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Questions & Answers About the Program

Thank you to the students, parents and families, faculty, staff and community members who have submitted questions about the Return to Learn program via town hall events, our website contact form, surveys and more. We have compiled answers to many of your questions below. 

If you have a question about the program, please take a moment to browse the questions and answers below. If you cannot find the answer, please use our contact form that is linked below the list of questions.

For other questions not related to the Return to Learn program, but relevant to the return to campus, contact Housing Dining Hospitality, Admissions, Student Affairs, Research Affairs or Academic Affairs. Undergraduate students should contact their College Administrators for questions regarding advising-related questions.

COVID-19 Symptoms

What is the difference between SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19?

SARS-CoV-2 is the virus which causes the disease COVID-19.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19 that warrant testing?

Any of the following that are unrelated to a chronic condition: Cough, shortness of breath, fever, fatigue or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea.

Who needs to conduct the daily symptom screening?

All UC San Diego staff, faculty and student employees who are reporting to campus or any other physical UC San Diego location for work must conduct a daily symptom and exposure screening for COVID-19 and report any symptoms. The symptom and exposure screening tool can be accessed from a computer or mobile device. If you are unable to access the internet, you should call your supervisor/work lead/check-in person in advance of going to work on-site. Your supervisor will be notified daily of your work status. If you have severe symptoms, you should call 911.

Employees who are working remotely in the San Diego region, are also strongly encouraged to conduct the daily self-screening for COVID-19 symptoms and report any symptoms.

All students who are currently on campus or plan to physically come to campus are expected to complete the screening daily. The rest of the student population is highly encouraged to fill out the screening daily in order to carefully self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.

Learn more on the Testing and Screening page.

I have symptoms of COVID-19. What should I do?

Students in the SD region: Call Student Health Services at 858-534-3300 for consultation. Stay at home until you have received guidance, which may include testing for COVID-19. Tests can be completed at no cost to students at Student Health Services or UC San Diego Health locations, regardless of healthcare provider.

Students outside of the SD region: Call your healthcare provider. Stay at home until you have received guidance, which may include testing for COVID-19.

Remote employees: If you have symptoms of COVID-19 and you report them in the daily symptom and exposure screening tool, you will be contacted by the dedicated COVID Nurses line. You may also contact them directly at 619-543-8260. A healthcare professional will assist you with determining if you should be tested. Tests can be completed at no cost to employees at UC San Diego Health locations. You may also choose to visit your own healthcare provider for testing.

On-site employees: If you have symptoms of COVID-19, do not report to your worksite. You will be contacted by the dedicated COVID Nurses line. You may contact them directly at 619-543-8260. A healthcare professional will assist you with determining if you should be tested. Tests can be completed at no cost to employees at UC San Diego Health locations. You may also choose to visit your own healthcare provider for testing.

If you are at a UC San Diego worksite and you develop symptoms, you should retake the symptom screening immediately and call the dedicated COVID Nurses line at 619-543-8260 to speak with a healthcare professional who will assist you with determining if you should be tested. You will be sent home by your supervisor. Tests can be completed at no cost to employees at UC San Diego Health locations. You may also choose to visit your own healthcare provider for testing.

Learn more on the Testing and Screening page.

Is the online health screening survey going to become an app that can be downloaded and used daily?

The current plan is for the online health screening survey to remain a web app. However, the web app (website) is mobile friendly so staff can just favorite the website or add the website on their phone home screen.

COVID-19 Testing

Can you share the details of the new Pilot COVID-19 Exposure Notification Technology App?

CA COVID Notify, published by the State of California, uses the Exposure Notifications System from Google and Apple to alert you when you’ve been exposed to COVID-19. It will quickly notify you if you’ve likely been exposed, allowing you to seek medical attention and reduce risk for your loved ones. Additional information about the program and instructions on how to download the app can be found here.

What type of testing is planned for the fall?

We want to make it easy for students, faculty and staff to get tested periodically. For asymptomatic testing, we envision placing testing boxes around campus. Starting in the fall, our plan is for asymptomatic individuals to be able to test themselves periodically without having to come to student health services, a physician’s office or the hospital. Each will receive a collection sample bag and will either swab their own nose or mouth, then return the sample to a collection container. We know people prefer to have saliva testing, and we are working on getting this option validated so that we can offer it in the fall. Test results will be delivered directly to the individual’s mobile phone through the MyChart app. Under most circumstances the results will be available within 24 hours.

Asymptomatic testing is just one part of a broader framework that we are implementing. These tests are happening in coordination with daily symptom and exposure screenings for employees and students; environmental monitoring such as wastewater and surface testing; interventions like wearing a face covering and lowering the campus density within housing and classrooms; and case isolation and contact tracing. Together, these strategies help us identify viral activity on campus and reduce the risk of widespread transmission.

When will asymptomatic testing begin?

We have started our ongoing testing program for all on-campus community members. On-campus community members are encouraged to take part in periodic asymptomatic testing as a collective public health program that will help us resume on-campus activities as safely as possible.

We acknowledge that UC San Diego is not an island. We want everyone who is coming to campus to be tested. There are some populations for which we may recommend increased testing, for instance those who cannot physically distance or appropriately use face coverings. Our approach is adaptive; we will adjust our strategy on who we test and how frequently we test based on the viral activity we find during our ongoing monitoring.

Will testing be mandatory?

Testing is required for students who plan to come to campus and is strongly encouraged for faculty and staff. If an employee chooses to not test but exhibits symptoms of COVID-19, they will have to follow isolation guidelines.

Why is testing mandatory for students and only strongly encouraged for faculty and staff?

The majority of our students are in the 18-29 year old age group. This age group is known to have a high rate of SARS-CoV-2 infection without symptoms (asymptomatic), despite not having symptoms they are shedding virus and infectious to others. Additionally, this age group has had higher positivity rates compared to other age groups. For these reasons, University leadership made the decision to require testing for all of our students planning to be on campus.

How do I know when to schedule my next asymptomatic test?

Students will receive an email reminder after 10 days have passed since their last test date. This reminder should prompt you to self-schedule your next test.

Faculty and staff can self-schedule their test when needed, ideally every 12-16 days.

What if I am a student and a campus employee? Are graduate student researchers considered students or employees in terms of testing and all health services?

The daily symptom screening and the daily symptom screener identifies you as both an employee and a student. If you need testing for symptoms based on the daily screening results, or you are offered asymptomatic testing, you may go either to a Student Health site or one of the various UC San Diego Health locations. Your results will be visible in your medical record using MyStudentChart. Student Health Services will provide clinical support should you test positive for COVID-19, and is always available for guidance, regardless of insurance. Read more about Student Health Services hours and location.

