Last updated March 26, 2021

Spring 2021

  • Residence Halls will open at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 23, 2021. Early arrival is available starting January 18 for $35.00/day.
  • Fall 2020 students will return to their same room for Spring 2021.
  • New and transfer students may apply for Spring 2021 beginning Wednesday, October 28, 2020.
  • Any student who canceled their housing for Fall 2020 (and is currently enrolled) will receive the opportunity to reapply on October 28 and return in January 2021.
  • Assignments will be made for new applicants on a first-come, first-served based on room type preferences (not building).
  • Roommates may be requested by new applicants, but not guaranteed. Roommate matching is not available during the spring application process.
  • The deadline for roommate and room preferences is December 16, 2020.
  • Assignments will be emailed to new students in late December with contracts binding in early January.
  • If you are joining us on campus for Spring 2021, please apply here.

Spring 2021 Check-In Procedure

  • Students should login to their housing application portal, select 'Spring 2021 Move In' and indicate their anticipated arrival date.
  • Residents can access the building using their Iowa OneCard. If they have lost keys or ID, please visit the hall desk for temporary access.
  • Carts will be available for check out.
  • Masks must be worn by all entering the building.
  • Residents are limited to 1 guest to assist with move-in.
  • Please monitor your vehicle and only park in permitted areas.

Housing Contracts, Refunds, and Cancellations

  • Housing contracts are written as a full academic year contract covering two semesters (Fall 2020 and Spring 2021). The contract does not cover semester break periods (winter break), but fall break (Thanksgiving) and spring break are included in the housing contract.
  • Requests for a contract release should be submitted online in the housing application portal. Required supporting documentation may be uploaded, as well.

You may be released from your housing contract without financial penalty based on the criteria below. Your request for release should be submitted online in the housing application with documentation.

Criteria includes:

  • You are not attending the University due to graduation, withdrawal, transfer, academic dismissal.
  • You are married and living with your spouse in the community (marriage certificate required for verification).
  • You will be participating in an academically-sponsored study abroad, co-op, student teaching, or internship program outside of the Iowa City area (acceptance verification required).
  • You are called to duty for active military service (military orders required for verification).
  • You cancel prior to your contract binding date.

Please note: If you cancel your housing contract because you are not attending the University, and then re-enroll in classes during the contract term, you will be financially responsible for your housing contract.

  • Contract releases will also be granted for students registered for all online coursework during Spring 2021 who will be residing at home. These releases will be approved once they are verified after the early registration period, November 30 - December 11.
  • Spring 2021 contract releases will not be granted for students that wish to move off campus into a private apartment.
  • Students requesting a release for Spring 2021 must completely move out and check out by noon on December 19, 2020.
  • Contract releases may be requested online in the housing application portal.

Showing Symptoms

Not feeling well or think you may have COVID-19? Follow these instructions

If you live on campus in a residence hall, self-reporting your status will initiate the process for arranging your isolation/quarantine space. Please self-isolate, wear a face mask, and order your meals online until a member of the Housing and Dining team contacts you to discuss your relocation needs and next steps. Please note that self-report forms submitted after 6:00 p.m.on weekdays and 4:00 p.m. on weekends will be followed up the next day. Until you are contacted by Housing & Dining, maintain your self-isolation, with a face mask on. You can order meals online for pickup from dining. Stay away from others as much as you can while traveling through the building.

