As outlined in our Covid Campus Pledge, all campus users need to make sure they follow the prevailing national guidance and local requirements in place to support the fight against Covid-19.

For the Health and Safety of everyone on Campus, or on any University controlled building anywhere in Scotland, you will be expected to adhere to the following Guidelines. For those at our Qatar campus, separate local information will be provided in line with Qatar’s National Guidance.

These are subject to regular review and update in line with changing guidance. If you have any questions about these Guidelines, or how Covid-19 impacts the University, please email


Last updated: 29 September 2020 (Version 3)

Changes since Version 2 include:

  • Additional information on the importance of fire doors
  • New online reporting process for self-isolation
  • Details of Covid Building Coordinators

Before Travelling to Campus | Moving Around Campus | Hygiene and Cleaning | Eating and Drinking | Fire | First Aid | Other | Exceptions

Before Travelling to Campus

  • Do not leave your home if you have any symptoms which could indicate you may have Covid-19 (these include a high temperature or fever; a new continuous cough; or a new loss or change in taste or smell.)
  • If you believe you have symptoms you should immediately begin to self-isolate for a period of 10 days; book a test with the NHS; and report your self-isolation to the University using our online form. Once tested you should follow the directions of NHS staff and, if you receive a positive test, update the University using the online form so we can provide you with support.
  • If someone in your household has symptoms, you should immediately begin to self-isolate for a period of 14 days; book a test with the NHS; and report your self-isolation to the University using our online form.
  • You should only travel to campus if you are symptom free and you need to do so. You shouldn’t bring any unauthorised visitors with you.
  • Try to avoid public transport where this is possible and walk or cycle where you can.
  • Remember to take your face covering with you when you leave your property.

You can collect two reusable face coverings and a thermometer testing strip by showing your ID card when you first come to campus. These are available from Polwarth Reception (0800-1500) and Elphinstone Hall (1000-1400), Monday-Friday. If you are exempt, you can collect a Sunflower lanyard in place of face coverings to show this. Please only wear these if you are exempt from wearing a face covering.

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Moving Around Campus and Physical Distancing

  • Students should only access a building for a timetabled teaching event or when they have booked a study space. At the end of the session students should leave the building promptly.
  • Please don’t arrive early for teaching sessions or booked study time and avoid socialising in corridors and enclosed communal spaces.
  • Staff may use their office on days in which they have on-campus teaching sessions.
  • You should put your face covering on before you enter any building on campus (unless you are exempt).
  • Wear your face covering whenever you are inside unless signage explicitly tells you otherwise or you are in a single occupancy office.
  • Teaching sessions will end 10 minutes to the hour to ensure the room can be cleaned by its users and vacated by 5 minutes to the hour. This will help ensure contact between classes entering and exiting the space is minimised.
  • Do not remain in communal areas any longer than necessary.
  • Stay at least 2 metres away from others wherever you can, including when queuing to enter, or you are exiting, a teaching session.
  • In corridors, keep to the left and strictly observe any one-way systems.
  • Look out for signage across campus and in each building and follow direction. This will include details of circulation routes and, within rooms, maximum occupancy numbers.
  • Sit only where indicated, to ensure safe distancing and do not move or change your seat during the class.
  • Do not rearrange furniture - it is laid out to maintain strict physical distancing requirements.
  • Students should not swap any assigned teaching groups or look to join a group you are not a member of. You will be asked to leave a class if you turn up and are not expected to be in it.
  • Do not use lifts unless you need to do so (e.g. to move heavy items or for disabled access) and follow the maximum occupancy details signposted at each lift if you do.

Remember that not all members of the University community will be able to wear a face covering due to a health condition or disability. You may see them wearing, or showing a card, with a Sunflower logo on it to indicate this fact. More details on the logo can be found at Hidden Disabilities.

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Hygiene and Cleaning

  • Wash your hands regularly, with soap and water, for a minimum of 20 seconds. This is especially important before putting on your face covering, eating, drinking, smoking or vaping.
  • Remember to avoid touching your face.
  • Use the hand sanitiser on entry and exit of buildings and rooms - dispensers have been placed across all our facilities and buildings.
  • Cleaning materials/wipes will be provided for staff and students to clean down their main touchpoints when you enter a room (such as desks and chairs).
  • You may also be asked to clean other shared equipment before and after you use it.
  • Remember not to share personal items or face coverings with anyone.

Each building is cleaned out of hours and cleaners will be performing regular “touch point” cleaning throughout the day in high traffic areas.

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Eating and Drinking

  • Catering on campus will be limited both in terms of choice and opening times. We will keep up to date details of which locations are open on the website.
  • Do not eat inside buildings, except in places designated for the purpose (i.e. marked seating areas).
  • Consider bringing you own food and drinks to campus with you (Note: some water dispensers will not be available).

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Emergencies - Fire

  • If you are unable to evacuate from any location you are required to be in, without assistance, inform your line-manager or Student Support immediately to make suitable arrangements to ensure your safety.
  • If the fire alarm sounds, other than for the weekly test, evacuate via the nearest exit, following the green fire exit signs as usual. (You can use any staircases, including any signed as “up only”).
  • If you are taking part in on-campus learning, Tutors/Leaders will leave the room last so they can confirm that everyone has left and should close the door behind them.
  • Try to maintain 2 meters from others if possible, unless you are at immediate risk from smoke or flames.
  • Fire doors must not be held open, with hooks, wedges or other objects, in order to improve ventilation.  This would be a breach of fire safety legislation and would be a serious risk in the event of a fire and smoke.  All fire doors should have a door closer and only those released automatically upon activation of the fire alarm are permitted to be held open. 
  • Go to the assembly point and continue to maintain 2m physical distancing when you get there.
  • Let a Fire Marshal or member of staff know if you believe anyone is missing or is unable to evacuate.
  • Do not re-enter the building until told it is safe to do so by a member of staff.

There will be no planned drills during the first semester so please assume it is real.

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Emergencies – First Aid

  • If someone is injured and you need assistance, use the SafeZone App to contact security for a first aider.
  • In an emergency, you can continue to call 999 for an ambulance, if required, and then inform security that you have done so. You can alert them using the SafeZone App.

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  • To enable us to work with Public Health Scotland and facilitate the operation of their “Test and Protect” system you may be asked to:
    • show your ID card to a member of staff;
    • complete a sign in when entering a location;
    • make use of specific mobile phone apps or technology;
    • undertake additional measures that we agree to support Test and protect.
  • Additional, or different, rules may apply in halls of residence which will be communicated to those staying with us by email and signage within your flat buildings.
  • These rules may be updated or changed if there is a local outbreak or Scottish Government guidance changes, so please keep yourself informed of changes by visiting the Coronavirus webpages and checking your University email account regularly.
  • Covid Building Coordinators are in place to support the return to campus and use of our buildings. If you are coming to campus for the first time since the changes were implemented for Covid-19, get in touch with them for more information on what to expect. Details of our team of CBCs is available online.
  • It is expected that all members of the University community will follow these rules. Deliberate or repeated failure to comply with these rules, or any requirement directed under national Health & Safety guidance, may be investigated under the appropriate disciplinary process for staff or students.

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Specialist Teaching and exceptions to the “2 metre rule”

Where an activity is not possible without getting closer than 2m away from another person that activity will either:

  • Not be allowed and must be postponed until later in the course;
  • Be carried out in an alternative way (e.g. by demonstration or simulation); or
  • Be carried out with additional precautions in place (e.g. the use of “Perspex” screens; mandatory personal protective equipment etc.). All such cases will be subject of a separate risk assessment.

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