practices aimed at fostering a culture of care for our community while taking steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as the University of Houston gradually returns faculty, staff and students to the campus environment.


  • Employees, students, vendor and visitors are required to report a COVID-19 diagnosis or symptoms to UH and follow the established protocols, which include self-isolation and written approval to return to campus.
  • If the individual has been diagnosed tested positive for COVID-19, UH’s Contact Tracing team begins the case investigation to identify persons who may have been exposed. Members of the UH community identified as close contacts (those within six feet of the individual for longer than 15 minutes within the infectious period) who may have been exposed to the individual with COVID will be notified as rapidly and sensitively as possible.
  • UH Facilities works with the Office of Emergency Management and UH Contact Tracing team to identify all spaces that may have been impacted. The areas used by an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 will be secured as necessary, to prevent further use until these areas are cleaned and disinfected by crews specially trained on CDC protocols.

Learn more about Diagnosis/Symptoms protocols and the UH COVID Response Plan >>

COVID-19 Testing

The Student Health Center will provide COVID-19 testing for students, faculty and staff who become symptomatic or have been identified as exposed on the UH campus, and are participating in on-campus face-to-face courses, living or working on campus.

Learn more about COVID-19 Testing >>

University Positive Case Reporting

UH regularly updates positive cases of COVID-19 among members of our UH community by updating the data on the Positive Case Reporting page.

UH communicates positive cases to the UH community by following these protocols:


Contact Tracing Notification

  • “Reporting COVID-19 UH Diagnosis” form is received
  • Contact Tracing investigation begins if the case has been on campus during the infectious period. UH close contacts are identified and notified.

Cleaning & Facilities Notifications

  • Signage is posted, and in some cases, the building coordinator is notified if a space is undergoing disinfection cleaning.
  • Facilities Outage Notification is sent to building coordinators and occupants if building access is restricted or building operations disrupted.
  • UH Registrar will notify students and instructors if a classroom space is temporarily unavailable

Supervisor Notification to Office/Group

  • Supervisors may notify staff who have potentially been exposed

Website Dashboard Report

  • Positive Case Dashboard is updated daily Monday-Friday

The University will not disclose names of individuals who self-report a diagnosis or symptoms due to privacy law.

Learn more about COVID-19 Positive Cases >>

Teach Remotely

Deliver your classes online.
Learn About Teaching Online >>
Technology Guide for Faculty >>

Work Remotely

Make a flexible workplace arrangement.
COVID-19 Telecommuting Form >>
Technology Guide for Staff >>