Mandatory COVID-19 Testing

COVID testing provides a layer of community protection for TU students, faculty and staff. 

Initial COVID-19 Testing

Following University System of Maryland (USM) protocols around COVID-19 testing, all students, faculty and staff returning to Towson University’s campus in person must provide a negative COVID-19 PCR test result within 10 days prior to returning to campus.

COVID-19 Retesting

As part of the university's continuing efforts to support campus health and safety, TU is requiring that all individuals routinely on campus for more than four hours a week get retested at the University Health Center. Retesting should be completed as soon as possible

This additional round of testing provides another layer of community protection — along with the daily Tigers Care QuickScan and the other important Tigers Care initiatives such as wearing masks, physical distancing and regular/frequent sanitization of hands and commonly used equipment.

No Retest Needed

The second COVID-19 PCR test result is not required for the following individuals: 

  • students who are taking fewer than four hours of in-person classes per week
  • faculty or staff who are working fully remotely and will not be coming to campus for four hours or more a week (Contact your direct supervisor with any questions.)
  • anyone who tested positive for COVID-19 in the past three months 

Testing on Campus

All COVID testing must be done at the TU Health Center’s outdoor COVID test site, open from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Only an on-site test will be accepted during the second wave of testing, except for staff based in satellite locations such as TUNE, Hagerstown and Shady Grove. 

To reduce wait times, there will be an express lane for those who bring the following documents printed and completed: 

The tests conducted on campus are administered via a gentle swab of the lower nasal passage, placed less than one inch into the nose. Results from the campus tests are returned in two to five business days.

University Health Services will notify you by email if your test result is negative. They will contact you by phone if your result is positive.  

If you have not heard anything after five business days, you may call the Health Center at 410-704-2466 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. to request your result. 

Frequently asked questions

What does a positive result mean?

A positive result means that you have COVID-19.

If you test positive but are not experiencing any symptoms, you should not come to campus. You should also contact your healthcare provider and self-isolate for at least 10 days, as long as you remain symptom free. You should continue to monitor for symptoms and if symptoms do develop, discuss these symptoms along with any treatment or other recommendations, with your healthcare provider.

What does a negative result mean?

A negative test result means that the virus that causes COVID-19 was not found in your sample. In a person is experiencing illness symptoms at the time the sample was collected, this usually means that COVID-19 did not cause the illness.
It is possible for this test to give a negative result that is incorrect in some people with COVID-19. Your healthcare provider will consider the test result together with any symptoms and possible exposures in deciding how to best care for you.
It is also possible for this test to give a negative result when tested very early during the infection. If at any time you develop symptoms, you should contact your healthcare provider.

Keep in mind that a negative result does not mean that you cannot still acquire COVID-19 infection in the future.

How can I help to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
  • Keep a safe distance (at least 6 feet apart) from others
  • Avoid touching your mouth and eyes
  • Wash your hands often, using soap and water and washing for at least 20 seconds
  • Wear a mask when indoors and when in close contact with others
  • Always cover your cough
  • Stay home when you are feeling sick
  • Monitor yourself for symptoms and reply to daily university symptom tracking emails