I have dependents on my SHIP insurance plan. Are they eligible for testing?

In most cases, the Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) covers students and dependents if they meet the medical criteria for COVID-19 testing. To learn more about your individual situation or for more information on SHIP, please contact Student Health Services at 858-534-3300.

What methods of testing will be used, how frequently, and how does the program address privacy?

Information has been published on the first Return to Learn testing cohort. There are two testing cohorts occurring over the summer that should help inform testing for the fall. The latest information on testing will be posted here and on the UC San Diego Health website. Learn more about COVID-19 Symptom Screening Program Privacy Practices.

How have you used modeling data to shape the UC San Diego fall plan?

The goal of the Return to Learn asymptomatic testing program is to enable us to detect outbreaks at their earliest stage so that we can intervene and prevent them from growing. Our simulation models have helped us understand that we have a high likelihood of detecting an outbreak before there are 10 detectable infections if we test at least 75% of the population on campus every month. 

The program is designed to be adaptive, based on data as it emerges. For example, it may be more effective to test some populations more or less frequently based on their particular likelihood of infection and their potential impact on the campus based on the number and variety of people they come into contact with. 

We've also done other kinds of simulation models tailored to understanding certain campus operations, such as the impact of housing density as well as classroom sizes. For example, our modeling indicated that we would see a very strong reduction in transmission if we put a maximum cap of classroom size at 50 and shifted many of our courses online. This will substantially help to reduce the risk of transmission if an infection occurs on campus.

How is UC San Diego working with and being guided by county and state recommendations?

We're working closely with the county and state to ensure that all of our activities are in alignment with their recommendations, their orders, and their policies. This is occurring on a number of levels, including the testing that we provide and the symptom screening, as well as the sanitation and other activities on campus to reduce the transmission risk. We're really working hand in hand to ensure that we are following guidelines but also enhancing them with our own understanding of how we can better target and reduce risk on campus and identify outbreaks early.

What happens if I indicate I have symptoms of COVID-19 in the daily symptom and exposure screening?

Do not come to work on-site. Your supervisor will be notified that you received a red thumb for the day. Work with your supervisor to determine next steps. If you are scheduled to work remotely and if you feel well enough to work, you can still engage in work. UC San Diego Health’s Testing Support Line will contact you to determine if a COVID-19 test needs to be scheduled at no cost to you. You may also choose to contact your healthcare provider to schedule a test. For additional information, please go to: https://blink.ucsd.edu/HR/services/covid-19/symptom-screening/

I am an on-site employee who received a positive test result, what happens next?

Campus on-site employees who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by UC San Diego Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine (COEM) as quickly as possible, usually within 24 hours. If you are a campus on-site employee who tests positive at a non-UC San Diego Health location, you must report your results to COEM at COEMexposure@health.ucsd.edu to support contact tracing efforts.

Student employees who test positive will be communicated with and coordinated through UC San Diego Student Health Services (SHS). Student employees who test positive with an outside healthcare provider, must report their results to SHS by calling 858-534-3300.

COEM, in conjunction with the UC San Diego Public Health’s Contact Tracing team, will contact the positive person and conduct case investigation and contact tracing. This process involves reviewing their health, identifying close contacts and where they have been on campus, reviewing campus release from work and return to work requirements, and notifying San Diego County Public Health to ensure proper reporting. Communication with close contacts will be coordinated between San Diego County Public Health and UC San Diego Public Health’s Contact Tracing team. The contact tracing team will only contact UC San Diego community members, such as staff, faculty, students, and vendors. San Diego County Public Health will contact all other close contacts located in San Diego.

COEM will notify the UC San Diego Emergency Operations Center (EOC) of the date, time and location(s) that the positive employee was on-site. The EOC will contact the supervisor by phone or email to collect additional information on the work area to make disinfection, sanitation and deep cleaning determinations and operational pause notifications. To comply with privacy policies and laws and maintain patient confidentiality, the positive employee’s name and any information about the person’s identity should remain confidential and should not be shared over email.

Who should be notified if someone working on campus tests positive for COVID-19?

If an employee working on campus tests positive for COVID-19, a notification to COEM at COEMexposure@health.ucsd.edu and to EOC at eoc@ucsd.edu must be made to support contact tracing and disinfection efforts.

If a student working on campus tests positive for COVID-19, a notification to SHS must be made.

What type of communication should I expect if I test positive?

Employees will receive a phone call from UC San Diego’s Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine (COEM) if you were tested at a UC San Diego Health location to notify you of your test results and to conduct a case investigation. Students will receive a call from Student Health Services.

If you reported your positive test results to COEM’s email address, they will call you to follow up after they receive your notification to begin case investigation, typically within 24 hours. You will also receive a call from the contact tracing team to determine all close contacts. All COVID-19 positive cases are reported to San Diego County Public Health Services, who may attempt to call you as well. Please do not be alarmed by the multiple follow-up calls; it is for the health and safety of our county and campus communities. Communication will be done on campus phones so please answer calls from campus phone numbers and/or return calls promptly.

Are the data on campus COVID-19 cases and testing publicly available?

The Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) Testing Dashboard provides information about COVID-19 testing and prevalence in the UC San Diego community based on tests conducted by UC San Diego Health and UC San Diego Student Health Services. It is updated weekly.

 

Contact Tracing

What is contact tracing and why is it important?

Contact tracing is an activity that is commonly done to interrupt transmission of communicable diseases or diseases that are passed from one person to another. It is critically important in interrupting transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.

Contact tracing involves interviewing individuals who are infected and their close contacts. Close contacts of an infected person are individuals who have been within six feet of the person who has the infection for more than 15 minutes or anyone who has come in contact with an infected person’s bodily fluids.

How does contact tracing happen at UC San Diego?

UC San Diego has safety requirements for everyone who is on campus, including physical distancing, wearing face coverings, and proper hand hygiene and sanitation. Individuals are unlikely to become a close contact of a newly infected person on campus as long as there is widespread adherence to campus safety requirements.

Whether you are in a classroom, a residential hall, or an office on the campus, the key is to stay physically distant, wear a face covering, and to do so for all of the time you are together. Otherwise if an infection appears in the area you're working in, you run the risk of becoming a close contact. If you are identified as a close contact, you will be notified within 24 hours of the infected person receiving their test result.

How do you communicate with contacts?

