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FAQs on COVID-19 Related Policies and Guidelines

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Main /

The FAQs reflect NUS policies and guidelines. We will continue to update and add to these FAQs as and when there are new advisories and measures. In addition to the University-wide information on OSHE FAQs, you should also read up your Hostel, Faculty or School-specific FAQs for guidance.

Co-Curricular Activities (CCA)

Q1. If my classes are all online, am I able to head back to campus for CCAs?

Yes, with reference to Provost’s circular on the 9 October 2020, students are allowed to return to campus on any day that you have at least one class (lectures, tutorials, labs, seminars, workshops, etc.), with fewer than 50 students, regardless of the mode of teaching (online, face-to-face, hybrid). As long as you are permitted to return to campus, you will be permitted to conduct or attend face-to-face CCAs.         

Q2.  What are the types of volunteering work that can be conducted outside of campus?

Regular volunteering work which includes house to house visits, giving out food, medical support, etc. can be conducted so long as it is permissible by the beneficiary. All safe-distancing measures and CCA guidelines apply when conducting CCAs outside of campus (i.e.: zoning, 5 pax per group, not more than 50 students, etc.)

Q3. Does zoning applies when conducting meetings/trainings/activities outside of campus?
Yes, all activities conducted outside of campus are restricted to zoning regulations imposed by the NUS management. Activities have to be conducted in groups of 5, with not more than 50 pax. Students are only allowed to interact with students from the same zone and group. Intermingling amongst groups are not allowed. It is recommended that the student group schedule different locations/timings for different zones.

Q4. For speech and drama practices, the total number of pax allowed in a room is 5. Is the instructor included or excluded in the 5 pax per room rule? 

The instructor if present is included in the 5 pax per room. Your instructor would have to be masked up at all times and social distancing has to be practised. If your instructor is not from NUS, s/he has to be tagged to a zone and s/he can only provide face-to-face training for students from the same zone. 

Q5. If I am practising singing in an open space, can I practise in groups of 5?

Yes, you may. However, you will have to be masked up at all times, maintain 1m apart from each other and 2m apart from each group. You are only allowed to practise with students from the same zone too.

Q6: Phase 3 of Singapore’s reopening could occur by year-end, would it be possible to hold a physical event on the university campus in 2021?
Student Organisations can currently hold physical event on campus subject to the current CCA guidelines, safe management measures and zoning etc. With regard to Phase 3, the University will continue to take lead from the Ministry of Education as well as the NUS Office of Safety, Health and Environment. Once more information on how activities can be conducted on campus are made available, OSA will update all student organisations on how CCAs can be resumed under Phase 3.

Updated as at 20 October 2020

Travel Advisory & Border Control Measures

Q. I plan to return to Singapore next semester. Is there anything I need to take note of in light of the COVID-19 situation?

On your home country's end:
Please check on your home country’s movement control or border restrictions to determine if you can return.

On Singapore's end:
With effect from 29 March 2020, 2359 hours, all foreigners holding Student’s Pass (STP) or In-Principle Approval for STP (STP-IPA) who are planning to enter Singapore must first obtain an Entry Approval from the Ministry of Education before they commence their journey to Singapore.

NUS will apply for your Entry Approval on your behalf, based on your travel information made in the Overseas Travel Declaration (OTD) system. It is thus important that you declare your overseas travel plans promptly and amend any changes in the system immediately so that it reflects your latest travel plans. This includes cancellation of your travel plans.

DO NOT proceed with your trip to Singapore unless you have received the approval letter of entry (via your NUS email account). 

Refer to this document for full details.

Q. Do I need to serve a 14-day Stay Home Notice (SHN) when I arrive in Singapore?
Since 21 March 2020, it is mandatory for all incoming travellers, including Singapore Citizens (SCs), Permanent Residents (PRs) and Long-Term Pass holders (including STP and STP-IPA holders) to serve the 14-day SHN. For FAQs on SHN-related matters, please refer to the Ministry of Health’s FAQ page at and contact them directly if you need further clarification.
Q. How can I cancel my Student’s Pass in order to continue staying in Singapore / apply for a Short Term Visit Pass?

In view of the limited counter services at ICA building, NUS Registrar's Office will be assisting undergrad and graduate international students to do e-cancellation of their Student's Pass. Complete the Request for Cancellation of Student’s Pass form and send it to along with a copy of a valid travel document (i.e. passport) and Student’s Pass. Allow three working days and expect to receive a Short Term Visit Pass (STVP) of up to 89 days to your NUS email account within a week of submitting the duly completed form. For more details, contact the Registrar’s Office.

For full list, visit OSHE FAQs


Campus Housing

Q. Can I serve my 14-day Stay Home Notice (SHN) on campus?

Ministry of Education (MOE) is centrally allocating students. You may or may not be allocated to serve your SHN on campus.
In other words, NUS hostels may receive non-NUS students serving SHN in our hostels and NUS students may serve SHN in non-NUS run hostels. 

For FAQs on SHN-related matters, please refer to the Ministry of Health’s FAQ page at and contact them directly if you need further clarification.

