Research Continuity

The University has approached reopening its laboratories, core facilities, and studios in a phased manner in accordance with key principles. Although conditions have steadily improved, the University may make changes to this guidance at short notice. Therefore, researchers are encouraged to check this page often and to sign up for the update mailing list here.

The University is operating in Phase 4 for research labs, studios, and core facilities.

In Phase 4, Notre Dame has returned to full research operations with few to no limitations. Lab directors, departments, or colleges are allowed to make more restrictive local protocols in consultation with the VPR.

ABOUT THIS PAGE

This page provides information on the University's response to the COVID-19 pandemic as it relates to research laboratories, studios, and core facilities. It is organized into the following key sections:

PHASE 4 GENERAL GUIDELINES

This information is provided to help answer questions researchers may have about laboratory and facility functions or the impact on ongoing or forthcoming research projects during the Phase 4 response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

  • Individuals should not come to campus for work if they have any symptoms of COVID-19.
  • All researchers who come to campus are required to adhere to the University's COVID-19 policies. For full guidance, please visit covid.nd.edu.

DENSITY & MASKS

  • There are no density or masking requirements in place for vaccinated employees in labs, studios, or core facilities. Masks are required indoors for those unvaccinated.  
  • Lab and core directors may impose mask and density requirements if they feel uncomfortable given the current state of infection in the region or if there are group members who are vulnerable or uncomfortable.
  • Individuals working within small and poorly ventilated shared offices for a significant amount of time are encouraged to work with their supervisors to develop a plan to either work remotely or vary their schedules in order to minimize possible exposure.

VACCINATIONS & TESTING

  • All students, staff, and faculty are required to be vaccinated unless an exemption was approved.
  • Individuals with an exception to the vaccination mandate must complete surveillance testing every week.
  • Asymptomatic testing is also available for faculty and staff traveling for University business purposes. Documentation may be requested.
  • All members of the Notre Dame community who have a high fever, difficulty breathing, loss of taste or smell, or feel ill more generally (e.g., persistent headache, body aches, sore throat, or fatigue) are encouraged to promptly seek a symptomatic COVID test at the Joyce Center or at an external test provider.
    • Symptomatic testing center hours at the Joyce Center are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, by appointment only.
    • Faculty and staff can schedule a symptomatic test by contacting the Notre Dame Wellness Center at 574-631-0050.

IU SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

  • Faculty, staff, and students working in the IU School of Medicine buildings south of campus, Harper Hall and Raclin Carmichael Hall, must follow these guidelines: 
    • All building occupants, regardless of institutional affiliation, must wear a mask in common spaces. The common spaces include hallways, restrooms, break rooms, shared research spaces, etc.
    • Notre Dame personnel in Notre Dame only spaces are not required to wear a mask if they are vaccinated. Unvaccinated individuals must continue to wear a mask.
    • IUSM personnel are still required to wear masks, per the IU guidelines
    • In research spaces where there is shared usage (e.g. tissue culture rooms or core facilities), appropriate face coverings must be worn. If more than 3 feet of distance cannot be maintained in these shared spaces, Notre Dame personnel must wear surgical masks.

ADDITIONAL SPECIFIC INFORMATION

Additional guidance and information that relate to conducting research can be found below.

FORMS & POLICIES

Relevant forms and policies can be found below.

RESEARCH TRAVEL 

Domestic travel for research purposes is permitted with no current restrictions. International travel is allowed with the permission of a Dean or Vice President and must be registered with Notre Dame International.

Before scheduling travel, please review the University’s Travel Policy.

VISITORS TO THE ACADEMY AND GROUP GATHERINGS

Research-related visits and gatherings are currently allowed. This can include individual visitors, such as faculty and students from another university or service personnel, or visitors who come to Notre Dame for an event, such as a seminar or workshop.

Visitors to campus, regardless of vaccination status, are expected to wear masks inside campus buildings (except when eating and drinking). Minors can participate in campus-based activities with a mask on. Masks are not required outdoors on campus.

Please review the University's Visitor PolicyGathering Policy, and Community Engagement Policy when planning for visitors or groups on-campus.

Report a Reopening of Research Concern

REPORT A RESEARCH CONCERN

The above form can be submitted anonymously if preferred. All feedback is reviewed and addressed by the Research Ombudsperson for Reopening, Melanie DeFord

Need More Information?

For the latest information regarding the University’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit covid.nd.edu.

Announcements of research reopening updates are emailed to a lab reopening Google Group mailing list. To opt-in to this mailing list, please subscribe here. Your ND email address must be used in order to opt-in. 

For additional guidance, please communicate with your Department Chair or, if needed, a relevant member of the Subtask Force on Research Laboratory Operations. Members include Jim BrockmoleSteve CorcelliMelanie DeFord, and Mark McCready.

If you are unsure who to contact, please email research@nd.edu and your query will be forward, as appropriate.