Close contacts are reached by phone. If someone would like to follow up with our staff by text message, that will also be available. At this time, mobile applications are not being used.

What information is shared with contacts and how do you maintain patient confidentiality?

When a person becomes infected, their name and contact information is documented by their healthcare provider using standard privacy and health protections. They are also interviewed about their close contacts and advised on health and prevention measures. Close contacts receive a phone call to inform them that they have been exposed to someone diagnosed with COVID-19. Confidentiality of the infected person is maintained.

Someone I know and interacted with was tested for COVID-19 but their results are not yet known. What should I do?

It will depend on the nature of your interaction and whether the individual you know tests positive for COVID-19. You are considered to be a "close contact" by San Diego County Public Health if you were less than 6 feet away for 15 minutes or more from, or had direct physical contact (such as hugging/kissing) with an individual who is confirmed as COVID-19 positive. If you meet the criteria for being a “close contact,” to be safe it is best that you stay at home and avoid contact with vulnerable individuals (those over 65 years of age, with chronic medical conditions or immunocompromised) until the individual’s COVID-19 test is back. If you need to leave your home, make sure you wear a face covering and maintain physical distancing. If their test result is positive or if you have questions about what to do, contact Student Health Services for additional guidance including testing and recommendations about restricting activity, including a period of quarantine. Staff and faculty can contact the COVID Nurse’s line to get advice through the Symptom Screening Tool.

Someone I know and interacted with was diagnosed with COVID-19. What should I do?

If you meet the criteria for being a "close contact" (you were less than 6 feet away for 15 minutes or more or had direct physical contact with the person with COVID-19) you will need to quarantine for 14 days from the date of exposure under the County Health Order on Quarantine for Persons Exposed to COVID-19. You should seek testing through Student Health Services at 858-534-3300, especially if you develop symptoms. If you begin to exhibit symptoms, remain at home and contact Student Health Services for additional guidance including testing and recommendations about restricting activity. Staff and faculty can contact the COVID Nurse’s line to get advice through the Symptom Screening Tool.

I have been told by a health professional that I meet the criteria for exposure to COVID-19 and that I should quarantine and have a COVID-19 test. Why should I have a test for COVID-19?

A test will help determine if you will require isolation housing and additional clinical guidance and support. If your test is positive, you can help others by determining if any other individuals were exposed to the virus. These individuals will need to be contacted and provided with clinical guidance through a process called contact tracing. The University offers contact tracing services in order to reduce the spread of the virus without revealing your identity and to maintain your confidentiality. If your test is negative, you will still need a 14-day quarantine period after exposure because you may still be contagious or develop symptoms after your initial test. If you develop symptoms after your initial test, you may need to be re-tested. Please seek the guidance of your health provider to determine if you will need to be re-tested.

What is the difference between contact tracing and exposure notification?

These two terms are commonly confused. Contact tracing is a very specific method for public health intervention that requires in-depth investigation of potential exposure, risk for severe disease, and risk for transmission of the virus to others. It begins with a phone call with a person who is infected, then a conversation with their close contacts, and two weeks of follow-up with the close contacts.

Alternatively, exposure notification is usually conducted completely digitally on an opt-in basis. This process involves the use of smartphones to create a log of potential close contacts. The individual would enable this feature—via Bluetooth technology—and would only connect to other smartphones that have also enabled the same system. If one person becomes infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, a message would be sent to those enabled smartphones that they might have been exposed to someone with the virus in the last two weeks.

Housing and Quarantine

Is on-campus housing open for Fall 2020?

Yes. On-campus housing communities and dining facilities will remain open with enhanced precautionary measures. More information on housing and the latest updates can be found here.

What is the protocol if a student living in on-campus housing tests positive for COVID-19?

If a student living in on-campus housing tests positive for COVID-19, they will be moved to isolation housing at any time during the academic year. Basic needs will be met and hot meals delivered to the unit three times a day. They will also receive care from Student Health Services. Additional details are available on the HDH: COVID-19 Updates page.

What does it mean to quarantine and is it different from isolation?

Yes, quarantine and isolation are different. According to San Diego County Health orders, isolation is for individuals with a known diagnosis of COVID-19 or who are likely to have COVID-19. Quarantine is for those who are "close contacts" of an individual with a known diagnosis of COVID-19. Please see the County's guide on the differences between quarantine and isolation.

I have been outside in a large group of people not physically distant. What should I do?

You should self-monitor for symptoms and avoid contact with vulnerable individuals (over 65, chronically ill or immunocompromised) for a period of 14 days. If you were within six feet for more than 15 minutes of someone diagnosed with COVID-19, or if you had direct physical contact with a person with COVID-19, you must quarantine yourself under County Health orders.

I just traveled back to San Diego. Do I need to self-quarantine before returning to campus?

As of July 15, 2020, the San Diego County of Public Health order states that all persons arriving in the county from international locations identified on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Warning Level 2 or 3 Travel Advisory shall be subject to 14-day home or other suitable location quarantine and self-monitoring. If you are not an international traveler, you should self-monitor for symptoms and seek advice from Student Health Services if you begin to develop symptoms of COVID-19. Staff and faculty can contact the COVID Nurse’s line to get advice through the Symptom Screening Tool.

Campus Safety Protocols

How will UC San Diego prevent students from gathering or attending large parties and what will be the consequences for those who do?

The campus is deploying several student engagement and support strategies to encourage good decisions and compliance with our Student Code of Conduct which has been revised to reflect the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Examples include:

  • Triton Health Ambassadors: embedded and off-campus to advance social norming and compliance campaigns.
  • Student-led marketing and communications, including student “pledge” and community-focused efforts.
  • Social media content, including Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter and student-created TikTok videos.
  • Town halls.
  • Landlord communication: outreach to share campus processes and protocols.
  • COVID-19 training for employee and student safety awareness.
  • Clear expectations via direct communication to parents and students.
  • Supporting student success with accessible testing
  • COVID-19 residential roommate agreements.
Non-compliance is subject to progressive engagement and discipline, in accordance with appropriate policies and processes for students.

What steps are being taken to ensure classroom safety?

New protocols are designed to maintain appropriate distancing between students and instructors in the classroom, including systems for entering and exiting spaces while social distancing. Building ventilation systems and water quality have also been upgraded and cleaning protocols have been enhanced, including a dedicated sanitation team with increased daily cleaning services and a rapid response COVID-19 Cleaning Team.

Be sure to review the Return to Learn Campus Safety for details about safety requirements and protocols, including information about facilities management. Visit Return to Learn Academics or read the recent Q&A with Vice Chancellor Gary Matthews on campus safety for additional information specific to classroom logistics.