Residence Hall Cleaning Protocols 

All university buildings will be cleaned following CDC guidelines for cleaning. Daily disinfection and sanitization protocols have been enhanced in response to COVID-19, such as: 

  • During move in, cart disinfection occurred between each use.  
  • Over the summer, each residence hall room was deep cleaned. Each student room surface was cleaned and sanitized, with all touchpoints disinfected. All public spaces were cleaned and sanitized with touchpoints being disinfected.  
  • Restroom service procedures such as cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfection have been updated.
  • Common touchpoints are cleaned and disinfected daily including elevator buttons, handrails, doorknobs, mailbox doors, tables tops, etc. 
  • We have applied a bioprotectant to our spaces prior to student arrival. The product is a bacterial and viral inhibitor that reduces bacteria and viruses on surfaces for up to 90 days. After 90 days the product will be reapplied to residence halls public surfaces such as, elevator buttons, handrails, doorknobs, mailbox doors, tables tops, etc. 
  • Custodial and Maintenance staff are required to wear masks or face shields whenever they are in public spaces or on student floors. 
  • We are using an enhanced check-in protocol for staff that include taking staff temperatures before the start of the work shift, monitoring for symptoms, etc.
  • Public spaces, public restrooms, and entries are cleaned on a daily basis.
  • Trash removal from the grounds surrounding the residence halls occurs daily.  
  • Restrooms located on a community floor will have a cleaning scheduled posted outside of the space so students can plan accordingly.  
  • Once a student moves in, the student will be responsible for cleaning and sanitizing their residence hall room. University Housing and Dining will not be responsible for cleaning and sanitizing occupied residence hall rooms and the corresponding doors and doorknobs/handles on a regular basis.  
  • UH&D  staff are trained and follow the highest standard guidelines established by the professional organization for institutional facilities professionals (APPA).  UH&D Custodial Services has three certified trainers that hold ISSA Custodial Technician credentials. They are trained in both basic and advanced methods.  In addition, a member of the Custodial team has completed the Fundamentals Training Course with an emphasis on SARS-CoV-2/COVID 19 through GBAC, Global Biorisk Advisory Council (A division of ISSA), which was used in determining procedures and frequencies moving into fall.  

Emergency Drills and Work Orders

  • Students will be notified of any scheduled drills and should remain in the room.
  • In the event of an actual emergency, the student should vacate the space.
  • Work orders can be requested through our online system or through the residence hall front desk via phone.
  • Students will need to wear a mask and may be asked to step out of the room while a repair is being made.

Residence Hall Policies

In accordance with University of Iowa guidance and aligned with the Code of Student Life, the following expectations will be enforced in university residence halls: 

  • All residents are expected to cover their mouth and nose with a face mask while in any/all residence halls building community spaces, and when entering or leaving a residence hall. Building community space is considered any space that is not their own room.  
  • Face masks are expected for any/all individuals in the residence halls. 
  • Face masks (cloth mask, disposable mask, or face shield with mask) are required indoors in all university buildings at all times, except when actively eating or drinking. Individuals can remove masks only in private spaces assigned to them, such as a residence hall room, office, or an individually reserved study space. Individuals in violation of this policy may be subject to progressive disciplinary action. 
    • Effective Friday Oct. 23, 2020, the university will no longer allow gaiters or face shields (when worn without a mask) as appropriate face coverings.
  • For further instruction on how to wear a face covering, please see the following resources provided by the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics
  • While in building public spaces, all residents and guests are expected to follow social distancing guidelines of maintaining at least six feet of separation from others in the Residence Halls, where possible.  
  • All residents are expected to follow elevator capacity requirements. Individuals in violation of this policy may be subject to progressive disciplinary action. Building community space is considered any space that is not their own room.  
  • Residents are permitted only one guest at a time and must always escort their guest in the building. Guests must follow face covering (cloth mask, disposable mask, or face shield with mask) are expectations in all building community spaces, and when entering or leaving a residence hall. Building community space is considered any space that is not their own room.  
    • Single room occupants are permitted one guest. 
    • Double room occupants, each resident of the space is permitted one guest. If both roommates agree, guests can be present in the room at the same time. If a resident does not want to host guests, roommates must follow expectations set in their roommate agreement.  
    • If a guest is found in violation of this policy, they may be asked to leave the Residence Hall and their host may be subject to progressive disciplinary action.  
  • All furniture has been adjusted due to social distancing guidelines and should not be moved. Any furniture movement may be considered a policy violation and subject to progressive discipline. 

