Frequently asked questions





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Return to campus, testing system Q&A

Our Track & Trace team has created the following Q&A to let you know what to expect from our testing system, when you return to campus.

Why should I be tested when I don’t have symptoms?

The test is designed to detect the level of virus in individuals who do not experience or show any symptoms (they are asymptomatic), but who could still be infectious and pass the virus to others. By taking part, you will help to stop the spread of the virus, protect other people and save lives.

Should I be tested before I return to campus?

For the safety of our community, please arrange a Lateral Flow Test before returning to campus for the start of the Spring Term. The government’s online booking form will allow you to locate your nearest community testing centre.

What should I do if I don’t live in the UK?

If you are travelling from any country (other than Ireland) you will need to arrange to isolate for 10 days on arrival in the UK and accept all the conditions which will be set out by the government.

If you are travelling from a red list country you will need to book in at a quarantine hotel.

How many tests will I require per week, once I’m on campus?

You will be required to book two COVID-19 tests per week, three days apart.

How long will this be required?

This will be until the end of the academic year. Then, during the summer months, home testing will be available for you. Further information regarding home testing, including details of when this will be available, will follow soon.

Why is the University College running this testing?

As a University College, we are keen to do everything we can to support the local, national and international effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19, working in partnership with the Department for Health and Social Care, and Public Health England.

What if I have had my COVID-19 vaccine?

If you have been vaccinated (irrelevant of whether you have received one or two vaccines), you should continue to attend twice weekly testing at the onsite test centre. You can still get COVID-19 and pass on the virus.

What happens if the test is positive?

If you have tested positive as part of the mass testing programme, you need to self-isolate for 10 days. The 10 days includes the day of your test. Those in your household will also need to isolate.

If you are self-isolating can you book a COVID-19 test?

No, because a student or staff member who is self-isolating must follow the current guidance to remain at home for the allocated period. Regardless of the result of a test, you would still be required to isolate for the duration.

Do I need to get tested if I have already had COVID-19?

If someone has recently (within 90 days) tested positive for COVID-19, they are likely to have developed some immunity, and therefore a repeat Lateral Flow Test is unlikely to be necessary within this period.

What happens if I do not receive my test result?

The government guidance is that you should receive your result within the hour. If you do not receive it within 24 hours please email and they will be able to confirm your result.

Is the test safe?

Lateral Flow Tests are safe and the results are trusted. These tests have undergone rigorous testing and evaluation including at Public Health England’s research laboratories to ensure they are verified for use.

Will I need a PCR test if I have a positive result on my Lateral Flow Test?

Yes, if you have a positive test result from a Lateral Flow Test you will need to take a PCR test to confirm the results. This is due to the low amount of COVID-19 in our population at the moment and to avoid any false positives.

From the PCR test, the lab can also detect the variant of COVID-19 that you have.

You will still need to isolate until your PCR test is confirmed.

Thank you for helping us to keep our community safe. Please email any questions to


WUC Track & Trace Team