What is the rule for wearing face coverings when I am on campus?

You must wear a face covering when you are in any building at UC San Diego. In exterior spaces, we ask that individuals wear a face covering at all times except when engaging in strenuous activity as well as maintain a distance of at least six feet from others. Please see UC San Diego policy 516-30.

If you reside on campus, you must wear a face covering whenever you leave your apartment or suite. Only remove your face covering if you are eating or drinking and immediately replace your face covering afterward. Learn more about campus safety requirements here

Can you describe the safety measures being taken in regard to cleaning protocols, PPE and general campus operations?

Throughout the pandemic, Resource Management and Planning (RMP) has continued to safely deliver essential services to the campus. Full information about campus safety operations can be found here.

What is the cleaning process if someone working on campus tests positive for COVID-19?

UC San Diego Environment, Health and Safety (EH&S) will coordinate with the supervisor and Facilities Management for cleaning and disinfection of workspaces, equipment, and common surface areas such as elevator buttons, doors, and high contact areas. Work areas where the positive individual spent significant time will be closed or have restricted access until the facility is cleaned/disinfected. This is evaluated on a case-by-case basis according to the information provided by the individual who tested positive and the supervisor. Occupants in the affected area will be notified to vacate by department officials until cleaning and disinfection has been completed and is safe to return. Disinfection typically takes less than 24 hours during the work week but could take up to 48 hours.

The workspace cleaning and disinfection protocols follow the CDC guidance framework that includes an operational assessment and scope of cleaning assessment. The cleaning/disinfection process is based on the timeline of occupancy in the space, type of space, utilization of space, symptoms, and mask usage. Responsiveness to Emergency Operations Center communication is the best step to initiate the process to assess the situation and develop the appropriate plan and procedures for cleaning and disinfection.

Will outdoor meetings be allowed on campus this Fall?

The answer is unfortunately, no. Per the County health orders, gatherings are simply not allowed, whether indoor or outdoor. There is a specific exemption for holding scheduled classes, under strict distance and sanitation protocols.

What protocol should an instructor follow if a student is not wearing a mask in the classroom?

Please refer to the Face Mask Intervention Support Poster for steps you can take if a student in your class is not wearing a mask. The first step is to simply remind the student of the requirement to wear a face-covering and the last would be to contact Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) to send a representative to speak with the student.

Here are a few suggestions for what instructors might do while waiting for an EH&S representative to reach the classroom:

  • Ask the student to step outside the classroom or away from the area and wait for the EH&S representative to arrive.
  • Dismiss the in-person session for the day, thereby putting social pressure on the student who has inconvenienced their classmates.
  • Have the class take a brief break while waiting for the EH&S representative with the student.
If the student leaves before EH&S arrives, please give the student’s name to EH&S for reporting to student conduct. UC San Diego’s student code of conduct (PPM 160) has been revised to take into account the COVID-19 pandemic and recent changes to the Sexual Violence Sexual Harassment policy per the Department of Education. The Interim Student COVID-19 Code of Conduct is available here.

Academic Instruction

Where can I find information about Fall 2020 classroom logistics and teaching technology upgrades?

Please visit the Return to Learn Academics page for detailed information regarding classroom safety plans and precautions and upgrades to classroom technology.

How many faculty members are going to be on campus this Fall?

As of Monday, September 14, 1,282 faculty and other academic appointees have been approved for on-site access through the Research Ramp Up system. Fewer than 100 instructors-of-record have chosen to come to campus to teach in person. Not all those approved for on-campus work will be present on campus at the same time; individuals’ use of campus is staggered to ensure we stay below 25% occupancy of all buildings at any given time. If faculty wish to access their offices, they need to submit a request through their department's Return to Campus plan.

What items will be provided for cleaning, safety and PPE for faculty members teaching on campus this Fall? How do faculty need to prepare?

UC San Diego has been working diligently to prepare classrooms for in-person teaching. 

Cleaning
There will be cleaning wipes and hand sanitizer in each classroom.

Microphones
About half of the classrooms have microphones built into the ceiling. The other half of the classrooms being used will require lapel microphones. For these larger classrooms, lapel microphones will be individually bagged and left in classroom lecterns. Faculty teaching in these larger classrooms should take one mic to use as their dedicated microphone for the quarter.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Faculty should work with their departments to obtain Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including masks and gloves, for their personal use. Departments will work with IPPS Logistics and Procurement teams to purchase the PPE through Oracle Procurement. Departments can visit the PPE STORE Program blink page for detailed guidance on ordering PPE from Logistics via Oracle Procurement. Procedures for both research and non-research employees may be found here.

Extra masks for students
Faculty should have extra masks on hand in the classroom to give to any students who may forget to wear a mask to class. Packets of masks have been distributed to the academic divisions and schools. Faculty may contact their department to obtain a package of these masks.

What are the university’s plans for outdoor instruction this Fall?

Following an extensive inventory of potential alternative classroom spaces, we have identified about 20 outdoor locations across campus that may be suitable for instruction and/or student support services, based on electrical power access, shade, acoustic isolation, ADA accessibility, and capacity for social distancing. In the Fall quarter, we will set up four 50-person tents equipped with electrical, AV, and Zoom capacity. Several smaller tents will be available for office hours, TA work and other student support needs. Once the outdoor spaces have been completed, the Registrar’s Office will work with departments to identify appropriate courses that can take advantage of this option, as public health regulations permit.

Faculty interested in hosting their course in one of the limited outdoor teaching spaces should speak with their department scheduler to determine whether that request can be accommodated. Please note that, in accordance with state guidelines, instructors can only host in-person classes in their designated spaces. Faculty and TAs are not permitted to provide instruction to students in-person in a personal office, a random spot outdoors, or any other space that has not been specifically approved for instructional purposes.

Can a faculty member use their campus office to conduct remote instruction sessions?

In order to maintain compliance with state and county health orders, the campus must maintain building occupancy below 25% at all times. Therefore, *anyone* wishing to use their office for teaching or other work must first gain written approval through their department’s Return to Campus plan. Please contact your department chair, dean, or provost about this; they will be compiling a plan and submitting it for approval. As an alternative, the campus is in the process of readying four specially prepared classrooms for faculty who need a quiet place to teach, either to pre-record lectures or to conduct live Zoom sessions. Reservation details will soon be available on the Return to Learn Academics page.

What are the expectations for using synchronous vs. asynchronous teaching this fall?

