Office of Research & Sponsored Programs

University Guidance on Research at UNI During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Guidance to Researchers at UNI

Due to the rapidly changing situation and recent impacts on the UNI campus community, the following guidance is being offered to faculty, staff, and student researchers to assist in addressing the disruptions caused by COVID-19 virus and supporting compliance with University, state, and federal guidance and requirements for operations during the COVID-19 outbreak:


Next Steps for Researchers

Currently, university guidelines require that all teaching activities take place in virtual settings and that faculty, staff, and students avoid being on campus as much as possible. Researchers should consider the possibility that this disruption to campus activities may continue for months to come and make contingency plans accordingly. In addition, preparations and a contingency plan must be developed in the event that the campus is ordered to shut down entirely, where no one other than critical personnel are allowed to physically go on campus. These guidelines are being offered to assist you in developing and implementing plans for both circumstances. In the event of a campus shutdown, recommendations in the above guidance document (things that “should” be done) will become requirements.

All faculty and staff should also immediately begin contingency planning to prepare for curtailing all but the most essential on-campus research and creative activities over a longer term. Three forms have been developed for use by lead researchers and/or lab managers:

  • 1) Lab Shutdown Checklist (EXCEL) – An optional checklist to assist you in preparing to shut down as well as in actually implementing a shut-down plan;

  • 2) Research-Lab Continuity Request Form (DOC) – All faculty/researchers who will need on campus access to their laboratories (e.g., in order to maintain critical research materials or care for animals), must submit the Research/Lab Continuity Request Form to their department head and dean no later than Thursday, March 26, 2020 by 5:00 pm.

  • 3) Lone Worker Guidelines for Laboratory Personnel (DOC) – Risk Management in collaboration with the Associate Vice President for Research and Innovation created this guidance document to assist individuals in developing appropriate procedures when finding themselves working alone in laboratories in pursuit of research.