Living on Campus

The university is reducing population density in residence halls for the 2020-21 academic year to help maintain appropriate physical distancing.

Phased reopening of Student Life facilities

Beginning Aug. 10 and continuing through Aug. 24, some Student Life facilities will reopen. These include the Ohio Union, recreational facilities and dining services locations.

For a list of locations, reopening dates and hours of operation, visit the Student Life website.

All facilities will be expected to follow face mask, physical distancing, occupancy and disinfecting guidelines. Appropriate signage will be in place.

Summer updates on housing

Ohio State temporarily expanded the housing exemption criteria for returning second-year students for the 2020-21 academic year. Second-year students with questions about the exemption process should email housing@osu.edu.

The university emailed an update to returning students (e.g., second-year, third-year, fourth-year students) at their Ohio State email address on June 19. Final assignments and roommate information will be available in mid-July.

Incoming first-year students will receive housing and roommate assignments in mid-July.

Expectations for those in residence halls

In addition to the protective practices required for everyone on campus, residents will follow additional expectations and guidelines for housing outlined by the university.

  • Face masks are required in all common areas, such as lobbies, study spaces, laundry facilities, etc. Face masks are also required if students are gathering or socializing in rooms. The number of individuals congregating in a residential room should be limited to facilitate physical distancing.
  • Students are encouraged to maintain good hygiene, including washing their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after visiting a public place, using the restroom, blowing their nose, coughing, sneezing or touching their face. If soap and water are not available, hand sanitizer that contains at least 70% alcohol should be used.
  • For the health and safety of our university community, visitors (anyone living outside of a student’s specific residential community) will not be permitted after student move-in. Overnight guests are also prohibited.
  • Programming will continue to be provided to residents as a hallmark of the residential experience. Virtual connection tools will be used to facilitate programming when possible, or small groups will convene to promote physical distancing.
  • Information about cleaning protocols and responsibilities for students residing in university housing will be shared prior to Aug. 12. 

Additional details are available on housing.osu.edu.

Accountability measures

Accountability measures will be in place for those who do not complete the training and sign the pledge, or choose not to abide by required health and safety guidelines. These accountability measures may range from additional training and informal coaching to formal disciplinary action based on existing structures for students, faculty and staff. They are available here.


Please reference this website for the most up-to-date guidelines. The university’s COVID-19 Transition Task Force’s Safe Campus and Scientific Advisory Subgroup will continue monitoring changing conditions and consult with local and state health authorities. Recommendations and requirements will be refined as needed.