Duke has offered various types of testing during the COVID-19 pandemic, entry and exit testing at the beginning and end of the semester, surveillance testing, and symptomatic testing. Testing options may vary by semester based on campus operations and current case trends.

Any student, faculty, or staff member who becomes symptomatic or is referred by either Employee Health or Student Health should not participate in surveillance testing. Student Health or Employee Health will advise where individuals should be tested.


Students experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should use the SymMon app to report their symptoms or contact Student Health by email (dshcheckin@duke.edu) or by phone during business hours at 919-681-9355 and choose option 2 to speak to a triage nurse.


Employees experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 complete a symptom report, either through the SymMon app or through your personal REDCap survey queue link. You must self-isolate until cleared by Employee Health to return to work.

Close Contact of Positive Individual

Any vaccinated student considered to be a close contact of a positive individual should get tested and wear a mask at all times

2023 Spring Semester

  • All students should get a negative COVID test before arriving on campus, preferably within 72 hours of arrival. Test results are not required to be submitted to Duke, but participation is considered as part of the Duke Community Standard.
  • Any student who tests positive should contact Student Health and delay their arrival until cleared by Student Health.
  • Duke will continue to offer limited surveillance testing for asymptomatic students, faculty and staff until Friday, March 10, 2023. The following two test sites will be available from 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday until that time.
  • At-home antigen tests will be available through the Duke Stores’ Service Desk in the Bryan Center. One test kit per week is available at no charge to anyone with a valid DukeCard. 

Surveillance testing is available, but no longer required for students or unvaccinated individuals. However, those who are unvaccinated remain at higher risk for severe illness related to COVID-19 and should consider getting vaccinated to protect themselves and others at risk for severe illness.

Test sites at the following locations are open from 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Monday – Thursday until Friday, March 10, 2023.

Levine Science Research Center: Lobby 100

Washington Duke Inn, Varsity Golf Center. (See map for location)

Surveillance test sites will be closed on Monday, Jan. 16 in observance of MLK Day.

Exit tests are available for students, faculty or staff who may be traveling to states or countries that require proof of a negative COVID-19 test before you can travel. Note that regular surveillance testing will NOT fulfill this requirement.

Students and others who need proof of a negative COVID-19 test to travel can get a PCR test from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday at one of the on-campus testing locations.

Please inform the staff at the test site that you need an “exit test” rather than a surveillance test. Results take at least 24 hours, so please plan accordingly.

The self-administered surveillance testing process should take about 5 minutes, and collection sites will be established in multiple locations on East and West campuses for convenience. Below are the steps for the screening process:

Step 1: Select participants will receive an email with details about when to conduct a surveillance test.

Step 2: On the day for their test, participants should visit one of community screening collection sites on the campus where they reside or work.

Step 3: Participants should arrive at the test site with their DukeCard ID or phone with the SymMon app (be sure you have the latest version). You will use your SymMon app to scan your test kit or a  site coordinator will scan your DukeCard ID and provide you with a test kit.

Step 4: Testing will be self-administered and should only take about 5 minutes to complete.

Testing will involve inserting a cotton swab into each nasal passage and rotating it against the inner nasal lining in a circle three times. The swab does not need to be inserted far – just enough so the cotton tip is no longer visible.

The swab is then placed into a collection tube with a bar code, which will be placed in a bag and then deposited into a cooler at the collection site.

That’s it.

Pooled testing of samples will be conducted by the Duke Human Vaccine Institute. Results from tests typically take about 48 hours. You will only be contacted if the results are positive for COVID-19, at which point you will receive further medical guidance and support.

If you have a positive COVID test that has not yet been reported to Employee Health or Student Health, please follow the instructions below:

Home or outside positive test results must be submitted through the REDCap system.

  1. Access REDCap through your personal survey queue link, which can be obtained by visiting dco31.oit.duke.edu/statuscheck or by going to Check Duke Card status in SymMon.
  2. In REDCap, select the “Submit External Labs” option.
  3. Follow instructions on the screen to complete the submission.

Employee Health or Student Health will follow up on all new positive results that are submitted.

