As you prepare to move to campus, we want to provide an overview of what to expect when you arrive at the Testing and Check-In Center at Lied Rec to complete the required COVID-19 testing for students moving into the residence halls and campus apartments. We also ask that you start taking steps now to stay healthy and limit your risk of infection.
Steps for Move-In Day
Before going to your residence hall or campus apartment on your scheduled move-in day, you need to go to Lied Rec for testing and to pick up your keys. The testing process will take 15-20 minutes to complete.

There will be signs for each station you may need to visit. If you have a fever or symptoms when you arrive at Lied, we will provide instructions for an alternate testing location.

The Testing and Check-In Center hours of operation can be found here . It is important that you arrive anytime between 15 minutes before your scheduled move-in time to the end of your allotted hour to complete this process. For example, if your scheduled time is 10 to 11 a.m. you can arrive at the testing site anytime between 9:45 and 11 a.m.

Once you leave Lied Rec your full hour for move-in will begin, plus 15 minutes to travel to your residence hall or campus apartment. 

Only students are allowed in Lied Rec and face coverings are required. Please bring your own face covering and your student ID or a driver’s license or passport. If you don’t have a face covering, one will be provided.

Parents or others accompanying you need to wait outside Lied Rec or in their vehicles. ISU Dining will have a hydration and snack station outside and ISU Bookstore will have a mobile store on site. The Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau will also have visitor information, maps and directions available.

After completing the test, you’ll receive your room keys and pick up your student ID if you are a new student (new students will need a driver’s license or passport to pick up their ISUCard). If you have not already sent a suitable photo to the ISUCard office please access this website photo.isucard.iastate.edu and do so before July 24 to avoid delays.

Once you leave Lied Rec you can move into your room at your scheduled time. You do not need to wait for your test results .
Testing Methods and Requirements
The COVID-19 test specimen will be collected using the nasal mid-turbinate method , which is less invasive than the nasopharyngeal method. You will receive an email with your test results. Test results are expected to be reported within 24 hours of sample collection. Please do not call the Thielen Student Health Center for your results.

Testing is required for all students moving into the residence halls and ISU apartments . We cannot accept previous test results. Students who refuse to complete the COVID-19 test will not be allowed to live in the residence halls, Frederiksen Court, Schilletter Village or University Village. If you have questions or concerns, please email  COVID-19@iastate.edu .
What happens if you test positive?
If you test positive, the Department of Residence will help you relocate to a room in a separate building for isolation. A member of the ISU Public Health Team will also contact you to provide health information and resources for self-care and answer any questions.

If a student moving into a campus apartment tests positive at move-in, they will isolate in their apartment. ISU’s Public Health Team will provide guidance to limit exposure to roommates. If possible, students living in apartments may consider completing the isolation period at home and then return to campus.

Due to space limitations, quarantine and isolation housing is only available for students living in the residence halls. More students access shared spaces (restrooms, showers, etc.) in residence halls than apartments, which is why positive cases in the residence halls will be moved to another area for isolation.
Before You Arrive: Take Pre-Test Questionnaire
As you start thinking about what to pack, also consider how you can limit your exposure to COVID-19 right now. Avoid large gatherings, wear a face covering, maintain physical distancing, wash your hands and stay home if you’re sick.

Before moving to campus, you need to complete this pre-test questionnaire . Once completed, you will receive an email confirmation that you need to bring to Lied Rec for testing. The questionnaire will cover the following questions:

  1. Do you have a medical condition that puts you at higher risk for COVID-19? If so, please call 515-294-5801 to make an appointment to be tested at Thielen Student Health Center (TSHC).
  2. If you answer “yes” to any of the following, do not come to campus. Email the Department of Residence housing@iastate.edu to schedule a new move-in time.
  • Are you waiting for results from a COVID-19 conducted prior to coming to campus?
  • In the last 14 days, have you had contact with a person who has COVID-19?
  • Are you currently experiencing a fever, cough, diarrhea or sore throat?
  • In the last 14 days, have you traveled outside the U.S. (including cruises)?
If you are experiencing symptoms, please contact your doctor’s office before coming to campus. If you have traveled outside of the U.S., you need to self-quarantine for 14 days. If you are an international student coming from outside the U.S., please contact the International Students and Scholars Office isso@iastate.edu for help arranging temporary housing.
Develop an Emergency Plan
The Department of Residence has reserved space for students who need to isolate because of a positive COVID-19 test result and students who need to quarantine because of known exposure to a positive case of COVID-19 (this will be determined through contact tracing conducted by ISU’s Public Health Team). Quarantine and isolation housing is only provided to students living in the residence halls. Students living in campus apartments will isolate or quarantine in their apartment.

It is important that you and your family have an emergency health plan in place should you test positive for COVID-19. While on-campus housing is available, you may decide you want to return home. The Department of Residence will help you with this process, but we strongly encourage you to discuss this with your family prior to move-in to have a plan in place.

Be sure that your local address, cell phone number and emergency contact information is up to date in AccessPlus.
Cyclones Care
Navigating the return to campus takes the cooperation of all Cyclones. Please do your part to show Cyclones Care and create a healthy campus this fall. For information and updates related to COVID-19, we encourage to regularly check the COVID-19 webpage

We're excited to welcome you back to campus and look forward to being part of your Iowa State adventure! We hope you are doing well and we'll see you soon.


Erin Baldwin, Interim Senior VP for Student Affairs and Director Thielen Student Health Center
Kristen Obbink, ISU COVID-19 Public Health Coordinator
Pete Englin, Associate Vice President for Campus Life/Director of Residence
Iowa State University