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Faculty and Staff Testing

With an expected higher number of faculty and staff working onsite during the Spring Term, Northwestern’s asymptomatic testing plans for faculty and staff have been expanded.

As a reminder, if you have any symptoms, or need to be tested because of contact tracing, you must follow the Symptomatic Testing instructions outlined in the second tab.

Voluntary Testing with Color or Abbott

Faculty and staff who work on campus most days are encouraged to participate in regular testing, especially if they:

  • Have regular in-person interaction with students
  • Have regular in-person interaction with the public
  • Work in close settings, like research labs or shared offices, with other faculty and staff

For those faculty and staff only occasionally working on campus, or who only want testing when it is convenient to them, infrequent testing is also acceptable.

Faculty and staff can complete one Color test per week – we ask that you limit any Color testing to once per week.

Faculty and staff may complete as many Abbott rapid antigen tests per week as they would like.

Completing Your Abbott Rapid Antigen Test

Please see the details on the Abbott Rapid Antigen Testing website for information about rapid antigen testing and for instructions on how to:

  • Download the Abbott NAVICA app;
  • Confirm your Northwestern email address; and
  • Connect to Northwestern via the NAVICA app to ensure your results are shared with Northwestern for case management purposes

Once you’ve activated your NAVICA app and connected to NU on the app, you are ready to test. All Abbott rapid antigen testing occurs at the Jacobs Center in Evanston, using the south entrance (Deering Meadow), or 345 E. Superior Street in Chicago. No appointment is needed for rapid antigen testing.

Completing Your Color Test

Please see the details on the Color Testing Website for information about Color and how to:

  • Activate your Color account
  • Complete your weekly Color test
  • Receive your test results

Once you’ve activated your Color account, your weekly testing should go smoothly. Information about where to complete your Color test is available on the Color testing site.  No appointment is needed for Color testing.

Random Sampling

The Random Sampling testing program was discontinued given its voluntary nature and overlap with other testing options for faculty and staff. 


It is very important that faculty and staff who have COVID-19 symptoms or who have been identified as being exposed to COVID-19 through contact tracing follow the processes outlined below.  

  • Update your SymptomTracker immediately, which will turn your badge red and wait for Case Management to reach out
  • Please Note:  please allow 2-6 hours for Case Management to contact you and be on the lookout for a call from a number that you don’t recognize.  If it has been more than 6 hours, you can call the Case Management team directly at 847-491-8422 or
  • If you develop symptoms while at home, stay at home, update your supervisor, and self-quarantine while you await additional guidance from Case Management.
  • If you develop symptoms while at work, update your supervisor, leave work immediately, and self-quarantine while you await additional guidance from Case Management
  • Testing: 
    • Do not go to one of our asymptomatic testing sites. 
    • If Case Management believes testing is the right next step, you will talk through options with them.  In order for your testing to be orchestrated by and paid for by Northwestern University, you need to follow the above steps and guidance from Case Management and not visit testing centers before connecting with Case Management

Feinberg School of Medicine clinical faculty or staff who are symptomatic should visit Feinberg's COVID-19 testing website for instructions.


If you are directed to test at a Northwestern-affiliated testing facility, your test result will be available through your MyNM account.

If your test results come back positive, a member of Northwestern’s COVID Response Team will reach out to walk you through next steps. This will include direction regarding your need to self-isolate as well as guidance regarding how Northwestern will coordinate required contact tracing and to help support your health and welfare throughout this period.

In the event that you receive notification of a positive result prior to hearing from the COVID Response Team, please immediately begin to self-isolate pending further guidance and call us at 847-491-8422. This number is currently staffed with case managers and contact tracers from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sundays. At all other times, this line will connect you to the University Health Service’s after hours call service where you can ask to speak with the physician-on-call, who will provide you with guidance for any immediate next steps.

If at any point you require emergency medical attention, call 911 to access the most local emergency services.