If I tested positive for COVID within 90 days before coming to campus, do I still need to get a negative test before arriving?

No, if you are within 90 days of testing positive, no test is required before coming to campus as long as you are asymptomatic. If you you have any COVID-like symptoms within 90 days from a previous COVID infection, then testing for COVID should be considered in consultation with your local healthcare provider.

What happens if a student tests positive for COVID-19? 

Students who test positive will be required to wear a well-fitted mask and isolate for a minimum of 5 days before returning to work or class and continuing to wear a mask for another 5 days. Health sciences students will be required to observe the longer isolation requirement (7 days) for those working in the healthcare environment.

Residential students who test positive will be allowed to isolate in place within their residential hall room or apartment while wearing a well-fitted mask until released by Student Health.

How can a student testing COVID positive and living on campus get food?

Students can pick up food from on-campus dining facilities but must remain in a mask at all times outside of their residential room assignment. Students should not be eating in the dining facilities if they tested positive. Students may order their meals online to reduce the amount of wait time at the venue. Find out how to order from Duke Dine-Out. Students may also arrange for a classmate to pick up food or can have their meals delivered through Duke Dining’s Merchants-on-Points program.

Will students who are required to isolate after testing positive for COVID be able to attend in classes in person?

No, students cannot attend in-person classes during their isolation period. Students who test positive isolate for a minimum of five days. After the initial 5 days of isolation, students must continue wearing a mask for another 5 days and not eat in congregate settings. Note: Health sciences students are required to observe the longer isolation requirement (7 days) for those working in the healthcare environment.

Are lectures/classes available online or students in isolation?

Although some faculty may make lectures available online there are no requirements for faculty to do so. Students should fill out the short-term incapacitation form and notify their academic dean about time missed.

What should a student do if his/her roommate tests positive for COVID?

Roommates who have been exposed will need to test and wear a mask to reduce further exposure or infection.

  • Roommates who have COVID symptoms should submit them using the SymMon app or contact Student Health to get tested.
  • If asymptomatic, the roommate should seek an Exit test at one of the four surveillance testing sites on campus or get a PCR test at another provider.

If the roommate tests positive, he or she should contact Student Health, wear a well-fitted mask and isolate for a minimum of five days before returning to work or class and continuing to wear a mask for another five days. Roommates living on campus who test negative and are considered medically high-risk may be relocated to alternative housing upon request (roommate’s positive test must be conducted at or reported to Student Health).

Can a medically high-risk roommate be moved to alternative housing before receiving a negative test result?

A negative PCR test result is required before relocating a student living on campus whose roommate tested positive to avoid potential exposure of other individuals.

Undergraduates: Undergraduates with questions should email survtest@duke.edu.

Graduate & Professional Students: If you have received a testing message and don’t plan to be in Durham for the semester, please contact your program (see list of names/emails below) and ask to be removed from the entry and surveillance testing processes.

If you fail to report for testing on your scheduled date, your DukeCard will remain inactive (with the exception of students who have been approved to access clinical and research settings) until you are tested, and your name will be reported to your program leadership.

SchoolCompliance ContactsEmails
Fuqua* Fuqua Testing Teamtesting@fuqua.duke.edu
Sanford*Sanford COVID Teamsanford_covid@duke.edu
LawSuze Bearbear@law.duke.edu
Pratt*Bradley Foxbrad.fox@duke.edu
NSOE*NSOE COVID Teamnicholas_covid_questions@nicholas.duke.edu
NSOE – Marine LabMarine Lab COVID Teamduml_covid_questions@nicholas.duke.edu
DivinityCathy Watsoncwatson@div.duke.edu
SON*Bebe Millsbebe.mills@duke.edu
SOMKaren Tesorierokaren.tesoriero@duke.edu
SOM – Basic Science MS
and PhD students
Beth SullivanOBGE@duke.edu
The Graduate School – does not include Basic Science MS and PhD studentsHelene McAdamsgrad-surveillance-testing@duke.edu
*Follow-up regarding surveillance testing for PhD students in these schools is managed by The Graduate School (grad-surveillance-testing@duke.edu).