FAQs

Student looking at a phone.
Frequently Asked Questions




Submit a Complaint

Western’s Code of Student Conduct is a complaint-driven process. The code is primarily used to respond to situations that occur on campus or that jeopardize the health and safety of the campus community. Anyone can submit a complaint, and all complaints will be reviewed.


Student FAQs

Academics

1. What changes have been made to the fall term?

Effective September 17, the university will move back to a modified version of Western Phase Three in its return-to-campus plan, which includes suspending athletics and recreation as well as in-person student club meetings and events, which will go back to virtual mode for now, and restricting access to some campus buildings.

We are working hard to ensure that we will be able to offer the very high-quality student experience that is consistent with the world-class university we are, and that you and your families expect.

It won’t be the fall semester we all would have expected under normal times, but we think it will still be a positive experience to be in London, among your friends, classmates and teachers.

We will need your help to make this work. Keeping the campus community safe will be incredibly complicated and will be a shared responsibility.

We will continue to provide support to help you manage your academics, finances and well-being so you can thrive even if you’re not on campus. Visit Digital Student Experience for a variety of resources.

2. Where can I get a COVID-19 test on campus?

For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page

3. What can students do to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

The health and safety of our campus is a shared responsibility. We must take thoughtful and persistent steps to take care of ourselves, each other, and our community. If we all do our part and take precautionary measures, we work together to create a safer and healthier Western community.

A reminder that all student returning to campus complete the daily Return to Campus Questionnaire each day before coming to campus. More details on this and steps you can take to be safe once on campus are available on the Health & Safety Measures page.

House parties put our community at great risk. We expect our students to comply with public health rules. Western is student not to host parties. Not to attend parties and to limit your social activities to your roommates and significant others to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

4. My fall term or winter term lecture, lab, or tutorial is listed as "online." Can I complete all requirements online?

Yes, if your lecture, lab, or tutorial is identified as "online," all aspects of the lecture/lab/tutorial component can be completed online.  Note that other components of the same course may require your presence on campus unless they are identified as online as well.

5. If my course introduces in-person meetings later on, do I have to attend in person?

No, you need not attend in person. Even if a course introduces face-to-face meetings as an option at some later date, you will still be able to complete all aspects of the course online.

6. My lecture, lab, or tutorial is listed as "on campus." Do I have to attend the lectures, labs, or tutorials on campus to complete the requirements?

Yes, you should be prepared to come to campus for the face-to-face aspects of the course.

7. Are there any computer or internet requirements for courses?

Due to uncertainty around Covid-19, students must have a reliable internet connection and computer that are compatible with online learning and testing system requirements. Some courses may also require the use of a remote proctoring platform (such as Proctortrack) to ensure tests are taken fairly in accordance with Western's policy on Scholastic Discipline for Undergraduate Students and Scholastic Discipline for Graduate Students. Refer to the course syllabus and Western's Remote Proctoring Website for further information.

8. How do I access the Office of the Registrar/Student Central services during this time?

Visit the Office of the Registrar for contact information and office hours.

9. I am a graduate student/postdoctoral scholar/Graduate Teaching Assistant. Where can I find information?

The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies has created a website to keep Western’s graduate and postdoctoral community updated with the latest information related to COVID-19. You will find information there regarding funding, fees, admissions, etc. If you have questions, please email sgps_questions@uwo.ca.

10. I am an international student. Where can I find information specifically for me?

Information, including contacts and FAQs for international students, can be found at Western International.

11. I am a Western student currently studying abroad. Where can I get information specifically for me?

Following the global travel advisory issued by the Government of Canada on March 13, 2020, Western strongly encouraged any students abroad to return to Canada. All university-sanctioned student mobility/travel is cancelled until April 30, 2021. 

Students still abroad or those who have questions about student travel abroad may email travelregistry@uwo.ca or call 519-661-2111, ext. 89309. Please visit Western International for more information.

Reminder: Any individual returning to Canada from outside the country must comply with a mandatory 14-day quarantine and other travel requirements

12. Where can I get textbooks and course materials for online classes?

All online courses will utilize digital materials and e-textbooks, which can be easily accessed online through the Book Store website. Purchase and receive your digital materials in minutes, so you can shop and study at a time that works best for you.

Log into your Student Services account to view your personal textbook list. Be sure to check back regularly before your summer or intercession course starts, as your textbook list could change as faculty continue in moving courses online.

If digital resources are not available through the Book Store, we’ll try out best to provide the information on how to access required course materials elsewhere.

Western Libraries also has a large collection of online materials available to you for free. You can access these resources in the library catalogue . Some faculty may choose to link course readings directly into your OWL course, in which case you’ll see a link on your course site called “Course Readings” on the left menu. If you have questions about finding materials, library staff are available to assist you.

13. Will students be able to complete required internships and clinical placements?

Undergraduate internship and co-op opportunities are continuing as planned, with strategies in place to support modifications to experiences, as needed.

At this time the Arthur Labatt School of Nursing, with the support of our professional practice partners, plans to proceed with clinical placements. The plan is for nursing students to return to clinical placement experiences the week of July 6th; this group includes 3rd year students who are completing their winter placements (which were interrupted due to COVID-19) and 4th year students who begin their 4th year placements in the summer term. In the fall term we also have 3rd and 4th year students going into clinical practice. However, all of our clinical practice plans are subject to change in response to the evolving COVID-19 situation. 

