Fall 2021 COVID-19 policies, summarized

MIT community members must remain in compliance with testing and attestations

Campus Access and Visitors

To access campus, all faculty, students, and staff must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have an exemption. Vaccination status can be reported at

Community members on COVID Pass must be compliant with vaccination, twice weekly testing, and daily attestation requirements to access campus buildings.

Students who are not in compliance will still be able to access their residence halls.

Visitors may be authorized to access campus if they are escorted by a COVID Pass holder, via Tim Tickets (MIT’s new visitor pass system), or if they are on COVID Pass.

Visitors and event attendees accessing campus and MIT-sponsored events via the Tim Tickets System must provide contact tracing information and attest to being fully vaccinated or having a medical or religious reason for exemption. The Tim Tickets functionality will be available mid-September.

All other visitors are strongly encouraged to receive a COVID vaccine. Visitors are not required to have a negative test to come on campus.

The general public is able to access MIT’s outdoor spaces and select indoor spaces: the first floors of the Stratton Student Center, Stata Center, and Koch Institute.


All campus residents — and students not residing on campus — must take COVID tests twice a week, and must adhere to either a Monday-Thursday or Tuesday-Friday testing schedule. Other individuals accessing campus buildings must test at least once per week, and are encouraged to test on Wednesdays, the lightest testing day. 

Testing will be managed through COVID Pass, and testing kits are currently available for pickup on weekdays at the Johnson Athletic Center, the MIT Medical atrium, the Stata Center, and Lobby 7. 

Social distancing and face coverings

When outdoors, unvaccinated individuals not wearing a face covering should maintain three feet of distance between themselves and others. 

Face coverings are required in all MIT buildings for all individuals, irrespective of vaccination status. Face coverings may be removed when alone in a fully enclosed space or when actively eating or drinking indoors. Students living in MIT Housing or FSILGs may remove face coverings in their private rooms or suite common rooms while the door is closed. When speaking to a group, the speaker (if vaccinated) may remove their mask while speaking, provided all other group members are masked. In a given space, only one person may be unmasked at a time. 

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts requires face coverings to be worn in designated spaces on the MIT campus. 

Face coverings are not required outdoors for vaccinated individuals. 


Eating indoors is permitted in all campus buildings. Individuals are strongly encouraged to limit group size and eating time and to maintain extra distance when eating indoors. Capacity should be reduced in spaces with active dining to allow for physical distancing. 

MIT encourages dining outdoors when possible.

When to quarantine

A fully vaccinated individual experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should isolate themselves and be clinically evaluated and tested for COVID.

Most fully vaccinated people without COVID-like symptoms do not need to quarantine, be restricted from work, or be tested if exposed to someone with COVID-19, as their risk of infection is low. However, they should still monitor for symptoms of COVID for two weeks following exposure.

Unvaccinated individuals who are close contacts are required to quarantine for 10 days and monitor themselves for symptoms and check their temperature daily for 14 days. These individuals do not need to test unless symptoms develop.

At the end of the 10-day quarantine period, if the individual has remained asymptomatic, they will be able to use COVID Pass again and must immediately be tested. 


Internal events for MIT departments, labs, centers, faculty, and student organizations may be held on campus. Events by external groups may also be allowed if sponsored by recognized student groups or faculty and staff with departmental approval.

Event attendees not in COVID Pass must check in at the event venue or be escorted by a COVID Pass holder. Event organizers must collect contact information for all indoor event attendees and retain the information for 14 days after the event for contact tracing purposes.

Attendees at events must be in line with all other Institute eating, face covering, and social distancing policies.


A COVID-19 vaccination is required for all MIT-affiliated travel, domestic and international, with the exception of local travel (travel within Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont). All MIT-related travel must be registered in COVID Travel; individuals are encouraged to register personal travel. This requirement applies to undergraduate and graduate students, staff, faculty, and postdocs. 

MIT employees who have been granted a remote work exemption from the vaccination requirement are not eligible for MIT-related travel. 

Detailed information about any of these policies can be found at MIT Now.