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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

AU's COVID policy was updated in March 2024. Read on for more information on the current policy.

Who do I have to notify if I test positive for Covid?

American University no longer requires community members to self-report a positive diagnosis.

Students, please communicate directly with each of your professors to make arrangements for missing any work while you are sick and/or self-isolating. Faculty have the discretion to make alternative arrangements when students are sick. You can also contact your academic advisor for additional support. If your absence from class is longer than a few consecutive days and you have sought medical attention, you should contact the Office of the Dean of Students for additional support. 

Faculty and staff, notify your supervisor that you will not be able to come to campus. If you are not well enough to work remotely or your modality does not allow for remote work, report sick leave consistent with the Sick and Safe Leave Policy. If you have questions regarding your work arrangements, please contact

Do I still need to isolate if I test positive for COVID?

Yes. If you test positive or are experiencing a respiratory illness, you should isolate. American University follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations for isolation. For more information, please visit the CDC's page on preventing the spread of respiratory viruses.

On-campus residents must isolate in their current residence hall rooms. They can leave their room to acquire food and supplies, attend medical appointments, and conduct other necessary activities while following safety protocols (such as masking and hygiene). University staff do not proactively outreach to individuals who test positive.

What if I’m not feeling well?

To support our community and your personal health, please stay home when you are sick, get tested if you exhibit COVID symptoms or have been exposed to a confirmed case, wear a mask if you are in close proximity of others, and wash your hands often.

Does AU provide COVID testing?

Rapid Tests are available until May 10 at the following locations:

  • Main Campus – Student Health Center, McCabe Hall: 8 am - 5 pm
  • Washington College of Law – Information Desk, Warren Building: 8:30 am- 5 pm
  • 4401 Connecticut Avenue - WAMU Reception Desk: 9 am - 2 pm

A PCR test can be obtained by using your insurance at local pharmacies or through your health care provider.

Are masks required in university facilities?

In most locations, masks will continue to be optional, including in classrooms and residence halls.

The Student Health Center will expect students to wear masks when they come into the SHC space and are presenting with respiratory symptoms.

As always, anyone who tests positive for COVID should wear a mask when in public or in proximity to others.

Masks are available at the MGC Information Desk, the AU Welcome Center in the Katzen Arts Center, 1st Floor Suite 116 in the School of International Service, the Spring Valley Building, the WCL Warren Reception Desk, and the First Floor reception desk at 4401 Connecticut Avenue.

Does AU require vaccinations/boosters for students, faculty, staff, and visitors?

No. COVID vaccinations and boosters are strongly recommended, but are not required for AU community members or guests/visitors.

Do I still need to provide proof of COVID vaccination/booster to enroll or be employed at AU?

No. As of May 11, 2023, students, faculty, and staff no longer need to provide proof of COVID vaccination/booster.

Why is the university requiring other vaccines but not COVID?

Many vaccines prevent infection or illness. Some are required by DC law, including MMR and Hepatitis B. The COVID vaccine has been demonstrated to limit severity of disease, which is a critical outcome but it does not have the same outcomes for preventing infections.

Will AU provide students, faculty, and staff with accommodations if immunocompromised?

AU has existing processes in place to request accommodations. Students, please contact the Academic Support and Access Center (ASAC) to request disability-related academic accommodations. Faculty and Staff should submit a request to Human Resources to request workplace accommodations.

Is AU providing physical and mental health support for those suffering from the effects of COVID? 

Faculty/Staff can utilize the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program. Students, reach out to the Center for Well-Being and Psychological Services for psychological support and the Student Health Center for medical issues. Please note that while AU supports people with COVID-related challenges, we do not have specific mental health treatment programs for people with long COVID.