At the graduate level, internships and placements are generally scheduled to begin during the third term of study, which is May to August.  Students in graduate programs that require completion of an internship or placement will be supported in exploring remote experiences or alternate projects, as needed.

Required placements in professional programs (e.g. Education, Dentistry, Medicine) during the Fall term will be supported and/or adapted to ensure that students are able to meet progression requirements.  A pause in the Dietetics program may occur if onsite placements cannot resume in fall 2020.

Student Support & Services

1. What changes have been made to the fall term?

Effective September 17, the university will move back to a modified version of Western Phase Three in its return-to-campus plan, which includes suspending athletics and recreation as well as in-person student club meetings and events, which will go back to virtual mode for now, and restricting access to some campus buildings.

We are working hard to ensure that we will be able to offer the very high-quality student experience that is consistent with the world-class university we are, and that you and your families expect.

It won’t be the fall semester we all would have expected under normal times, but we think it will still be a positive experience to be in London, among your friends, classmates and teachers.

We will need your help to make this work. Keeping the campus community safe will be incredibly complicated and will be a shared responsibility.

We will continue to provide support to help you manage your academics, finances and well-being so you can thrive even if you’re not on campus. Visit Digital Student Experience for a variety of resources.

2. How can I access campus mental or physical health supports?

If you need support of any kind at any time, please contact: Student Support & Case Management at or 519-661-2111 x89152.

3. Where can I get a COVID-19 test on campus?

For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page.

4. What is happening with athletics and recreation?

Effective September 17, Western is suspending in-person athletics and recreation and temporarily closing its Campus Recreation and Sport facilities. 

Athletics/Sport and Recreation will continue to offer digital programming:

  • Coaches will continue to digitally support and engage with their teams and student-athletes
  • Strength & Conditioning training will continue online
  • Digital fitness classes will be offered every day and e-sports tournaments are upcoming

We will continue to look at expanding digital offerings and working with our partners on digital activities that will inspire spirit and build connections. Visit westernmustangs.ca for more information.

5. What is happening in residences?

With Western reverting back to a modified Phase 3 of our reopening plan, we are pausing all non-academic in-person gatherings, and restricting access to some buildings and common areas on campus, including in residences.

Find more information on specific restrictions here: https://news.has.uwo.ca/w/9t.

6. Where can I find information on what's open and what's closed on campus?

In the modified phase three of the return-to-campus plan, most Western buildings remain open. Students will still need their Western ONECards to sign in to classrooms. We will continue to provide information and updates on what's open and what's closed here: uwo.ca/coronavirus/whats-open.html.

7. How do I access Western Libraries’ services?

Western Libraries remain open. Since we have reopened the libraries to the campus community, visitors have been successfully following demonstrated adherence to new campus and library health and safety protocols, and we are grateful for the support. Please visit the Western Libraries COVID-19 page for updates. 

8. Where can I find out more about opportunities to participate in learning, receive support and connect with the University community at this challenging time?

A wide range of opportunities is available to enhance your learning, receive support and connect with the University community. Visit the Digital Student Experience website for a variety of resources open to you. You can also visit the University Students’ Council page or Society of Graduate Students website to find out what your student leaders are planning for you in online spaces, and how to get involved.

If you need support of any kind at any time, you can also contact: Student Support & Case Management at sscm@uwo.ca or 519-661-2111 x89152.

Fees & Financial Support

1. Where can I find information about financial support?

We know this is a challenging time, as you navigate the impact of COVID-19 in your academic, personal, and professional lives. You can find information on the Financial Support for Western Students website regarding support available at Western and through the provincial and federal governments, as well as strategies for navigating job prospects during these uncertain times.

2. Will there be changes to fees for the 2020 fall/winter or summer terms?

Transition to online delivery of our programs has not changed the amount that we are investing to ensure academic integrity and quality for our students.

Western continues to provide the core services funded through tuition and other revenue sources. In addition to your learning from instructors, Western continues to provide support services, financial aid advice and academic guidance for undergraduate and graduate students.

As such, there are no changes to tuition for the 2020 fall/winter term.

All of our student programming and supports will continue to be available, though in different models of delivery, during our blended delivery of education.

As such, Western is planning to continue with full ancillary fees for the 2020-21 school year, with the exception of three fees associated with sports and recreation. The Campus Recreation, Intercollegiate Athletics, and Thompson Athletic Centre fees will be reduced by 50% of the approved fee levels for the fall term, in part due to the cancellation of competitive sport by provincial sport associations.  Students will have these fees adjusted on their online statement of account.

While we have reduced these fees, we are not planning a reduction in programming. Recreation and sport are vital to the student experience and central to student well-being. The university remains committed to ensuring students have access to spaces and continued recreational programming both on-campus and online.

We continue to offer career development, academic support, leadership, and medical and health appointments and programs – all available through links on the Digital Student Experience website.

Decisions on the winter term fees will be made at a later date.

