COVID-19 Research Facility Guidance

Syracuse University research facilities should comply with masking restrictions as designated by COVID Level. Visit the University Stay Safe webpage for more information on our status.

Human Subjects Research

The Office of Research Integrity and Protections/Institutional Review Board, in collaboration with the Office of Research, has developed Resuming Face-to-Face Human Participant Research Guidance. This document incorporates state, local and institutional policies regarding COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines for in-person participant research taking place on campus, in the community, in the United States and internationally.

***Updated July 16, 2021

The return to face-to-face research documents ARE required when:

    • Social distancing and masking cannot be maintained with unvaccinated individuals.
    • A researcher will travel internationally to conduct in-person research.

The return to face-to-face research documents are NOT required when:

      • The research will only be conducted with vaccinated individuals.
        • Researchers should ask for proof of vaccination and document the date of last vaccination in their research records. If the participant does not provide proof, the researcher should follow procedures for unvaccinated individuals.
      • Unvaccinated individuals will wear masks and follow a social distancing plan. 

For more information, please see the full Resuming Face-to-Face Human Participant Research Guidance.

Apply via the Syracuse University Application Portal

As noted in the July 14, 2021 COVID Update, effective July 19, 2021, the University will adapt its interim travel safety policy to allow non-essential domestic travel. All those proposing domestic travel for University business purposes (faculty, staff or student) may do so without constraint; domestic travelers do not need to submit to the Office of Research’s travel approval process. All travelers must be in compliance with the University’s vaccination policy. For those with approved exemptions from the COVID-19 vaccination, the University requires strict adherence to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for travelers. Please note that all usual approval processes for the purposes of responsible budget management should be followed.

International travel remains for essential purposes only. Essential international research travel is defined as travel required to:

  • preserve the safety of a research subject and cannot be postponed; or
  • preserve the continuity and results of a research activity and cannot be postponed.

Travel for Face-to-Face Human Participant Research is allowable. However, any IRB approvals and a Return to Face-To-Face Research Plan must be submitted and approved before a travel request will be approved.

Faculty, researchers, postdoctoral scholars and students with questions about whether specific proposed travel is essential, or those seeking approval to engage in essential international travel, should confer first with their department chairs. If your chair believes the travel qualifies as essential, please complete this application. 

Chairs and then Associate Deans of Research will make a recommendation as to the essential nature of the travel request. This recommendation will then be routed to the interim vice president for research (VPR). 

Please allow at least 10 business days for this approval process for international travel. 

Any faculty member, researcher, postdoctoral scholar or student whose essential travel is approved is then required to register that travel on the University travel registry system.

  • For International Faculty/Staff Business Travel: International travel for non-essential University business (e.g., conferences) remains prohibited. Request to travel for essential purposes should follow the procedures provided by Human Resources.
  • International Student Organization Travel: Requests made by students to travel internationally as part of their participation in a registered student organization should be directed to Rob Hradsky in the Office of the Vice President for the Student Experience at
  • For Academic Purposes: International academic travel may only be deemed essential if, in the judgment of the dean of the school or college, the activity is essential to a designated course of study and no reasonable alternative exists that does not involve international travel.

Travelers should review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines for international travelers prior to any travel.

Please be reminded that any student, faculty or staff member approved to travel must register with the University’s travel registry. Questions may be directed to Seth Tucker in the Office of Global Safety and Support at or 315.443.1968.

Apply via the Syracuse University Application Portal

Visiting Scholars Guidance

As part of the numerous health and safety precation efforts undertaken by Syracuse University since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, University researchers and administrators seeking to host a visiting scholar must complete a Visiting Scholar Request. Visiting scholars are those who are coming to Syracuse University campus from outside of the Central New York region for the purpose of long-term academic research, and will remain on campus for longer than one week. Please visit the Visiting Scholar Request Guidance webpage for more information.