We start from the equity and access premise that we need to structure our courses so that all the students in them can access course materials and participate fully. Some students will have challenges around unstable internet, a computer that breaks down, lack of a private space from which to attend class, a job schedule that changes abruptly, illness, or being in another time zone. Synchronous elements of a course can be very powerful for students’ learning. So when they are used, one needs to make sure there is a way for students who are unable to be present at that moment to have an equivalent experience, not just from the perspective of earning course points but in order to learn about the subject, from the instructor and their peers.

How is the campus supporting international scholars who are unable to return from abroad for Fall 2020?

Our International Scholars and Programs Office is in close contact with international scholars to provide assistance as needed. Returning students holding an active SEVIS record, including those who are outside the United States, are eligible to enroll in a fully remote course load for the Fall quarter, maintain their F-1 status, and seek re-entry into the U.S. In addition, they will be permitted to temporarily count online classes towards a full course of study in excess of the regulatory limits. Additional information about immigration policy updates is available here.

Is it possible for international graduate students to fulfill their TA responsibilities remotely and receive compensation for doing so?

It is possible, however important procedural issues must be followed. Students should consult with their department graduate program coordinator, who can interface with the Graduate Division on their behalf.

How can faculty teaching remotely ensure appropriate assessment?

Course instructors determine the most appropriate method for assessing student learning in their course and are strongly encouraged to consider pedagogical best practices to support student success in the remote and hybrid learning environment. Please review the April 2020 recommendations regarding remote course exams, other assessments, and available proctoring services.

The Teaching + Learning Commons offers resources and guidelines to help faculty develop remote assessments that enable students to demonstrate their knowledge, inform future instruction, and improve student success. Review their strategies and resources for remote assessments, which includes instructions for creating exams in Canvas, and be sure to reference the complete guide to assessing student learning in remote instruction.

In addition, the Academic Integrity Office provides guidance for choosing the right assesment for your course, and offers strategies and resources for supporting integrity in the remote learning environment. The Teaching + Learning Commons, Educational Technology Services, and Academic Integrity Office have partnered to offer webinars for faculty related to common questions about remote instruction, including well-designed remote assessments and going remote with integrity.

For personalized support with remote instruction and pedagogical best practices in the remote leaning environment, request a confidential teaching consultation with an education specialist or email engagedteaching@ucsd.edu.

Will UC San Diego offer on-campus instruction in the Fall 2020 quarter?

For Fall Quarter 2020, it is UC San Diego's intention to offer some in-person or hybrid courses across all divisions, colleges, and programs. The latest information on the Fall 2020 return to campus plan will be routinely updated and is available here

Why has UC San Diego decided to offer in-person instruction this Fall?

For some UC San Diego students, our campus serves as their home as well as a place to learn. In addition to incoming students, we have thousands living in campus housing who have been here since before the COVID-19 pandemic began. We need to learn how to support our students and continue to carry out our education, research and public service mission in the context of the pandemic. To this end, UC San Diego has engaged a dedicated collective of faculty, administrators, and public health experts in developing our campus Return to Learn program on the foundation of three adaptive pillars: transmission reduction tactics, monitoring viral activity, and public health interventions. While we can't completely eliminate all risk of COVID-19 transmission among the campus population, we believe we can significantly reduce the risks by collectively following our Return to Learn model and the safety practices detailed here

How will the university ensure that faculty and students have access to appropriate technology resources to support a remote learning environment?

For information on remote/online teaching resources, please visit KeepTeaching.ucsd.edu.  Additional information may be found at the Educational Continuity site. Information for students regarding resources to support remote learning may be found here.

Will the Media Lab be open in the Fall and will students be able to check-out sanitized production gear for use in their classes?

Media Lab equipment check out services will be open via curbside pickup during Fall 2020. Information about the new curbside pickup procedures is available here.

When will students and faculty have access to the Library buildings and physical collections?

For the safety and wellbeing of our community, Geisel Library and the Biomedical Library Building remain closed until further notice, however, many Library services remain available. Find up to date information on current Library services here.

If an instructor is at high risk due to age or an underlying condition, or prefers not to teach in-person this Fall due to safety concerns, will they be excused from being on-site?

Our first concern is the safety of our campus community. Instructors and TAs have the choice to teach remotely during the fall if they prefer to do so. Any faculty member with personal health and/or safety concerns should contact their department chair/provost/director to make appropriate plans. Any TA with personal health and/or safety concerns should speak with their instructor of record/department chair/divisional dean to make appropriate plans for Fall. Additional information about this topic for faculty is available on the Academic Personnel FAQ page here.

What are the key aspects of UC San Diego’s preparation for Return to Learn that reflect lessons from peer institutions?

Because UC San Diego's academic year begins September 28 this year, we have also learned from our peer institutions on earlier academic calendars and have adapted our plan to reflect lessons learned. Those best practices include widespread and consistent testing, staggered move-in schedules, clear and frequent communication to the campus community and to our neighbors. We have also confirmed from our peers that the transmission of the virus is much more likely to happen outside of the classroom, where many safety precautions will be in place to protect our students, faculty and staff. Less than 10% of our undergraduate courses will be held in person and fewer than 100 instructors-of-record will be teaching in-person this Fall.

Privacy

What is employee health and who manages it?

UC San Diego Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine (COEM) delivers comprehensive services for employees, including on-site physicals, consults, tests, and vaccinations, which are all UC San Diego employer-paid services to meet the employer’s health and safety responsibilities under OSHA and labor laws.

Where are the most up-to-date privacy practices described for the Campus Employee Health Management Program?

The most-up-to-date privacy practices can be found at the Employee Health Management Program Privacy Practices webpage.

What is the difference between how my electronic health record will be used for employee health management purposes and my own personal health management?

Your electronic health record will be used for two separate purposes: your personal health care, if you choose to receive care from UC San Diego Health, and for employer-paid health management purposes. A personal patient medical record is created by a health care provider when a person receives medical treatment from a health care provider. An employee health record is used any time an employer has to keep health and safety records that contain health information about employees. Examples of this kind of information would be notes for sick leave, disability limitations for disability accommodations, mandatory vaccinations and health tests, etc.

UC San Diego Health has implemented specific administrative and technical privacy and security safeguards that limit employee health from viewing your full personal health record and information. For example, employee health will not be able to see your personal physician notes because technical safeguard barriers have been put in place to separate employee health information from personal health information.

