Olin Health & Safety

New info on the WashU COVID testing process

On August 31, Dean Taylor shared several updates related to the university’s plans for COVID-19 testing. One of these updates offered new guidance for graduate and professional students, who will now be required to complete a university-provided COVID test if they work, teach, conduct research or take classes on the Danforth Campus. Please find additional information related to this requirement, including testing dates and registration, testing logistics, and exemptions, below.

Please note: This testing is not for students displaying symptoms. If you have or develop COVID-19-related symptoms, contact Habif Health and Wellness Center immediately (314-935-6666). The university is providing testing for all WashU students, faculty and staff who develop COVID-19 related symptoms at any time during the fall semester upon referral from Habif (students) or Occupational Health (faculty and staff).  

Testing dates and registration

The start-of-semester testing for graduate and professional students will take place September 21–25, 2020. Students are required to register for an appointment at the West Campus testing center. To register for an appointment, visit recstore.wustl.edu, login with your WUSTL key, select COVID-19 Surveillance Testing Scheduling and then select “Entry COVID test: Grad/Prof students.” Appointments are available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the dates listed above.

Testing logistics

  • Start-of-semester testing will be conducted at the West Campus Conference Center (7425 Forsyth Blvd., Clayton, Missouri, 63105).
  • Bring a form of identification and smartphone/tablet/laptop to check in at the site.
  • This is a saliva test. Do not eat or drink ANYTHING for 30 minutes prior to your test time. This includes, but is not limited to, tooth brushing, mouth washing, gum chewing, drinking water and tobacco use before your testing. Not following preparation guidelines will result in a delay of your testing.
  • Testing will close promptly at 4 p.m.
  • The processing time for tests is approximately 24–36 hours.
  • Negative results will be emailed directly to your university email account. Positive results will be communicated directly to Habif medical staff, who will then contact you by phone to provide appropriate medical and healthcare support, and to begin contact tracing protocols.
  • The testing center was designed and is being operated with the health and safety of the university community in mind. This includes consultation with expert advisors from the School of Medicine’s Division of Infectious Diseases. As noted above, this testing is not for symptomatic students. Additionally, masks will be required (except when producing a sample) and the site is designed to allow for physical distancing at all times except very brief interactions with testing staff.
  • Students who test positive will be offered the opportunity to move to isolation housing on campus to recover away from other students. There will be no cost for this isolation housing or the meals provided when a student is in isolation housing. Students testing positive who live off-campus with roommates and are living in a situation where they cannot safely isolate from others will be required to move to isolation housing. 

Getting to West Campus

West Campus is about 1 mile west of the Danforth Campus. There are multiple ways to get there:

  • From the Danforth Campus (starting at Big Bend and Forsyth), walk west along Forsyth toward downtown Clayton. West Campus will be on your right.
  • The West Campus shuttle stops on the Danforth Campus at Mallinckrodt Center and Goldfarb Hall.
  • Parking for students being tested is available at West Campus.
  • Students can also take the MetroLink Blue Line and get off at the Forsyth station.


Students are exempt from testing if they are studying remotely and not living in the St. Louis region. Students who have previously tested positive, and those who live in the St. Louis region but will not be coming to campus, may be exempt from the mandatory surveillance testing. More information about requesting an exemption under either of these conditions is available on the university’s COVID-19 website.

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