Safety: rules, restrictions and guidance

To keep our community safe, we all have a role to play. It is our social responsibility to help stop the spread of Covid-19.


Government guidelines

At all times, please continue to follow the latest government guidelines on coronavirus.

On campus

  • Wear a face covering in teaching spaces, meeting rooms and around campus unless exempt for a medical reason or disability. While supplies last, we will be offering free face coverings from most reception desks in campus buildings, for those who need them.
  • Keep a safe distance from others and follow campus signage.
  • Wash your hands often throughout the day and make use of hand washing facilities and sanitisers on campus.
  • Allow plenty of time to make it to any scheduled teaching.

Download the NHS Covid-19 app 

The NHS Covid-19 app is now available. The app has a number of tools to protect you, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in.

Please download the app and scan the QR codes when visiting any of our pubs, bars, restaurants, cafés, gyms and libraries. 

Please note that as well as downloading the app and scanning the QR codes, you should still let the University know as soon as possible if you develop symptoms or if you have a confirmed positive test, so that we can identify and alert close contacts on campus. 

You may receive a 'potential exposure' alert from the app if it identifies possible contact with a confirmed coronavirus case. Receiving this alert does not mean you need to self-isolate - if you are required to self-isolate you will receive a specific notification advising you to do so.

Download the NHS app for free 

At home

New national restrictions

New national restrictions are now in place. This means you must stay at home except for specific reasons, including:

  • to buy essentials, including food
  • education
  • exercise
  • medical reasons.

You must not meet socially indoors with family or friends unless they are part of your household. Your household includes anyone you share a kitchen or bathroom with.

You can continue to meet one person you do not live with in an outdoor space, as long as you remain socially distant.

Government guidelines: New national restrictions

Social distancing

In shared spaces with people from outside your household, including corridors outside of a flat, you should practise social distancing.

NHS Test and Trace

If you are told by NHS Test and Trace that you've been in contact with a person who has coronavirus, you must self-isolate for 14 days.

If you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace but you are not displaying symptoms, other people in your household do not need to isolate – but you must avoid close contact with them.

If you are unwell

Do not return to your non-term time address if you are unwell.

What to do if someone in your household has a possible or confirmed case of Covid-19

In the community

  • Practise social distancing with people who you do not live with.
  • Walk, cycle or travel by car if you can.
  • Wear a face covering on public transport, in shops and supermarkets (unless exempt for a medical reason or disability).
  • Recognise others may be shielding or vulnerable and may not be able to wear coverings.

Students: Respect our code of conduct. Where necessary, the University will take action, including potential disciplinary action to protect the city-wide and University communities.

If someone in your household has a possible or confirmed case of Covid-19

If someone in your household displays symptoms, or receives a positive test result for Covid-19, all other members of your household should stay at home for 14 days (whether they have symptoms or not).

The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the household became ill or – if they do not have symptoms – from the day their test was taken.

Inform the University if you are self-isolating for this reason.

If you have received a negative test result at our Covid-19 Testing Centre

If you live with someone who tests positive, or you're identified as a close contact of someone who tests positive, you may still leave Sheffield if you have received a negative test result at our Covid-19 Testing Centre. You must self-isolate for 14 days at your new residence. You should travel by private car wherever possible, with people from your current household, or your new household (your household includes people you share a kitchen or bathroom with). If you test positive or develop any Covid-19 symptoms, do not travel. 

Students: complete the online Covid-19 form

You must complete the form when you begin self-isolating, even if you have no symptoms. (For example, if you have been identified as a contact and asked to self-isolate by NHS track and trace or if someone in your household has symptoms and is awaiting test results.) If you develop symptoms while self-isolating, please complete the form again.

Staff: notify your line manager as soon as possible.

Full step-by-step guidance for individuals, line managers and faculties/departments can be found on our managing a suspected or confirmed case of Covid-19 protocol.

Our Covid-19 Testing Centre

We have worked closely with public health experts to open a Covid-19 rapid testing facility for our students. The test centre is available on a voluntary basis if you're a University of Sheffield student living in Sheffield with no Covid-19 symptoms. 

Support – get in touch

Our extensive range of support services for students and staff are all available online.