At UC San Diego, for employees who work in Health Sciences, it has been standard practice for many years for employee health records to be stored in the same electronic system as personal patient records to ensure that those employee health records receive a high level of privacy and security. This benefit has not historically been available to UC San Diego employees who work on the main campus and at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, but for COVID-19 related information, campus employees will have their employee health records stored in the same manner so that their records receive the same level of confidentiality and privacy protection as the records of health employees. Campus HR, your department, and supervisor do not and will not have access to Epic, the electronic health recordkeeping system.

Why am I being asked for permission to use my Social Security Number?

One of the biggest challenges for any recordkeeping system is ensuring that records are accurate. With tens of thousands of employees and hundreds of thousands of patients at UC San Diego, it is inevitable that many people will share the same name and sometimes even the same date of birth. As a result, it is possible for a recordkeeping system to accidentally associate records with the wrong person. Use of Social Security Numbers helps reduce the risk of this kind of misidentification by providing another data point that is unique to each individual.

Am I required to authorize use of my SSN? What happens if I don’t consent?

You are not required to authorize use of your SSN. This request is made under the authority of the Regents of the University of California under Art. IX, Sec. 9 of the California Constitution. You may opt out of allowing use of your SSN by unchecking on the registration form the “I agree to share my social security number (SSN) with the University of California Health System” checkbox at the bottom of the form. For employees who opt out of sharing their SSN, their SSN will NOT be used. In that case, an employee health record will be created using name, date of birth, address, and gender.

My supervisor told me participation in the Campus Health Management Program is mandatory. Can you specify what parts of the program are required?

If you will be physically on-site, you are required to complete the daily symptom and exposure screening survey. If you will be physically on-site, and you test positive for COVID-19 (at UC San Diego Health or anywhere else), you are required to notify the UC San Diego Center for Occupational and Environmental Medicine (COEM) at COEMexposure@health.ucsd.edu so that they can coordinate with public health and the contact tracing team for case investigation/contact tracing, monitor symptoms, and provide release from work and return to work documentation if seen at COEM. Use of your SSN is voluntary, and you have the ability to opt-out. For those who opt-out, an employee health record will be created using name, date of birth, address and gender. If you would like to take advantage of UC San Diego’s program of no-cost COVID-19 testing and vaccine, when it is available, you must have an employee health record.

What happens if I don’t complete the Work and Health Management Registration form?

If not completed, employees will receive a short notice upon logging into any application that uses UC San Diego’s Single Sign-On (SSO) functionality. For those who do not register by August 20, 2020 we will assume that they have chosen not to allow use of their SSN for the creation of an employee health record.

I am not a UC San Diego Health patient. Why does an electronic health record need to be created for me?

An employee health record is used to manage employer health and safety compliance requirements, such as tests and vaccines paid for by the employer (as opposed to payments through insurance), as well as documentation of compliance with mandatory health requirements such as vaccinations and medical tests, regardless of where those health services are obtained. As with any employer that has health and safety requirements, these records must be maintained in a secure and protected environment.

I am planning on receiving a COVID-19 test and vaccine, when it’s available, from my own non-UC San Diego healthcare provider. Why does an electronic health record need to be created for me?

An employee health record is used to manage employer health and safety compliance requirements, such as tests and vaccines paid for by the employer (as opposed to payments through insurance), as well as documentation of compliance with mandatory health requirements such as vaccinations and medical tests, regardless of where those health services are obtained. As with any employer that has health and safety requirements, these records must be maintained in a secure and protected environment.

I am working remotely for the foreseeable future. Why does an electronic medical record for me need to be created or my existing electronic health record be flagged as an employee?

An employee health record is used to manage employer health and safety compliance requirements, such as tests and vaccines paid for by the employer (as opposed to payments through insurance), as well as documentation of compliance with mandatory health requirements such as vaccinations and medical tests, regardless of where those health services are obtained. As with any employer that has health and safety requirements, these records must be maintained in a secure and protected environment. The creation of the employee health record will greatly expedite this process when you do return to campus.

I am an existing UC San Diego Health patient. What will my employer see in my personal patient record?

Nothing. However, your employer will be notified whether you are compliant with employee health management requirements, such as vaccinations.

Your personal health care provider (i.e., your PCP) will be able to see your entire medical record in Epic in order to provide you with comprehensive care.

“Blinders” will be on for COEM users. When COEM staff log into Epic and open your chart, we change their view of Epic. We limit where they can go within your chart and change their view so they can only see employee health related info, such as notes from employee health (not from your personal physician), COVID testing, vaccinations and other mandated employee health requirements. We put in technological guardrails so COEM can’t see your full medical record.

Return to Learn facilitators do not have access to your EHR record. However, they will receive aggregated reports and extracts of employees' health info to show things like compliance with mandates and COVID positive rates for campus employees. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

HR and/or supervisors do not have access to your EHR record. However, they may get notifications for clearances to return to work and compliance with employee health mandates. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

I am an existing UC San Diego Health patient. Will my personal healthcare provider at UC San Diego Health see my employee health record?

Yes, your personal UC San Diego Health provider will see your employee health record, such as vaccinations and COVID-19 test results, in order to provide comprehensive care to you.

Your personal health care provider (i.e., your PCP) will be able to see your entire medical record in Epic in order to provide you with comprehensive care.

“Blinders” will be on for COEM users. When COEM staff log into Epic and open your chart, we change their view of Epic. We limit where they can go within your chart and change their view so they can only see employee health related info, such as notes from employee health (not from your personal physician), COVID testing, vaccinations and other mandated employee health requirements. We put in technological guardrails so COEM can’t see your full medical record.

Return to Learn facilitators do not have access to your EHR record. However, they will receive aggregated reports and extracts of employees' health info to show things like compliance with mandates and COVID positive rates for campus employees. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

HR and/or supervisors do not have access to your EHR record. However, they may get notifications for clearances to return to work and compliance with employee health mandates. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

Why will my employee health information be housed in Epic?

UC San Diego values the privacy of its employees and wants to offer a high level of privacy and security for personal information. The Epic electronic health system complies with the very strict privacy and security requirements of HIPAA, is monitored by UC San Diego Information Security, is regularly audited by the UC San Diego Office of Privacy and Compliance, and is the most secure record-keeping system that we have for health information. COEM leverages this secure system to manage employee health. COEM is already involved with the campus employee health management, where the record system that is used is Epic. Epic is the most efficient and secure system to manage employee health information.

What information will be stored in my employee health record?

All employer-paid tests and vaccinations, as well as documentation of such tests and vaccinations received from other health care providers, will be stored in your employee health record.

Is my employee health information disclosed outside of UC San Diego?

