Division of Research and Innovation Coronavirus Updates & Information

Last updated 5/11/21

DRI is working closely with SDSU Student Health Services, the SDSU Research Foundation, Environmental Health and Safety and other university units to monitor and respond to coronavirus (COVID-19) developments and provide appropriate guidance as related to research endeavors.

Visit SDSU’s central coronavirus website, which is the central repository for information and updates related to SDSU’s preparedness, guidance and decisions related to COVID-19. 

  • All in-person research, scholarship, community service, and creative activities that is done in-person at SDSU, SDSURF, or field sites must be evaluated and the projects approved prior to initiating any of these activities.
  • All personnel, including faculty, staff, and students, must be approved prior to initiating in-person activities.
  • Information specific to researchers and students is provided below. Please post COVID-19 related research questions to .


Ongoing COVID-19 safety precautions:

  • All  projects must be approved and all personnel working on an approved project must be approved prior to beginning in-person activities.

  • All personnel must be screened for COVID-19 symptoms prior to attending work each day.

  • All students must be tested for COVID-19 every 14 days. Research Leaders must check for university clearance on Webportal prior to each work shift. Although not required for employees who are not students, we encourage all personnel to be tested every other week at a free, County testing Center.

  • Any positive COVID-19 incidents must be reported to the university using the Case Reporting Form . If the individual is an SDSU Research Foundation employee, they must also inform their HR business partner and report using the SDSURF Case Reporting Form. Infected individuals must immediately stop participating in research and remain home.

The SDSU Research Continuity plan is continuously reevaluated and modified based upon the public health status of both the SDSU and regional communities; availability of COVID-19 vaccines for university faculty, staff, and students; and guidance from San Diego County Health & Human Services. 

Given the recent improvements in our region, required COVID-19 testing of students, and the increasing availability of vaccines for vulnerable individuals, DRI has modified protocols for in-person research, scholarship, community service and creative activities  at all SDSU, SDSURF, and Field Research sites beginning on April 19, 2021.* 

  • In-person research is opened for all approved undergraduates, including lower division students.

  • In-person research is opened for approved volunteers.

  • Addition of student and staff to an approved project at density levels double of that approved during red phase (red phase criteria: 1 person per 250 sq).

  • All additions or deletions of personnel involved in an approved research project must be submitted using the OnBase Addition/Removal form.  

  • Face to face human subjects research may be allowed if evidence is presented that it can be done safely. In addition to IRB approval, an SOP must be submitted to [email protected] describing how the project will be adapted to limit exposure of human subjects and research personnel, and implementation of required safety practices including wearing face masks, physical distancing except for very brief interactions with the human subjects if required, disinfection, and hand hygiene. In addition, in some cases COVID-19 testing may be required to ensure safety of human subjects and personnel.  

  • For the protection of others, the standard safety criteria are also required for fully-vaccinated individuals. This includes physical distancing and wearing a face-mask at all times while on campus. 


Approval for restarting research:

OnBase Form: A one-stop process for research repopulation requests

Simple Instructions for using OnBase

Re-populating Faculty and Graduate Students: Framework for Restarting Research

Updated Research Phase Criteria (SDSU is in ORANGE phase)


4/15 Repopulation Notice


Resources for restarting research:

INSTRUCTIONS: How to Check Testing Status

Scheduling Template

COVID-19 Return to Work Training and Agreement for Research and Scholarly Activities

COVID-19 Screening Form

SDSU COVID-19 Case Alert Protocol

Access to Safety Supplies

COVID-19 Cleaning Guidelines for Laboratories



5.7.21 Research Town Hall

5.7.21 Research Town Hall Powerpoint

4.20.21 PI COVID Bulletin

4.12.21 PI COVID Bulletin

4.5.21 PI COVID Bulletin

3.23.21 PI COVID Bulletin

3.16.21 PI COVID Bulletin

3.12.21 Research Town Hall

3.12.21 Research Town Hall Powerpoint

3.9.21 PI COVID Bulletin

3.2.21 PI COVID Bulletin

2.23.21 PI COVID Bulletin

2.16.21 PI COVID Bulletin

2.9.21 PI COVID Bulletin

2.2.21 PI COVID Bulletin

1.29.21 Research Town Hall

1.25.21 PI COVID Bulletin

12.15.20 PI COVID Bulletin

12.4.20 Research Safety

10.9.20 Research Town Hall

9.8.20 Safely Reopulating Labs Communication

6.9.20 Email from Provost about Restarting Phase 2 Research

6.18.20 Faculty Research Repopulation Planning Webinar Recording #2

5.21.20 Faculty Research Repopulation Planning Webinar Recording #1

6.04.20 Research Restart Letter

4.06.20 Building Access Guidelines for Non-Critical Personnel during COVID-19 Pandemic

3.20.20 Information Needed and Additional Guidance

3.18.20 Critical Research Guidance for SDSU Researchers

3.17.20 Additional Guidance for Researchers in Response to COVID-19

3.14.2020 email to Principal Investigators: Research Continuity Plans

Also see: SDSU Research Foundation Coronavirus Updates