Campus Return Plan

UBC requires COVID-19 rapid testing for all students, faculty and staff, with exemptions provided for those who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 
Find out more about the required COVID-19 Rapid Testing Program.

As the university prepares for a return to campus during Winter Session, Term 1, students, faculty and staff may have many questions.

With the guidance of the Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, and public health teams in the health authorities, UBC is planning a return to on-campus activity. Faculties are planning the fall course schedule, with as much on-campus instruction for our students as possible, subject to ongoing public health guidance.

The health and wellbeing of our UBC community remain our first priority. As such, we are embarking on further planning, in collaboration with public health, to accommodate more on-campus activities. We have also streamlined the COVID-19 Safety Plan process, informed by new COVID-19 Return-to-Campus Guidelines.

This page contains useful FAQs and resources to help you navigate your return to campus. Please note that individual Faculties are also providing updates. For health and COVID-19 vaccine-related guidance, you should visit the Health guidance and vaccines section.

Illustration of a person wearing a mask

On this page:

Teaching and Learning

Research

Buildings

Getting to and from campus

Safety Planning


Teaching and Learning

  • Is UBC holding in-person classes for the 2021/22 Winter Session?

    Is UBC holding in-person classes for the 2021/22 Winter Session?

    Yes. UBC is conducting in-person classes for the 2021/22 Winter Session. The health, safety and wellbeing of our students, faculty and staff remain our first priority. For those returning to in-person teaching and learning, research, or working on campus, we want to help you resume activity in a way that best supports the safety and wellbeing of all members of our community. Here’s what you need to do to help ensure a safe environment for yourself and those around you:

    • Know the symptoms of COVID-19 and complete a daily health assessment. If you are sick, stay at home. Learn about the self-assessment tool at https://bc.thrive.health.
    • Make sure you have a non-medical mask, as they are required in public indoor spaces on campus including classrooms. 
    • Wash your hands regularly.
    • If you are not yet vaccinated, make a plan to receive your COVID-19 vaccination. You can book your first and second doses via https://immunizebc.ca. Drop-ins are welcome at all Vancouver Coastal Health clinics. For details visit http://www.vch.ca/covid-19/covid-19-vaccine#vaccination. In the Okanagan, information about immunization clinics can be found at https://news.interiorhealth.ca/news/covid-19-immunization-clinics/.
    • As a reminder, in BC, free vaccines are available to students arriving from international destinations and other provinces. 

    The BC Centre for Disease Control and BC Ministry of Health have issued return to campus public health guidance. You can find details at http://www.bccdc.ca/Health-Info-Site/Documents/COVID_public_guidance/Public_Health_Guidance_Campus.pdf.

  • Are student residences open?

    Are student residences open?

    Yes. UBC Student Housing is accommodating upper-year and graduate students in our Winter Session (September to April) residences on both campuses and year-round residences in Vancouver. UBC Student Housing is also providing Winter Session accommodation for eligible first-year residents in all first-year residence communities beginning this fall, 2021.

    We recognize that many of our undergraduate students will be entering their second year, but will be part of the campus community for the first time. We have given significant consideration to this unique situation, and while we do not have the capacity to provide student housing this fall term for all second-year students we have taken steps to increase their likelihood of being offered housing. 

    For more information about the Vancouver campus, please visit the UBC Student Housing website.

    For more information about the Okanagan campus, please visit the UBCO Student Housing website.

  • What information is there to support international students?

    What information is there to support international students?

    International students are encouraged to visit the following websites for useful resources and updates:

  • Will student study spaces be available in September?

    Will student study spaces be available in September?

    Yes, study spaces, including informal study spaces, some library spaces, and other locations where students can find suitable space for silent and personal or quiet group studying, will be available.

  • What libraries are open on campus?

    What libraries are open on campus?

    Most UBC Library branches across both campuses are now open.

    For the most up-to-date information, please visit:

  • Will there be extracurricular activities such as orientation this fall?

    Will there be extracurricular activities such as orientation this fall?

    Yes. We are planning to have orientation programs available for new-to-UBC students. There will be other extracurricular activities planned for Winter Session, Term 1. The nature of the activity and whether the type of activities will be in-person or virtual (or a combination of the two) will be determined as we work with public health to ensure that all of our extracurricular activities have robust safety plans in place. Other non-academic activities will follow the BC Provincial Health Orders.

Research

Buildings

Getting to and from campus

Safety Planning

  • What is UBC’s approach to COVID-19 safety planning?

    What is UBC’s approach to COVID-19 safety planning?

    UBC has a COVID-19 Safety Planning Framework that aligns with the BC Restart plan and new COVID-19 Return-to-Campus Guidelines.  Seven institutional safety plans are being made available, to be applied to UBC learning, research and/or administrative spaces, until we shift to a more general communicable disease plan. By taking a standardized, institutional approach, individual Faculties and administrative units will not need to create new safety plans for their area, and will only need to follow the measures outlined in applicable institutional safety plan(s). This will ensure a consistent approach across the university, encompassing our campuses and other learning sites. 

    UBC, along with other sectors, will begin a transition period in how COVID-19 is managed in workplaces, and move towards communicable disease prevention.

    For further details please visit the site according to your campus: UBC Vancouver | UBC Okanagan.

  • Will the updated COVID-19 safety plans still require people to do self-assessments, stay home if they are sick, and wash their hands?

    Will the updated COVID-19 safety plans still require people to do self-assessments, stay home if they are sick, and wash their hands?

    Yes. Effective plans combine layers of protection to keep people safe, so it is highly likely that these controls will continue to be recommended for the fall. Strategies implemented need to meet the requirements set out by both Public Health and WorkSafeBC. These measures also help to reduce the risk of other transmissible diseases including influenza (the flu) and the common cold.

  • Will I need to do any specific COVID-19 safety training before I return to campus?

    Will I need to do any specific COVID-19 safety training before I return to campus?

    Yes. All employees are required to complete the new mandatory online COVID-19 safety training (UBC Vancouver UBC Okanagan) prior to resuming on-campus activities, or as soon as possible if they are already working on campus. There may also be a site-specific orientation required by your supervisor or department. Those returning to campus are also required to follow the COVID-19 Campus Rules.

  • Why do I need to complete this training?

    Why do I need to complete this training?

    This course is an important element of the on-campus work resumption process. It is designed to help UBC faculty, staff and student-staff work safely by following provincial health direction on reducing the risk of COVID-19 infection and transmission. 

  • I previously completed safety training due to being on campus. Do I still need to take this training?

    I previously completed safety training due to being on campus. Do I still need to take this training?

    It is mandatory to complete this training even if you previously completed safety training due to being on campus. 

    The training modules have been updated based on the latest public health guidance and provide an overview of the following: 

    • UBC’s Go Forward Plan and how it aligns with BC’s Restart plan
    • The new approach to UBC-wide COVID-19 safety planning
    • Planning for events and gatherings
    • Alignment with sector guidelines

    For further information visit UBC Vancouver I UBC Okanagan