Your employee health information may be disclosed to governmental licensing, auditing, and accrediting agencies, as authorized or required by law.

What information in my electronic health record related to employee health will be accessible or visible to HR or my supervisor?

Nothing; HR and your supervisor will NOT have access to your electronic health record. However, Campus HR and your supervisor will receive documentation of whether you are cleared to return to work or on-site and compliance with testing and vaccination requirements.

Will my electronic health record for employee health management purposes be used for research?

Human subjects research is governed by federal law and regulations and subject to review and approval by UC San Diego’s Institutional Review Board. The confidentiality of electronic health records is guaranteed by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Electronic health records may only be used for research purposes in accordance with applicable regulations and University policies.

The use of electronic health record data is essential for clinical research. Similarly, pandemic related surveillance is essential in protecting our workforce while we pursue our missions as a University. The electronic health record (EHR) is a key technology for both endeavors, but this creates potential privacy concerns as employees will have EHR records that can be used for clinical research without explicit consent subject to specific controls set forth under federal and state law.

To allay these concerns, we are implementing a mechanism to automatically exclude employee EHR records from data extractions for clinical research that involves a waiver of HIPAA authorization. This exclusion will apply to both to UCSD employees who only have a record on the basis of employee health pandemic surveillance as well as those who routinely receive care at UCSD Health and have a full patient record.

The technical control to be used will be a VIP employee flag to be set in all employee EHR records. This flag will designate that record as excluded from an EHR based “Research Registry”, which will be established as the allowable cohort for clinical research data extractions conducted under waiver of HIPAA authorization. Going forward, the Clinical Research Information Officer will work with the Office of Compliance and Privacy and the Associate Vice Chancellor of Health Sciences Research to review this process on a regular basis in the event further adjustments are needed to ensure employees who have records in our EHR have the opportunity to participate in research, if they desire, while continuing to preserve the privacy of those who have not assented through a HIPAA authorization.

To whom will employee test results be disclosed outside of UC San Diego?

Positive COVID-19 test results are reported to public health agencies, such as San Diego County public health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as required by law. We may disclose your information to governmental licensing, auditing, regulatory, and accrediting agencies, as authorized or required by law. International students, scholars, and post-docs, please see below.

I’m an international student, scholar, or post-doc. With whom do you share my COVID-19 test result?

As required by the U.S. Department of State, we are required to report any positive cases of a communicable disease to the State Department within 24 hours.

If I test positive for COVID-19, will my contact tracing information be in my electronic health record?

No, this information is kept in a secure database, separate from your electronic health record.

Is my case investigation information used for employment purposes?

No. Your case investigation information does not impact your employment. Case investigation is a public health process to determine if an individual with a communicable or infectious disease has exposed others to that disease.

In the process of case investigation, if we identify other persons exposed, will their information be shared with government agencies?

There is mandatory reporting to the San Diego County Department of Public Health of individuals who are positive-SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 and of their close contacts.

In the process of case investigation, if we identify other persons exposed, who has access to my contact list?

UC San Diego Family Medicine and Public Health, COEM, and Student Health Services have access to the contact information. The university will use this information to contact others who may have been exposed without revealing your identity.

What protections are in place for my employee health information?

We maintain technical, physical, and administrative safeguards to protect the security, integrity, and privacy of employee health records in Epic, including the following practices:

  • To ensure even more privacy protection for UC San Diego employees and students, the records of all UC San Diego employees and students stored in Epic will be coded at the “break the glass” level of privacy protection. Records coded as “break the glass” require a specific justification for access;
  • Electronic health records are subject to frequent privacy audits by UC San Diego’s Office of Compliance and Privacy;
  • UC San Diego Health adheres to University of California requirements described in IS-3 UCOP Policy (Electronic Information Security) in order to secure your information;
  • Information is housed on systems stored in controlled facilities with limited access;
  • Encryption, such as the Secure Socket Layer (SSL), is used to protect the transmission of your information over the Internet;
  • Security technologies and procedures are used to help protect your personal information from unauthorized access, use, or disclosures;
  • Data access is limited only to authorized personnel;
  • All authorized personnel are informed of their obligation to maintain the privacy, security, and confidentiality of information;
  • All authorized UC San Diego Health personnel who will have access to your electronic health record are trained in privacy and security obligations.

Your personal health care provider (i.e., your PCP) will be able to see your entire medical record in Epic in order to provide you with comprehensive care.

“Blinders” will be on for COEM users. When COEM staff log into Epic and open your chart, we change their view of Epic. We limit where they can go within your chart and change their view so they can only see employee health related info, such as notes from employee health (not from your personal physician), COVID testing, vaccinations and other mandated employee health requirements. We put in technological guardrails so COEM can’t see your full medical record.

Return to Learn facilitators do not have access to your EHR record. However, they will receive aggregated reports and extracts of employees' health info to show things like compliance with mandates and COVID positive rates for campus employees. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

HR and/or supervisors do not have access to your EHR record. However, they may get notifications for clearances to return to work and compliance with employee health mandates. They will not get any information about your personal health information.

How will you make sure that my personal patient information is not accessible by my employer?

HR and your supervisor will not have access to your electronic health record. However, your supervisor will be notified of your clearance to return to work and compliance with various employee health requirements (i.e., flu vaccine).

Neither Campus HR nor supervisors have access to your EHR record. However, they may get notifications for clearances to return to work, compliance with employee health mandates. They will not get any information about your personal health information. Please see the diagram above for who has access to what information in your electronic health records.

How long will you maintain my employee health information?

Your employee health information will be maintained for 20 years. For more information, please see the Campus Health Management Privacy Practices Page.

How will this impact my insurance plans and premiums?

The employer-paid COVID test and results will not be shared with your insurance carriers.

I understand the benefits of the program and the safeguards provided through Epic. However, I still do not want an electronic health record created for me or my personal patient record associated with my status as an employee. What are the consequences of that?

One of UC San Diego’s signature public-health initiatives and something that we believe will set UC San Diego apart from all other institutions of higher education in the country is our plan to offer a program of broad asymptomatic testing for students, faculty, and staff to detect the presence of the novel coronavirus. Significantly and uniquely, tests provided by UC San Diego Health will be at no cost to participating students, faculty, and staff, and perhaps equally important, we are striving to make test results available in as little as 24 hours, which would be far quicker than most other testing facilities can deliver. Those who do not have an employee health record will not be eligible for the benefits of the program, such as no-cost COVID-19 testing. They will still be required to provide proof of employment-related health requirements (e.g., COVID-19 positive test results, vaccinations) but will not be able to take advantage of the technical protections offered through Epic.