Western’s leadership team is working closely with student leaders to develop strategies and supports to address students’ immediate financial and academic challenges precipitated by the pandemic. Some of the supports already announced include: 

  • An additional $13.5 million in student financial aid for the coming year (admissions bursaries for undergrads)
  • One-time, needs-based graduate student summer bursaries for PhD and research master’s students
  • $11 million in refunds for students in residence

Students with questions regarding fees or financial aid may find additional information or submit a question by visiting the Office of the Registrar or the School of Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies

 

3. I am approved for Work Study but now I cannot work. Can I be re-assessed for bursary consideration?

Please contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss your situation: contact@uwo.ca.

Health & Safety

1. How will Western ensure campus is safe?

As COVID-19 cases rise across Ontario, and with Western University students among those who have tested positive for COVID-19, effective immediately the university is moving back to a modified version of Phase 3 of our Return to Campus plan.

More details about the modified version of Phase 3 will be shared as soon as those details are available.

This phased return plan provides flexibility to adapt and comply with public health protocols, while supporting faculty and staff who are balancing home life with work.

Employees required to come to campus will be notified by their supervisor. Those requiring access to campus for research, teaching and supporting students can continue to return to campus, following health and safety protocols.

A reminder that those returning to campus must view a training module video and complete the Return to Campus Questionnaire each day before coming to campus. More details on this and steps you can take to be safe once on campus are available on the Health & Safety Measures page.

2. What will physical distancing look like at Western?

Physical distancing requirements have reduced the capacity of our campus.

Please practice physical distancing. When possible, stay two metres apart. 

Many of our largest courses will be delivered online throughout the fall and winter terms.

We are also aiming for clinical programs, some undergraduate seminars and labs, and labs for research-based graduate students to be delivered in-person.

Access to libraries, computer labs and other learning and personal resources is different than in the past.

3. Will I have to wear a mask at Western?

As of June 17, 2020, Western requires the use of non-medical masks/face coverings in the presence of others and in common and shared spaces on campus. These act as a personal hygiene measure to protect others from potential infectious droplets. We work closely with, and take our direction from, local, provincial and federal public health authorities and should this requirement change, this website will be updated.

Western students, faculty and staff will receive Western-branded, made-in-Ontario masks as we return to campus this fall to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

If you require an accommodation for a disability, please contact accessibility@uwo.ca, masks with the transparent mouth pieces are available.

4. How do I report an illness?

The Self-Reported Absence System will be available for undergraduate students for the Fall/Winter 2020-2021 term. Visit the Academic Considerations page for more information.

5. Where can I get a COVID-19 test on campus?

For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page.

6. What are the quarantining and testing requirements for students arriving in Canada from abroad?

All students (domestic and international) who arrive in Canada from abroad are required to complete a 14-day quarantine and must register their quarantine plan/location with Western via the Register My Quarantine Plan form prior to, or immediately upon, arrival in Canada.

In addition, any student who was in quarantine on August 15, or arrived on or after August 15, is now required by the Ontario government to be tested for COVID-19 at the end of their quarantine period. For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page.

If students have completed their 14-day quarantine and are symptom-free, they can come to campus to obtain the test. Students must wear a mask and bring their WesternONE ID card or student number. Students who have been in quarantine may come to campus only for the test, return home and wait for results prior to resuming your regular routine or attending class/labs/tutorials. Results will be available within approximately 24 hours.

Please note that Western offers a range of support including assistance securing off-campus quarantine accommodations, and daily wellness check-ins for all students in quarantine.

If you have any questions about quarantining and/or testing at the end of quarantine, please contact iesc@uwo.ca.

7. Where can I get a face mask?

Undergraduate students will receive two masks that can be picked up on the main level of Western Student Services Building Sept. 21 to Sept. 28 from 11 am to 4 pm with a Western ONECard. 

Students who indicated they were living in London off campus when they uploaded their photo for their first Western ONECard will be mailed their masks with their Western ONECards.

Students living in residence will receive an additional two masks upon move in.

Graduate students should contact their supervisor or faculty supply requisitioner to receive their masks.

For those with approved accommodations who are unable to wear a mask, Western will provide a face shield. Accommodation requests can be made via Accessible Education.




Faculty FAQs

1. What is Western 'return to campus' plan for faculty and staff?

Western is planning a phased ‘return to campus’ approach, providing flexibility to adapt and comply with public health and government protocols, and to support employees who may face challenges in balancing home life with work. 

Each phase allows units to permit employees to have a gradual, rotational, and periodic presence on campus. The dates of each phase are subject to change depending on directives from government or public health authorities.

Ensuring the health and safety of our campus community is paramount, and meeting physical distancing requirements is critical. 

As we  gradually transition back  to campus, employees will receive information from their supervisors on when they will be required to report to work on campus. Most employees should continue to work from home unless specifically required to come to campus. If staff feel they must come to campus for work, they should speak with their supervisor.

Learn more at Return to Campus

2. What measures are in place to ensure the health and safety of the campus community?

The health and safety of our campus community is our top priority.

To achieve this during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have and will continue to implement some significant changes.

Those returning to campus will experience a new environment - additional signage, new rules and regulations, changes to our physical spaces - things will look and feel a bit different.

Our students, faculty, and staff, are important partners in these efforts. When each of us adheres to these changes and follows the appropriate precautions, we make our entire community safer.

