We will continue to update our testing policies as new medical guidance from the RI Department of Health or other professional agencies emerges. RISD will work with private, nonprofit agency the Broad Institute (affiliated with MIT and Harvard), to conduct initial and ongoing campus population surveillance testing for COVID-19. Learn more on FDA.GOV about testing terms and types of tests.

Testing FAQs

Testing Dashboard

Process for Positive Cases

Baseline Arrival Testing

All RISD community members living or working on campus during the fall semester were required to be tested at the beginning of the fall semester. Any community member who did not receive a COVID-19 test between August 19–September 16 no longer has access to RISD buildings and exterior spaces for the duration of the fall semester and RISD ID cards have been deactivated.

Surveillance Testing

RISD will test 50 percent of the on-campus population every week. This will allow us to test high risk members of the population regularly in addition to randomized samples to monitor the incidence of the virus on campus and follow early indications of shifts in public health trends. The cost of this test will be covered by RISD. Test results will be provided to the individuals tested and to RISD. Those undergoing surveillance testing do NOT need to quarantine while awaiting results. Employees who participate in baseline arrival testing will become part of the surveillance testing pool.

Individuals currently experiencing symptoms should NOT stand in line for surveillance testing and should instead go directly to the respiratory clinic (students) or their primary care physician (employees).

Walk-up or drive-in
Location: Lawn of Thompson House, 63 Angell Street
Bring a valid ID (RISD ID, driver’s license, or passport)
Bring the signed consent form, if possible.

A tent is located between Thompson House and Larned House. Please do not ring the doorbell of Thompson House.

Those electing to drive up can proceed to the Fones Lot.

Testing Procedure

The test procedure will involve a self-collected swab of the “anterior nares” (the inside of the nostril tip), with a medical provider present in case of any questions or concerns. Watch an instructional video on the self-collection process and review the written process before your testing appointment.

Selection and Scheduling

Those who participated in the baseline arrival testing will form the pool for surveillance testing. RISD will test students, faculty and staff identified as having regular close contact with others on a weekly basis in addition to a randomized sample of the general on-campus population. Individuals identified for surveillance testing will receive notification by email with an appointed timeframe for self-administered testing as described above.

Test Results

Test results will be provided to RISD and to individuals tested within 24 hours. Negative results will come via email from CareEvolve@lknotification.com. Positive results will be communicated by phone from a clinician.

Off-campus testing

Employees who live outside a 75 miles radius of campus will be reimbursed up to $50 if they choose to receive a test off-campus. Tests must be taken during the surveillance period for which the individual was selected.

Employee results from tests completed offsite must be uploaded via a secure Dropbox link, which can be found here (sign-in using RISD email address and password is required to access the doc.) Please do not send your results via email as they contain confidential information.

Diagnostic Testing

All community members who are symptomatic must let the school know and arrange for a diagnostic test by contacting Student Health Services or their health care provider.


Student Health Services has established a new and fully-staffed campus respiratory clinic in Thompson House for evaluation and testing of COVID-19 for students.


Employees who have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to the virus should contact their primary care provider and their supervisor as well as get tested at a Rhode Island state testing site closest to them.

Health Insurance

Diagnostic testing for COVID-19 will be covered by the RISD student health insurance policy and the RISD employee health insurance policy at approved locations. Hospitalization and treatment for COVID-19 is covered like any standard medical treatment. RISD will cover the cost of testing upon arrival and surveillance testing.

RISD will make options available to its on-campus faculty and staff for obtaining COVID-19 testing when employees do not have health insurance available to cover the cost of testing.