Who do I contact if I have more questions?

If you have any questions about:

Will I be automatically notified if someone that works in my facility on campus tests positive for COVID-19?

Current health privacy rules restrict automatic notifications of someone who tests positive for COVID-19 to employees working in the same building. In order to receive a notification, you must be deemed a “close contact” by a healthcare provider or public health official. A close contact is anyone that has been within six feet for more than 15 minutes or had direct physical contact of the confirmed case (this will be determined on a case-by-case basis). A contact tracing team will identify and contact individuals that are considered close contacts. Those identified as close contacts will receive a phone call providing medical guidance including self-isolation instructions and duration, a phone number to contact if they develop symptoms, and guidance on the return-to-work process.

If you are NOT contacted, you are not considered a close contact and should continue to use general precautions to protect yourself and others when at work. Public health officials have determined there is a low risk of exposure to individuals not considered a close contact.

How is informed consent obtained for any research use of the data?

The use of electronic health record data is essential for clinical research. Similarly, pandemic related surveillance is essential in protecting our workforce while we pursue our missions as a University. The electronic health record (EHR) is a key technology for both endeavors, but this creates potential privacy concerns as employees will have EHR records that can be used for clinical research without explicit consent subject to specific controls set forth under federal and state law.

To allay these concerns, we are implementing a mechanism to automatically exclude employee EHR records from data extractions for clinical research that involves a waiver of HIPAA authorization. This exclusion will apply to both to UCSD employees who only have a record on the basis of employee health pandemic surveillance as well as those who routinely receive care at UCSD Health and have a full patient record.

The technical control to be used will be a VIP employee flag to be set in all employee EHR records. This flag will designate that record as excluded from an EHR based “Research Registry”, which will be established as the allowable cohort for clinical research data extractions conducted under waiver of HIPAA authorization. Going forward, the Clinical Research Information Officer will work with the Office of Compliance and Privacy and the Senior Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Sciences to review this process on a regular basis in the event further adjustments are needed to ensure employees who have records in our EHR have the opportunity to participate in research, if they desire, while continuing to preserve the privacy of those who have not assented through a HIPAA authorization.

Will individuals have to consent to changes in information gathered or access policies?

Changes will be communicated via the Privacy Statement and denoted with an updated effective date. Individuals will be asked to consent when a change requires consent.

How can individuals view and correct these records?

For all Protected Health Information that is stored within your Electronic Health Record, Your rights to inspect and request a copy, etc. can be found in the UC San Diego Health Notice of Privacy Practices.

What kinds of community input will be solicited to inform this process?

We welcome any questions and suggestions. We use Town Hall virtual meetings, newsletters, Return to Learn and Pulse websites to post information which always includes contact information for the community to pose questions, suggestions and concerns.

If screening information is not maintained in the electronic health records, where will they be kept?

The screening information is stored in the Qualtrics system, which is administered by UC San Diego Health Information Services.

Research

What are the determining factors in moving from the Orange Phase for conduct of research to the Yellow and eventually Green phases?

The Chancellor, in adherence with state and local directives and in consultation with university leaders, epidemiologists, and infectious disease experts, will determine when conditions require or permit transitioning from one phase to another. Detailed phase descriptions and guidelines are available here.

Where can I find information regarding the status of my Return to Research application?

To find out the status of your Research Ramp Up Plan, or to access a completed plan for edits or additions, please email researchrampup@ucsd.edu.

Is there a timeline for research ramp-up to next phases?

Other Support

What resources are available to support faculty with caregiving responsibilities?

Many in our community are balancing work, childcare and other caregiving responsibilities. Visit Parent and Family Resources to connect to information about programs and services within the UC community and beyond designed to support parents and families during COVID-19.

You can also visit Resources for Families at Home to connect to regional childcare programs, virtual entertainment opportunities, the Early Care & Education virtual classroom, and additional resources to help caregivers during this difficult time. Check out the Community Activities page for information related to K-12 closures, at-home activities for all, and virtual community events.

Faculty are welcome to join the several groups available to connect with and support fellow Triton caregivers, including 0-5 working moms and eldercare. Visit Support for Parents and Caregivers for details about the different support groups or check out the Parents, Guardians & Caregivers Association.

Early Care & Education aims to resume operations as safely and efficiently as possible. Be sure to visit Returning to Childcare during the COVID-19 Pandemic  for details from the Early Childhood and Education Center.

In what ways will disruptions to teaching and research be incorporated into the pre-tenure review process?

To address the potential impacts the global pandemic may have on the teaching, research, and service responsibilities of faculty members, the Chancellor, EVC, and Academic Senate have implemented an automatic "stop the clock" one-year extension for assistant-level appointees during their probationary period. Senior academic appointees may choose to defer their academic review for one year.  Refer to the March 24, 2020 campus notice for more information, and please review the COVID-19 Probationary Period Extension and Academic Deferral Toolkit for additional details.

The administration and Academic Senate are in full concert regarding the need for faculty to document and reviewers to be mindful of the challenges that individuals may have faced during these challenging times. To that end, departments are encouraged to have candidates routinely include brief, self-evaluation statements in their future academic review files so they may express in their own words how the pandemic affected their academic performance and other research and service responsibilities. Departments may also wish to reconsider the evaluation standards used for this period in light of the many challenges as well as opportunities presented by the evolving global pandemic and remote learning environment. Please refer to the May 29, 2020 campus notice for more information about academic file reviews.

What are the Fall quarter faculty residency requirements?

Fall quarter residency requirements will vary by job and function. Visit the Academic Affairs FAQ on Leave and Remote Work Provisions page for information related to COVID-19 for Faculty and Academic Appointees for general information and consult with your department and divisional leadership for guidance on what applies to you.

Is there a plan to increase resources at Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) for students?

Yes. This spring quarter, students voted to approve the Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) & Student Mental Health Fee Referendum, which will expand and increase the availability of CAPS and mental health services for all students, and increase funding to improve student mental health support and education. This is in addition to campus investments in new CAPS staff resources added in the Winter and Spring quarters, which expanded both in-person and telehealth opportunities. Faculty and staff also play a crucial role in helping to create a culture of care for UC San Diego students. For important resources for faculty and staff, please visit: Creating a Culture of Care: Resources for Faculty and Staff to Support Students in Distress.

Will a student’s financial aid be impacted if they decide to move out of campus housing after the fall quarter begins?

Please visit the Financial Aid and Scholarships FAQ page for information regarding COVID-19 impacts on financial aid and scholarships.

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