COVID-19 Policy
August 24, 2020
COVID Mask

The following policy will help employees and students to remain safe as we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. Infectious diseases, such as COVID-19, can have a huge impact on you and on those that work and study around you. In an effort to reduce that impact we will be strictly following the guidance and policies of the university and of the government. University and government (both State and County) policies are continually being updated, and those policies and requirements will always supersede the department policy outlined below. We will do our best to keep this document current, but intentionally do not exhaustively repeat the university/government policies here.

You have primary responsibility for protecting your well-being; don’t put yourself in a situation that is unsafe, especially if you are part of a risk group. If you are not at a high risk yourself, please show courtesy toward others who may be at greater risk, especially since you can spread the disease while being asymptomatic.

Department of Computer Science

August 24, 2020


Please refer to https://www.byu.edu/coronavirus/ for the latest university information, policies, and reference to other relevant sites. Some of the most basic of these policies are included below in the Guidelines for Everyone section.

Guidelines for Everyone

  • Before the start of the semester, everyone in the campus community is required to watch this video and take the quiz that follows. Everyone is also required to use the Healthy Together App as of the 1st day of the Fall Semester (August 31st).
  • Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face.
  • Wear a face mask that covers your nose and mouth in all classrooms and buildings. Everyone is required to wear a mask except in select circumstances outlined on the University face-covering page.
  • Social distance in all settings, including off campus; be sure to wear a face mask whenever social distancing is not possible.
  • Used non-disposable face masks should be cleaned regularly.
  • When participating in meetings, hold them electronically whenever possible. When equipment problems occur, please submit a ticket through https://support.cs.byu.edu/ instead of entering the CSR office in person.
  • Hand sanitizer and disinfectants are available on each floor of the building. Cleaning supplies and instructions will be provided for both open labs and research labs.
  • Due to privacy concerns, faculty and staff of the Computer Science Department will not confirm or deny positive COVID-19 cases.

Guidelines for Teaching/Classrooms (Students/TAs/Faculty)

  • Every classroom should have a copy of this poster reminding all of us how to safely participate in in-person classes.
  • Face masks are required in classrooms -- Instructors will ask students to leave an in-person class if they are not wearing a face mask. Instructors will not proceed with class unless everyone is safe.
  • Teaching Assistants will provide assistance through online platforms like Zoom, not in person.
  • Students should use their personal laptops for all of their work unless they require resources only available on a lab machine.
  • In cases where students are using CS department computers (e.g. in all labs), students are required to clean the workstation and area before using it (supplies are provided in all labs, see cleaning instructions).

Guidelines for Research Laboratories (Students/Faculty)

  • Each department research lab should have a copy of this sign posted on the door.
  • Students must wear face masks if others are present in the lab.
  • Used face masks should not be stored in labs.
  • Students should sanitize their keyboard/mouse/workspace surfaces each time they enter the lab.
  • The faculty supervisor can approve food and drink for their lab.

Guidelines for Advising and other Assistance (Advisors/Staff/Students)

  • Until further notice, all advising will be done remotely through online platforms like Zoom. Undergraduate students are invited to contact Lynnette Nelson (lnelson@cs.byu.edu) for assistance. Graduate students are invited to contact Jen Bonnett (jen@cs.byu.edu) for assistance.
  • For other matters, students are invited to contact the CS Department Office, either by email (csoffice@cs.byu.edu), or by phone (801-422-3027). There are in-person hours (TBD), but in-person contact should be avoided unless otherwise impossible.

What if I feel unwell? What if someone in my lab/office/class/etc. may have COVID-19??

First, read the BYU COVID-19 Case Management page. With existing cases of COVID-19 on campus already, and likely more cases in the future, we feel it is important to make clear what we should do when someone working in our labs or offices becomes ill.

  1. Stay home if you feel unwell. Anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, shortness of breath, and/or a new persistent cough) should not come to campus (or should immediately leave) and should be tested as soon as possible. The BYU Health Center performs tests, accepts most insurance, and is relatively inexpensive.
  2. Anyone experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should immediately inform their supervisor (office supervisor or faculty member) and should inform the supervisor of test results as soon as they are available.
  3. Labs/offices can remain open while waiting for test results as long as no one else experiences symptoms, but again masks and frequent hand washing are essential. If there is any evidence of spread, the lab/office should close and item 7 below should be followed.
  4. In the case of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis, BYU students and employees attending classes or working on campus are required to report a positive diagnosis of COVID-19 to BYU by completing the COVID-19 Self Reporting Form: https://www.byu.edu/coronavirus/covid-19-screening.
  5. The infected person should quarantine for at least 14 days from the onset of symptoms unless a medical professional advises otherwise.
  6. All lab/office mates and anyone else that had prolonged interaction with the infected individual should be tested for COVID-19.
  7. The lab/office of the infected person is closed and lab/office mates should quarantine until negative test results are received or 14 days have passed since interaction with the infected person.
  8. Lab/office mates may return to work after testing negative, or after 14 days have elapsed since interaction with the infected person.
  9. After thorough cleaning, the lab/office can reopen for people who have tested negative or passed the 14 day period.

Recommended for CS Dept. Syllabi

Infectious diseases, such as COVID 19, can have a huge impact on you and on those who work and study around you. In an effort to reduce that impact we will be strictly following the guidance and policies of the university and of the state. These policies change from time to time so we will not repeat them here.

Please refer to https://www.byu.edu/coronavirus/ for the latest university information, policies, and reference to other relevant sites, but the most basic of the policies are:

  • Stay home if you feel unwell, report as described on the BYU covid page.
  • Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face.
  • Wear a face mask that covers your nose and mouth.
  • Social distance.
  • Quarantine is required for those who have had direct close contact with a confirmed case.
  • Isolation is required for those who have been confirmed to have COVID-19.
  • Report illness as described on the university site linked above.

You have primary responsibility for protecting your well-being, don’t put yourself in a situation that is unsafe, especially if you (or others you live with) are part of a risk group.

The University is very serious about everyone in the campus community following the campus policies regarding COVID-19; respecting others and their safety is part of the University Honor Code. Students unwilling to comply with these policies will not receive course credit and will be reported to the Honor Code office. Repeated refusal to comply may even result in dismissal from the University.

FAQ

  • Q: Do I need to wear a mask if I’m in an enclosed lab space by myself?
    • A: Any time there are others present, you must wear a mask.
  • Q: Is a face shield a valid replacement for a face mask?
    • A: No, as stated by both BYU guidelines and CDC guidelines: A face shield may be worn with a face mask but not in place of one.
  • Q: What if it is impossible for Teaching Assistants and students to work remotely?
    • A: If that is impossible, TAs and students should maintain proper social distancing and sanitation. Any such meetings should be less than 15 minutes. Keyboards and surfaces should be cleaned between users.
  • Q: What’s the difference between isolation and quarantine?
    • A: The campus welcome back video (that everyone in the campus community was required to watch) describes the difference well. Isolation is required for those who have been confirmed to have COVID-19. Quarantine is for those who have had direct close contact with a confirmed case, but have not been confirmed to have COVID-19 themselves.

If you notice errors or inconsistencies, please contact Mark Clement <mark_clement@byu.edu>