Learn more more at Health & Safety Measures

3. When can faculty access their offices?

Commencing September 14, most academic buildings will be open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. or later as class schedules dictate. For campus services such as eateries and libraries, we’ve compiled a list of what’s open and when.

4. What steps should I take when returning to campus?

Before returning to work on campus, employees must:


Once on campus:

  • Practice physical distancing. When possible, stay two metres apart.
  • Wear a non-medical mask/face covering. This is required when in the presence of others and in common and shared spaces on campus. Western is supplying all employees with three washable masks.
  • Wash hands thoroughly and often and avoid touching your face.
  • Disinfect your desk, work area, computer equipment and tools frequently.

5. Where can I get a COVID-19 test on campus?

For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page.

6. How do students know if their course is online or not?

The Fall/Winter Academic Timetable states for each course component (lecture, lab, tutorial) whether it is online or in-person. If all course components, including lecture, lab, and tutorial, that students register in are listed as online, the course is fully online and will not require the student’s presence on campus.  If at least one of the student’s lecture, lab, or tutorial sections is listed as in-person, the student will be expected to attend campus for those components. Note that in some cases, students have the option to select between online or in-person components.

7. If a fall term or winter term lecture, lab, or tutorial is listed as "online” can students complete all requirements online?

Yes, if the student’s lecture, lab, or tutorial is identified as "online," all aspects of the lecture/lab/tutorial component can be completed online. Note that other components of the same course may require the student’s presence on campus unless they are identified as online as well.

8. If a course introduces in-person meetings later on, do students have to attend in person?

No. Even if a course introduces face-to-face meetings as an option at some later date, students will still be able to complete all aspects of the course online.

9. Will students have to come to campus to write face-to-face tests or exams for an online course?

No. All fully online courses (i.e. which do not require presence on campus) will have an online option for any tests or exams. This will be the case even if in-person sections are available as an option, and even if the option of a face-to-face test or exam is provided at a later date. Any course with mandatory in-person components (e.g. lecture, lab, or tutorial) may schedule face-to-face, in-person tests and exams. Students should consult the course outline for details.

10. If a lecture, lab, or tutorial is listed as "on campus", do students have to attend the lectures, labs, or tutorials on campus to complete the requirements?

Yes, students hould be prepared to come to campus for the face-to-face aspects of the course.

11. What is Western’s research recovery plan?

To ensure the safety of our community, Western is following a four-phased return to research activity. Learn more at Research Recovery Plan .

12. How can I access online teaching support?

Western is offering a variety of resources to help faculty and teaching assistants. Please visit the Centre for Teaching and Learning website.

Western Libraries

You can also use Western Libraries Course Readings service. This service provides students with free access to course reading materials made available through the Libraries' collection. Through this service, Western Libraries will help you integrate your Course Readings directly into OWL, as well as create stable links to online resources, purchase new eBooks for the collection, and more.

To get started, add the Course Readings plugin tool to your OWL course site or send your syllabus to coursereadings@uwo.ca. Course readings requests will be processed in the order they are received. Western Libraries is unable to scan materials from Western’s collection or set up short-term reserves for loan. These services will resume when libraries reopen to staff. 

For more information, visit the  Course Readings Guide or contact  coursereadings@uwo.ca.

13. How do I prepare online course materials for my course adoption?

Submit your course adoption requests online at The Book Store at Western website . The Book Store team will work with you to source digital materials—including both free and paid content. 

Once sourced, all digital course materials can be easily accessed through the Book Store  eBook webpage . Online course materials are sourced through  Campus eBookstore Inc (CEI) , the leader in distribution of digital course materials in North America. The CEI platform provides The Book Store with access to over 302,000 digital resources (including e-texts, access codes, and OER materials). 

If digital resources are not available, students will be provided with information in their booklist for accessing required course materials elsewhere. 

If you have any questions, please email coursematerials@uwo.ca

Western Libraries

You can also use Western Libraries’ Course Readings service. This service provides students with free access to course reading materials made available through the Libraries' collection.  Through this service, Western Libraries will help you integrate your Course Readings directly into OWL, as well as create stable links to online resources, purchase new eBooks for the collection, and more.

To get started, add the Course Readings plugin tool to your OWL course site or send your syllabus to coursereadings@uwo.ca.  Course readings requests will be processed in the order they are received. 

Western Libraries is unable to set up short-term loans for physical material at this time. Public health guidelines require libraries to quarantine library materials for 72 hours after they have been physically handled to mitigate spread of the virus. This makes offering a print-based, short-term loan service impractical.

For more information, visit the Course Readings Guide or contact coursereadings@uwo.ca.

14. How can I prepare a custom course book?

Please submit materials in PDF format by emailing askccb@uwo.ca, including a Table of Contents if applicable.

Please note The Book Store team is currently working remotely and with fewer resources. As a result, there are limited capabilities to scan materials. For content that needs to be cleared through copyright, permissions may take longer to process, or may not be possible to obtain.

15. How do I access Western Libraries?

Western Libraries has been working with campus health and safety partners to adapt in-person library services to meet provincial guidelines. This includes reducing occupancy in campus libraries to support physical distancing and prioritizing access to spaces to support currently registered students, staff and faculty. More information on Western Libraries collections and services, including enhanced digital resources and remote supports, is available online.