Resident Experience (Floor Meetings, Living Learning Communities)

  • All RA floor meetings will be held virtually. There may be some opportunities for in-person attendance, but all meetings will have a virtual option.   
  • At this time, all Living Learning Community events will be held virtually. 

Quarantine and Isolation Processes in the Residence Halls

  • When a student comes into contact with another individual who has COVID-19 or tests positive for the virus the following processes will be implemented. Please note the following definitions below: 
  • Quarantine: Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been  exposed  to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if a person is infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department. (Source: CDC ) 
  • Self-isolation: Isolation is used to separate people infected with the virus (those who are sick with COVID-19 and those with no symptoms) from people who are not infected. People who are in isolation should stay home until  it’s safe for them to be around others. In the home, anyone sick or infected should separate themselves from others by staying in a specific “sick room,” or area and using a separate bathroom (if available). (Source: CDC
  • Students who need to quarantine (meaning they have been exposed to another individual who has the virus), will need to report this via an online link. This is then sent as a notification to the University Housing and Dining staff. A member of the staff team will follow up with that student asking various questions testing status, if the student wants alternative housing, timeframe for relocation, transportation options, and next steps. Students who need to quarantine in a separate room will also be sent an email upon reassignment and be temporarily relocated for up to 14 days. A student’s roommate will continue to be present and live in the original room and should monitor for symptoms. 
  • Students who need to isolate (meaning they have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus), will need to report this via an online link. This is then sent as a notification to the University Housing and Dining staff. A member of the staff team will follow up with that student asking various questions testing status, if the student wants alternative housing, timeframe for relocation, transportation options, and next steps. Students will be temporarily relocated to live in a community with others who have tested positive for the virus.  
  • Students who test positive will be monitored as medically necessary. Medical care will be provided virtually by Student Health or the provider who made the original diagnosis. Students who are seen at Student Health will have follow up from the clinic and be able to contact Student Health for follow up and updates. We encourage students to contact their healthcare provider if issues or concerns arise. The anticipated length of stay is roughly 10 days. 
  • Quarantine and isolation floors will not have a designated resident assistant (RA) living in the community.
  • When possible, floor access will be restricted only to residents in isolation housing. 
  • Students in quarantine or isolation will have meals delivered. An online ordering website will be provided when a student is temporarily reassigned. 

Expectations for Students in Short Term Stay Housing (Isolation and Quarantine) 

During your time in short term stay housing, University Housing and Dining staff will be in communication with you to offer support and resources. If you have questions or need additional support please contact the residence hall desk to be connected with the staff on duty. The following expectations should be followed by students in short term stay housing:

Room Assignment, Visitors, and Masks

  • Students will remain in their assigned room and only leave to use the restroom, to attend a health appointment, or in the event of an emergency.
  • Masks should be worn at any time outside of the room.
  • Visitors will not be permitted in short term housing.

Symptom Monitoring

  • Students should assist in monitoring their symptoms and contact the Student Health Nurseline at 319-335-9704 with any questions or concerns.

Room Items, Packages, Mail, and Food Delivery

  • Essential items left in the original room may be delivered to the residence hall desk if in a bag (e.g. medications, textbooks, and phone/ computer charger).
  • All other packages will be held at your original hall.
  • If you need medicine or shelf-stable groceries, our residence hall staff will work to deliver those items. Items can be sent to attention to:
    • Name
    • 100 [Building Name], Room #
    • c/o Isolation/Quarantine
    • Iowa City, IA 52242.
    • Please note that we cannot receive items that need to be refrigerated as staff will deliver items with your University Catering meals from 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. and 5:00-6:00 p.m.
  • Staff will not deliver food from restaurants. Additionally, delivery drivers are not allowed access to spaces within the residence halls.