Safe Distancing Measures in Halls, Residential Colleges, and Residences

Q. Are students allowed to chat at the common areas (e.g. kitchen, corridor, lobby, vending machines)?
Interaction in common areas that is transient and that follows safe distancing guidelines (maintain a 2m distance, for no more than a few minutes) is acceptable. Students should not gather to chat or socialise or for any other purpose - this includes meeting in the common areas, studying in areas that have not been designated for studying, and exercising indoors or outdoors together.
Q. Are students allowed to use the toilet or shower areas at the same time?
Yes, shared toilets and shower areas can be used in the usual way. Students are to leave once they have finished using these areas.
Q. If a study area has been allocated to me, can I use another study area or allow another student to use mine?
No, you must use only the study area that has been allocated to you if that is practiced in the hostel you are staying in. This is to reduce risk of transmission of the virus. Similarly, do not allow another student to use your study area.
Q. If I fall ill during the CB period and have a home outside campus, can I go home?
Yes, if you fall ill during the CB period you can choose to check-out and go home. If your medical condition prevents you from completing the check-out procedures, you will be allowed, on an exceptional basis, to go home and return after the CB period to check out.
Q. Can I go home without checking out during the Circuit Breaker period, and return to pick up my belongings?
If you choose to go home, during the CB period, you will not be allowed to return to the hostel. You can return to the hostel after the CB period to check-out.
Q. How does the hostel ensure residents comply with the guidelines?
Staff and security personnel will step up checks at common corridors and facilities. Any non-compliance of the safe distancing guidelines would be dealt with in accordance to the disciplinary framework.
Q. What happens to residents who do not comply with these guidelines?  
The University has a responsibility for the welfare of its students and will take disciplinary action against those in campus residences who do not comply with these guidelines. The sanctions framework for non-compliance is shown below. Students who repeatedly or egregiously breach the rules may also be referred to the Board of Discipline.





  • 9 demerit points


  • 9 demerit points above the 9 for the first offence

  • Termination of hostel housing agreement

For full list, visit here.


Q. Can we still proceed with Orientation?

With the increasing number of COVID-19 cases globally and the enhanced safety measures by the Multi-Ministry Task Force, the Freshman Orientation Programme (FOPs) between 1 June to 7 August will be conducted online. Fine out more about e-Orientation here

New S/U Policy for Semester 2, AY2019/20 

Q. Does the additional 10 S/U MCs apply to the following modules: 

• Modules that have pre-requisites 
• Level-3000/4000/5000 (e.g., modules that were not SU-able) 
• Core Modules 
• Specialization Modules 
• Modules taken in place of Honours Thesis or FYP 
• Independent Study Modules 

Yes, the additional 10MC of S/U, as well as your carried-forward S/U MC (i.e., existing S/U balance from the Grade-free Scheme) can be applied to all of the above modules taken this semester only, except for final year projects/ honours theses/ honours projects/ dissertation and such. The list of modules excluded from the S/U option can be found here

Q. The circular states "final year projects, Honours Theses and equivalent modules" but I am unsure of what “equivalent modules” mean. 
The “equivalent modules” are referring to Final Year Project/Honours Thesis-type of modules with other possible terminologies like Dissertation, Honours Project, Capstone Project. The list of modules excluded from the S/U option can be found here

For full list, go to student portal.


Temperature Declaration

Q. Can NUS give out free thermometers to all students? While OSA has recently issued some thermometers, they are wiped out almost immediately. Thermometers that were issued during Orientation are no longer functional. Students who do not have thermometers often go to the designated temperature taking point across campuses to do so, and this option may not be available to on weekends or when we are off-campus.

Here are various options to getting a hold of a thermometer:

  1. Purchase one from a pharmacy as most of them would have restocked their supplies
  2. Request one from your Faculty Dean’s Office;
  3. For hostellites, inform your Masters, some stock is available.

Q. I am an exchange student and have gone back to my home country.I am still on the programme and would like to view and receive my results, am I exempted? / I am serving my internship and taking my temperature at my workplace, am I exempted? / I am on medical or personal LOA, am I exempted?

You would have met the compliance rate if you have declared at least 10 times a week (Monday to Sunday) OR made at least one declaration a day.

If you have legitimate reasons why you should be exempted from making daily temperature declarations, submit your exemption request on the Temperature Declaration page and choose a relevant option in the drop-down menu. We want our students to be healthy, not just on weekdays or when they are on-campus. This close monitoring is essential so that if they have fever, they seek treatment immediately.  

How to submit an exemption request:

Step 1:temp declaration 1
Step 2: 

temp declaration 2


Q. Compliance and enforcement will be increasingly difficult in the long run. My worry is that many students will try and "cheat" their way out of the system and this would certainly go against the central purpose of temperature.

This is a real problem and we will do whatever it takes to keep the NUS community safe. The sanctions framework is one such solution. 
Q. Can NUS reset my past temperature declaration record? When will the sanctions be implemented?
 We know that the record in the past is dismal, and we will start calculating the rate of compliance on a ‘clean slate’. Our first step is to ensure the contents of the circular be clearly understood by students. Next, we will create a new normal and get everyone onboard to take and record their temperature. We will send reminders during this process. After a period of time, we will implement the sanctions.

Q. Can there be alternatives instead of sanctions for non-compliance? Compliance should be made as easy as possible and punishment should focus on those that pose a deliberate risk to the NUS community. Here are some options to consider:

  • Give out thermometers to all students or making them readily available for purchase at low cost;
  • Continue to send periodic reminders to all students;
  • Have centralised temperature screenings at designated entry points;
  • Include an option to declare "did not go to campus facilities/interact with other NUS students" where temperature reporting would not be necessary for that day (and punishments would apply for false declarations here)
  • Incentivise (rather than punish) compliance with the temperature taking regime.
Unfortunately our statistics show that only a small percentage of NUS students take and record their temperature regularly. Despite sending a personalised reminder email to each and every student to let him/her know his/her rate of compliance, we did not see an uptick in the compliance rate. We therefore need to take tougher measures. We have considered these alternatives very carefully – the alternatives you have proposed will be made available, except incentivisation.
Answers by Prof Florence Ling, Vice Provost (Student Life). This FAQ first appeared on DOS Update #25.

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