16. How can I access campus mental or physical health supports during this time?

Western's Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

Western’s Family Practice Clinic remains open, however, only those with an in-person appointment scheduled should visit UCC 11. We are currently booking appointments via email.

Summer clinic hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Wednesdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. No walk-ins will be seen, you must have an appointment. If you are a patient with the Family Practice Clinic, you can book an in-person or telehealth appointment with a doctor by emailing us at fpcappt@uwo.ca . We continue to provide virtual health & wellness care Monday-Friday 9am-4pm, feel free to email us for support.

Please note: any patient experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 will be redirected to an assessment center for evaluation.

As we continue to monitor the ongoing COVID-19 situation, our hours of operation may change. Please email the clinic for the most up-to-date hours. We ask that you avoid booking non-essential medical visits as much as possible during this time.

17. Where can I find resources that will help me work from home?

Human Resources has several resources that will support you as you work from home , including tips on virtual meetings and working from home with kids.

18. How can I access information technology (IT) support during this time?

Please visit Western Technology Services (WTS) for assistance with online teaching, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Owl, Blackboard Collaborate, WROAMS, etc. You can also call the WTS Helpdesk at 519-661-3800 Mondays to Thursdays 8:30 am to 10:30 pm, Fridays 8:30 am to 4:30 pm and Sundays 4:30 pm to 10:30 pm or submit a service ticket for assistance.

19. Where can I get meals on campus ?

Information on campus eateries is available at https://eateries.uwo.ca.

Other Campus Eateries

Location Hours
The Grad Club Open for takeout only
USC Wave Closed
USC Spoke Open for takeout only

20. How do I notify Western if I am sick or unable to report to work?

Employees must use Western’s  Absence Notification Tool  or call Human Resources at 519-661-2194 and select option 3, and should also continue to follow normal departmental communication processes for absence notification. The tool is designed to provide the University with the vital information to track and monitor unanticipated absences from scheduled work during the COVID-19 pandemic. A newly adopted policy requires all Faculty and Staff members (including part-time, contract, Postdocs, Graduate Teaching Assistants and Student Employees) to report each day of an unanticipated absence using the tool.

21. How can I access Faculty Relations during this time?

Faculty Relations is currently operating virtually weekdays between the hours of 8:30 am and 4:30 pm. For more information, please visit the Faculty Relations website .

23. What is happening with athletics and recreation in the fall?

Effective September 17, Western is suspending in-person athletics and recreation and temporarily closing its Campus Recreation and Sport facilities. 

Athletics/Sport and Recreation will continue to offer digital programming:

  • Coaches will continue to digitally support and engage with their teams and student-athletes
  • Strength & Conditioning training will continue online
  • Digital fitness classes will be offered every day and e-sports tournaments are upcoming

We will continue to look at expanding digital offerings and working with our partners on digital activities that will inspire spirit and build connections. Visit westernmustangs.ca for more information.

24. What will parking on campus look like this fall?

Western Parking & Visitor Services will resume collecting fees for faculty and staff parking permits in September. In support of faculty and staff working virtually and only on-campus from time to time this fall, daily rate maximums have been reduced to $8.00 at select ‘pay & display’ lots for the 2020-21 academic year starting September 1. For more information on parking visit: https://www.uwo.ca/parking/find/visitor/metered.html

25. What do guests or visitors to campus need to know with respect to COVID-19 protocols?

All visitors to Western must follow these directions with respect to COVID-19 protocols, to ensure the safety of our campus community:

Before coming to campus

  • If feeling unwell, stay home.
  • Complete the Ontario Public Health self-assessment questionnaire https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/
  • Symptoms of COVID-19 include, but are not limited to: cough, fever, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, runny nose, stuffy nose, sore throat, painful swallowing, headache, chills, muscle or joint aches, feeling unwell in general, new fatigue or severe exhaustion, gastrointestinal symptoms (such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or unexplained loss of appetite), loss of sense of smell or taste, or pink eye.  Stay up to date on the symptoms related to COVID-19 by visiting https://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-stop-spread#section-0

Once on campus

  • Practice physical distancing. When possible, stay two metres apart.
  • Wear a non-medical mask/face covering. This is required when in the presence of others and in common and shared spaces on campus.
  • Wash hands thoroughly and often and avoid touching your face.
  • Disinfect your work area, equipment and tools frequently.
  • Wear gloves when delivering or removing items from campus locations.
  • Please visit https://www.uwo.ca/coronavirus/health-safety.html to learn about the steps that Western is taking to keep our campus community safe. 


Staff FAQs

1. What is Western’s ‘return to campus’ plan for faculty and staff?

Western is planning a phased ‘return to campus’ approach, providing flexibility to adapt and comply with public health and government protocols, and to support employees who may face challenges in balancing home life with work. 

Each phase allows units to permit employees to have a gradual, rotational, and periodic presence on campus. The dates of each phase are subject to change depending on directives from government or public health authorities.

Ensuring the health and safety of our campus community is paramount, and meeting physical distancing requirements is critical. 