Garbage and Linens

  • Garbage should be bagged and placed outside the room by 9:00 a.m. to be picked up. Please use the trash bag liners, not the carryout bags.
  • New linens may be requested by emailing
    • If linens are needed in the middle of the night, contact the hall desk.
    • Soiled linens should be placed in a trash can liner and keep in the room.

Emergency Drills and Work Orders

  • Students will be notified of any scheduled drills and should remain in the room.
  • In the event of an actual emergency, the student should vacate the space.
  • Work orders must be requested through the residence hall front desk via phone.
    • Students will need to wear a mask and may be asked to step out of the room while the repair is being made.

Housing and Dining Communication and Contacts

  • You will receive communication from various University staff to your university email. These staff members include residence hall staff or embedded therapists.
  • If you have additional questions, please reach out to your residence hall front desk.
  • If your plans change and you are no longer in need of short term stay housing, please send an email to and include your name and ID number. Additionally, if you need to adjust your checkout date based on updated information from your medical professional, please let us know.
  • During your time in short term stay housing, University Housing and Dining staff will be in communication with you to offer support and resources. If you have questions or need additional support please contact the residence hall desk to be connected with the staff on duty.

What to Pack for Short Term Stay Housing 

  • The following items are provided by University Housing and Dining: 1 pillow, 1 set of sheets, 1 bedspread, 2 towels, 2 washcloths, a microwave and a refrigerator or MicroChill unit, a trash can and liners. Meals will be delivered with disposable cutlery on a daily basis when ordered. As a reminder, students must be able to carry everything that they bring to short term stay housing. 
  • Items to pack:  
    • Clothing for a 14-day period 
    • Toiletries – soap, shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush and toothpaste, shaving items, menstrual care products, styling products, etc.  
    • Masks and thermometer 
    • Over-the-counter medications – acetaminophen/ibuprofen, decongestant 
    • Tissues 
    • Prescribed medications 
    • Bathrobe, shower shoes, caddy 
    • Electronics 
    • Computer and charger 
    • Phone and charger 
    • Webcam 
    • Headphones 
    • Academics 
    • Textbooks 

Resources for Students in Short Term Stay Housing 

The following resources are available to students in short term stay housing: Student HealthEmbedded TherapistsResidence Hall staff, and the Dean of Students office. 

Laundry in Short Term Stay Housing

Instructions on laundry can be found here.

Meals for Short Term Stay Housing

Meals will be provided to you in short term stay housing. You will be emailed a link in which you can order your meals online. Please note that this link (and meal options) will be different from the online ordering (Grubhub) system. Your meal will include one beverage, two snacks, and one entrée (with sides). Bottles of water will accompany your meal. If you have dietary accommodations you will be able to include that in your order. Please note the following:

  • Orders will close at 12:00 p.m. (noon) for the following day’s lunch, dinner, and breakfast. We encourage you to place meal orders at least a day in advance if possible.
  • The entrée and sides will arrive cold for food safety purposes and will require warming when you are ready to eat. Heating instructions will be included.
  • Your meal will be delivered to your residence hall room door. Your order will include a receipt with your name, phone number, and room number.
  • Lunch will be delivered from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (noon) and dinner and breakfast will be delivered from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
  • If you miss a meal deadline, please reach out to staff to discuss options.
  • If you have any questions or dietary concerns, please contact us via email: or phone: 319-335-3116.

No. University Housing and Dining will not notify students regarding the health status, testing, or treatment of other students or staff members. In the event of a presumptive positive or positive test for a communicable disease or infection such as COVID-19, students are expected to adhere to instructions from Student Health or their personal healthcare provider regarding treatment and/or quarantine in order to minimize exposure to the rest of the community.  

Yes, we will encourage those who spend time with their roommates and are informed that their roommate has had a positive test, to quarantine due to exposure to the virus. The Student Health Nurseline is available to answer questions regarding this process and the availability of testing. 