As we gradually transition back to campus, employees will receive information from their supervisors on when they will be required to report to work on campus. Most employees should continue to work from home unless specifically required to come to campus. If staff feel they must come to campus for work, they should speak with their supervisor.

Learn more at Return to Campus

2. What measures are in place to ensure the health and safety of the campus community?

The health and safety of our campus community is our top priority.

To achieve this during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have and will continue to implement some significant changes.

Those returning to campus will experience a new environment - additional signage, new rules and regulations, changes to our physical spaces - things will look and feel a bit different.

Our students, faculty, and staff, are important partners in these efforts. When each of us adheres to these changes and follows the appropriate precautions, we make our entire community safer.

Learn more at Health & Safety Measures

3. What steps should I take when returning to campus?

Before returning to work on campus, employees must:


Once on campus:

  • Practice physical distancing. When possible, stay two metres apart.
  • Wear a non-medical mask/face covering. This is required when in the presence of others and in common and shared spaces on campus. Western is supplying all employees with three washable masks.
  • Wash hands thoroughly and often and avoid touching your face.
  • Disinfect your desk, work area, computer equipment and tools frequently.

4. How can I access campus mental or physical health supports during this time?

Western's Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) can be accessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

Western’s Family Practice Clinic remains open, however, only those with an in-person appointment scheduled should visit UCC 11. We are currently booking appointments via email.

Summer clinic hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and Wednesdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. No walk-ins will be seen, you must have an appointment. If you are a patient with the Family Practice Clinic, you can book an in-person or telehealth appointment with a doctor by emailing us at fpcappt@uwo.ca . We continue to provide virtual health & wellness care Monday-Friday 9am-4pm, feel free to email us for support. 

Please note: any patient experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 will be redirected to an assessment center for evaluation.

As we continue to monitor the ongoing COVID-19 situation, our hours of operation may change. Please email the clinic for the most up-to-date hours. We ask that you avoid booking non-essential medical visits as much as possible during this time.

5. Where can I get a COVID-19 test on campus?

For information on testing locations and hours, please visit the COVID-19 Testing on Campus page.

6. What will the fall term look like?

Western has developed a 'mixed model' for the fall that will see some of our courses (or parts of them) delivered virtually, and others face-to-face.

This model will preserve the safety of our community, carefully follow ministry and public health regulations, and preserve as much of the in-person educational experience Western is known for.

Beyond the classroom, important learning happens through experiential learning, co-ops and internships, clubs and extra-curriculars. We will work hard to provide students with as many in-person experiences as we safely can.

Ensuring the safety of our community will guide our planning as we follow public health guidelines and government protocols.

Learn more at Western’s plan for the fall semester.

7. What is Western’s research recovery plan?

To ensure the safety of our community, Western is following a four-phased return to research activity. Learn more at Research Recovery Plan .

8. How can I access information technology (IT) support during this time?

Please visit Western Technology Services (WTS) for assistance with online teaching, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Owl, Blackboard Collaborate, WROAMS, etc. You can also call the WTS Helpdesk at 519-661-3800 Mondays to Thursdays 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., Fridays 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sundays 4:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. or submit a service ticket for assistance.

9. Where can I get meals on campus?

Information on campus eateries is available at https://eateries.uwo.ca.

Other Campus Eateries

Location Hours
The Grad Club Open for takeout only
USC Wave Closed
USC Spoke Open for takeout only

10. How do I notify Western if I am sick or unable to report to work?

All faculty, staff, part time, contract and student employees can use Western’s Absence Notification Tool on MyHR or call Human Resources at 519-661-2194 and select option 3 to notify the University of unanticipated absences. Employees working from home and completing all their scheduled work remotely do not need to, and should not, complete the Absence Notification tool. The tool should be completed by employees who need to notify the University that they are not available to complete their scheduled work on any given day (on campus or remotely), due to an unanticipated absence. An absence may be due to illness, public health requirement to self-isolate, care of family members, bereavement, and other unanticipated leaves. The absence may be paid or unpaid, depending on the type of leave and the employment policies or collective agreement provisions applicable to the employee’s role at Western.

11. Will employees who become sick still receive pay?

Employees who were scheduled to work and reported their absence on the Absence Notification Tool or by contacting Human Resources may or may not be paid, depending on the employment policies or collective agreement provisions applicable to your role at Western.

12. Are employees required to provide a doctor’s note for short-term, unplanned absences?

Doctor’s notes are not required for absences shorter than 21 working days.

13. If employees have a dual-role (student and staff relationship) do they need to report absences on the Absence Notification tool and on the Illness Notification system?

Student-staff employees will be required to report to the Student Illness Notification Tool and the employee Absence Notification Tool .

14. What is happening with athletics and recreation in the fall?

Effective September 17, Western is suspending in-person athletics and recreation and temporarily closing its Campus Recreation and Sport facilities. 

Athletics/Sport and Recreation will continue to offer digital programming:

  • Coaches will continue to digitally support and engage with their teams and student-athletes
  • Strength & Conditioning training will continue online
  • Digital fitness classes will be offered every day and e-sports tournaments are upcoming

We will continue to look at expanding digital offerings and working with our partners on digital activities that will inspire spirit and build connections. Visit westernmustangs.ca for more information.

15. Who do I contact to request an on-campus event?

Please contact Cliff Fielder at cfielder@housing.uwo.ca in Hospitality Services to make your request.

16. What will parking on campus look like this fall?

Western Parking & Visitor Services will resume collecting fees for faculty and staff parking permits in September. In support of faculty and staff working virtually and only on-campus from time to time this fall, daily rate maximums have been reduced to $8.00 at select ‘pay & display’ lots for the 2020-21 academic year starting September 1. For more information on parking visit: https://www.uwo.ca/parking/find/visitor/metered.html

17. Where can I get a face mask?

Western employees will be supplied with three masks from their supervisors when returning to campus. For those with approved accommodations who are unable to wear a mask, Western will provide a face shield. Accommodation request can be made via Employee Well-being.

18. What do guests or visitors to campus need to know with respect to COVID-19 protocols?

All visitors to Western must follow these directions with respect to COVID-19 protocols, to ensure the safety of our campus community:

Before coming to campus

  • If feeling unwell, stay home.
  • Complete the Ontario Public Health self-assessment questionnaire https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment/
  • Symptoms of COVID-19 include, but are not limited to: cough, fever, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, runny nose, stuffy nose, sore throat, painful swallowing, headache, chills, muscle or joint aches, feeling unwell in general, new fatigue or severe exhaustion, gastrointestinal symptoms (such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or unexplained loss of appetite), loss of sense of smell or taste, or pink eye.  Stay up to date on the symptoms related to COVID-19 by visiting https://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-stop-spread#section-0

Once on campus

  • Practice physical distancing. When possible, stay two metres apart.
  • Wear a non-medical mask/face covering. This is required when in the presence of others and in common and shared spaces on campus.
  • Wash hands thoroughly and often and avoid touching your face.
  • Disinfect your work area, equipment and tools frequently.
  • Wear gloves when delivering or removing items from campus locations.
  • Please visit https://www.uwo.ca/coronavirus/health-safety.html to learn about the steps that Western is taking to keep our campus community safe. 

Research FAQ

1. In which phase of research recovery are we currently?

Western has established a four-phased research recovery plan.

We are currently in a modified phase three, which allows for 40 per cent occupancy; however, off-campus research participants are restricted from campus without your Dean's exemption.

2. What precautions should I take when on campus?

If your work requires you to be on campus, maintain physical distance. Determine how physical distancing can be achieved in research and social areas and consider how to minimize/avoid pinch points.

Face masks/coverings are required in public spaces. Wash your hands frequently, do not touch your face and clean surfaces. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) provides an additional layer of protection when physical distancing cannot be maintained.

Please note: the “Return to Campus Questionnaire” must be completed before each return to campus. Please also review the recommended health and safety measures.

3. Will I need to be screened prior to returning to campus?

All employees must complete a Health Assessment Questionnaire prior to returning to work. The questionnaire can be found within My Human Resources under “Return To Work Questionnaire.”

4. How will cleaning be managed?

Research personnel are expected to clean surfaces and tools prior to, and following, use. In addition, Facilities Management caretaking staff will clean floors using a hydrogen peroxide-based cleaner (ES65H) on a weekly basis and will empty garbage receptacles. They will focus on cleaning high-touch surfaces, such as door handles and light switches at least daily using disinfectant cleaner.

5. What do I do if I begin to feel ill with COVID-19 symptoms during a visit with a study participant?

In instances where research with participants is permitted, based on Western's Research Recovery Plan:

  • Stop the test and inform everyone in the room why.
  • Ask all participating people to watch for symptoms.
  • Clean the room as usual following a research study, which includes wiping everything down (deep cleaning only for confirmed cases, which would include the addition of e-cleaning).
  • Anyone with COVID-19-like symptoms should be tested based on clinical assessment.
  • a) If results are negative:
    • Inform your team to watch for symptoms; individuals need to self-isolate until 24 hours after symptom resolution.
  • b) If results are positive:
    • Individuals need to self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days from symptom onset.
    • All people in the lab who were exposed should be tested and, while waiting for test results, must quarantine.
    • The local health unit (in our case MLHU) receives positive test results, and will step in for contact tracing and provide recommendations.
  • Clean the room as usual after a research study, which includes wiping everything down (deep cleaning only for confirmed cases, which would include the addition of e-cleaning).

6. What do I tell a study participant exhibiting COVID-19-like symptoms – with or without travel history?

In instances where research with participants is permitted, based on Western's Research Recovery Plan:

  • Stop the test and inform everyone in the room why.
  • Inform your team to watch for symptoms.
  • Inform your team that this matter is confidential.
  • Anyone with COVID-19-like symptoms should be tested based on clinical assessment.
  • a) If results are negative:
    • Inform your team to watch for symptoms; individuals need to self-isolate until 24 hours after symptom resolution.
  • b) If results are positive:
    • Individuals need to self-isolate for a minimum of 14 days from symptom onset.
    • All people in the lab who were exposed should be tested and, while waiting for test results, must quarantine.
    • The local health unit (in our case MLHU) receives positive test results, and will step in for contact tracing and provide recommendations.
  • Clean the room as usual after a research study, which includes wiping everything down (deep cleaning only for confirmed cases, which would include the addition of e-cleaning).