Rooms will be set aside for emergency use, such as for illness, student interaction concerns, or other matters, per protocol. Floors have been designated in several halls for students to isolate in event they test positive for COVID-19.

University Housing and Dining uses a variety of air ventilation systems throughout our facilities. This year our team is taking the following measures: 

  •  Verifying that all our HVAC systems are functioning properly (with continued monitoring throughout the academic year). 
  •  Installing a higher level of filtration in areas that use a greater amount of recycled room air. 
  •  Increasing the number of air exchanges and the use of outside air as much as possible. 

As we prepare to return to campus, some students and families have asked if the University of Iowa will require students to be tested for COVID-19 before moving into the residence halls. We recognize this may provide some comfort for families, but it is not recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the following reasons: 

  • One-time testing only provides data for a specific point in time and can miss cases in the early stages of infection, giving students a false sense of security. 
  • One-time testing requires significant resources, including trained staff to conduct the tests, personal protective equipment, and physical space for conducting testing safely and ensuring privacy. 

Poorly administered mass testing can result in damaged or inconclusive results and excessive false negatives. For this reason, the university is focusing its resources on CDC recommended infection prevention measures including: 

  • Reducing campus density 
  • Modifying classrooms and facilities to promote social distancing 
  • Providing and mandating cloth face coverings 
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfection 

Yes. The UI is prepared to test symptomatic individuals and asymptomatic individuals with a known COVID-19 exposure in coordination with Johnson County Public Health. The UI will only administer tests approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

A student who believes they have been exposed to the virus or is experiencing symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) should call or email the Student Health Nurseline ( 

The university will proactively engage with students throughout the semester to gauge their health and well-being and provide resources to support both their physical and mental health. 

The University of Iowa is committed to providing a world-class educational experience for our students and a great place to grow and thrive for faculty and staff.  As a guiding principle, the UI recognizes the more an individual interacts with others, and the longer the interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. The university is working to develop and disseminate policies and processes for returning employees and students to campus with the goals of limiting exposure to and slowing the spread of COVID-19. 

The university will continue to follow the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)and the  Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), in consultation with UI experts.   

Density, Social Distancing, and Masks

  • Residence hall policy on masks will mirror campus policy on masks.  Unless otherwise indicated, applicable face coverings (cloth covering, disposable or cloth mask, face shield) must be worn by all building occupants unless they are alone in a private office/space. 
  • Each residence hall student will receive a Healthy Hawkeye Welcome Kit, which will include two masks and a digital thermometer, along with several other items in a clear bag.  

Residence Hall Spaces and Digital Signage (Tabling, Table Tents, Room Reservations, and Digital Signage) 

  • University Housing and Dining will not be accepting requests to host tables in the residence halls during the 2020-2021 academic year. No tabling reservations in Burge, Catlett, Hillcrest, and Mayflower will be allowed during this time. 
  • University Housing and Dining will not be accepting table tents during the 2020-2021 academic year. No table tents will be displayed (or allowed) in the residence hall market places during this time. 
  • University Housing and Dining’s External Room Reservation System will be offline during the 2020-2021 academic year. Any university office, non-residence hall student group, department, or professional unit that is not part of University Housing and Dining or the Division of Student Life, will be unable to reserve public space in the residence halls during this time. 
  • University Housing and Dining’s internal Room Reservation System will only be available for use by University Housing and Dining and professional units within the Division of Student Life. In-person events will be limited to 50 (or less) attendees per the adjusted room capacities. Meeting rooms and large programming spaces have been re-designed to allow for social distancing. No room set changes will be allowed. No groups external to UH&D and to the Division of Student Life will be able to reserve internal space. Please note: some rooms will be permanently offline for 2020-2021 due to space demands and limitations. 
  • University Housing and Dining will be accepting digital display submissions for the 2020-2021 academic year. However, given the extremely complex experience of living on campus, approval will only be granted to signage that contains relevant information for students and/or staff.