Additional Resources:

7. Will re-entry be aligned between Western and the hospitals?

As the hospitals face additional public health precautions as inherently high-risk facilities, the university has progressed with its own recovery strategies.

8. Am I able to postpone my sabbatical because I will not be able to conduct the relevant research?

Please speak with your department chair/Dean, as relevant, as there are provisions in the faculty agreement for postponing sabbaticals.

9. Will Western extend tenure clocks for Assistant Professors?

Please speak with your department chair/Dean, as relevant, as there are provisions in the faculty agreement for extending tenure requirements.

10. How should the research community continue with reductions to service?

  • Consider, as appropriate, alternate ways of conducting research so long as doing so does not affect the project’s scientific merit or integrity. The privacy and confidentiality of participant data needs to be considered and amendments must be submitted to Western’s research ethics boards, as applicable.
  • Consider what tools, books, materials, equipment and data, etc. would allow you to continue your work at home.

11. Can I continue my research at home?

We encourage you to continue to work off-site wherever it is possible to do so.

12. Should I continue my research in the community?

We anticipate community-based face-to-face research models will be among the last to re-start.

You need to postpone your research or change your methodology to ensure you follow social distancing practices necessary for breaking the chain of transmission. If implementing public health and institutional directives does not cause changes to your protocol/research plan, no further action is required; however, if implementing social distancing practices requires changes to how the study is conducted or changes to the participant experience, amendments must be submitted to Western’s research ethics boards. Please see human ethics-related communications for additional detail.

13. Can I continue to enroll research participants?

  • Enrollment of research participants has not been suspended at Western at this time; however, any Lawson-affiliated studies that do not provide a potentially essential treatment option with a time-limited enrollment should be suspended until further notice.
  • Those considering restarting or initiating any institutional, community-based or field research, must first receive approval from their Dean or designated Department Chair or School Director (Western) or Chair/Chiefs (Lawson).
  • Changes to currently approved studies (e.g., to meet public health directives and/or resume study procedures) must be submitted as amendments for REB approval, including those changes previously submitted as FYIs, if applicable. See Western’s human ethics communications for additional information.
  • The REB will continue to review applications that include face-to-face research activities (e.g., on site at the institution, community-based or field research); however, researchers must follow public health and institutional directives and receive institutional permission prior to beginning or resuming these activities – even if these activities have been approved by the REB.

14. Should I begin/submit new research protocols/studies?

  • Most new research studies involving animal models have been placed on hold. New protocol submissions for animal-based research can still be submitted to the ACC and will be reviewed following regular procedures. Initiation of any newly approved AUPs must not commence until a future date, which will be communicated. For criteria determining what new research studies may proceed by phase, and details of the adjudication process, please consult the COVID-19 page on the ACC’s OWL site.
  • Please refrain from initiating any new human participant research studies that do not adhere to public health guidance related to social distancing.
  • New REB applications for human participant research can be submitted and will be reviewed following regular procedures, noting that the REB is currently prioritizing studies related to COVID-19. Researchers should not conduct research activities involving face-to-face interactions until social distancing is no longer a requirement.
  • Compliance with institutional, provincial and national guidelines — and the safety of participants and staff — supersedes REB approval.
  • If you have any questions about the appropriateness of conducting your research at this time, please consult with your department chair or Associate Dean (Research).

15. Should I contact the sponsor if I am engaged in sponsored research with industry?

Delays to research programs may occur as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important to keep research sponsors apprised of the status of research projects that are subject to agreements with contractual obligations. If you have questions/concerns about existing research agreements, please contact crt@uwo.ca. Our team will help you discuss the status of your research project with the sponsor and find solutions during this uncertain time.

16. If I am engaging in clinical research at the hospital, can we still recruit new participants and/or conduct study-related procedures within the hospital?

Investigators should determine if their studies are, by nature, potentially “essential treatment options” with time-limited enrollment windows. If so, ongoing recruitment is still permitted.

If clinical care procedures are still taking place as scheduled, investigators will need to use their judgement to determine whether research activities are considered to be urgent or essential based on patient safety and continuity of care during this time.

In both instances, you will need to also consult with clinical service units supporting the study to ensure ongoing capacity, as well as area leadership (e.g., administrative Director) to ensure continued support under current work circumstances.

17. How are long-term prospective studies being interrupted?

Our priority is to protect Western’s students, trainees, staff, faculty and research participants. We recognize costs related to interrupting ongoing studies. Long-term prospective studies can continue if they are able to safely respect public health recommendations related to social distancing and self-isolation.

We ask that no new long-term prospective studies are initiated. If you continue with existing protocols, you must maintain the integrity of the data and pay special attention to social distance and hand-washing recommendations. Please contact your Associate Dean (Research) or Western Research with any specific questions.

18. How are REB-approved human participant research studies requiring changes to study-related procedures (e.g., data collection and analysis, recruitment, etc.) being handled?

Human research ethics has developed plans to efficiently and effectively address change requests to REB-approved research in the wake of COVID-19. We continue to communicate changes as they occur.

19. How are institutional signatures for grants and contracts being managed?

Western Research has documented internal procedures to ensure it is able to provide electronic signatures, including through delegated signing authority where required.