General information about Corona

Since 1 August 2020, RUB has been operating under Covid 19 conditions. The rules are likely to remain in force until the end of the winter semester, i.e. until 31 March 2021 – to the extent that the epidemiological developments and political guidelines will permit. Due to the increasing infection rates in Germany, RUB has modified the previous regulations on 14 December 2020. Since then, working from home and online teaching have been the norm. This will be the case at least until 28 March 2021. Important general questions and answers are compiled on this page. Moreover, detailed regulations, information and forms are provided in the "Serviceportal".

How do operations under Covid 19 conditions work in practice?

(Last update: 12 February 2021)

Face mask

On 29 October 2020 the mask obligation was extended and exists no longer only in the buildings, but also outside on the entire Campus. Since 25 January 2021, only surgical face masks and FFP-2 masks are allowed. See also the FAQ dated 28 January 2021.


Since 1 August 2020, all employees have had the option to alternate between working from home and working on campus. Starting 14 December 2020, working from home should be the norm whenever possible. Employees who prefer to work on campus can do so if they use their office alone and if they can safely travel to RUB. If possible, service and committee meetings should not be conducted in person but online.

Lectures, seminars, exams

Following the new Coronavirus Protection Regulation in the state of NRW, the Rectorate at RUB has decided that no in-person teaching, lab internships or examinations should take place from 16 December 2020 until at least 7 March 2021.

Exceptions only exist for examinations and preparatory measures for which postponement is unacceptable or impossible. Lecturers and examiners can apply for special authorisation from their faculty for these exceptions.

University library and learning rooms

From Wednesday 16 December 2020, all places of learning will be closed – this applies to the places of learning on campus, such as in the Central Library (UB) and in the SSC cafeteria, as well as to the learning workstations in Blue Square in the centre of Bochum. In addition to their electronic offering, which has been widely expanded since the beginning of April 2020, UB and individual departmental libraries continue to offer their scanning and lending services for printed media on a pre-order basis.

Business trips and excursions

Due to the current situation, the regulations for all business and research trips may change at short notice. The final decision is made by Department 3. Excursions are not possible at all right now.

Key rules for operations under Covid-19 conditions?

  • Keep your distance! At least 1.5 meters (5 feet). If that’s not possible, use plexiglass partition or cover your mouth and nose with a mask or cloth.
  • Face masks: See the FAQ dated 28 January 2021.
  • Communication: If possible always communicate by phone, email or video conference.
  • Greetings: Avoid at all cost! No handshakes! No hugs!
  • Rooms in general: Air all rooms regularly or leave ventilation/air conditioning switched on.
  • Confined spaces: (e.g. lifts, toilets, changing rooms, photocopy rooms, tea kitchens) should be used by one person at a time.
  • Social rooms: Should be used only by persons who are not allowed to eat and drink at the workplace (e.g. laboratory, workshop). Only one or a few persons at a time. Seats at a distance of at least 1.5 m (5 feet) next to each other (not facing each other).
  • Office workstations: Mainly in individual offices; alternatively: staff rotation in offices with several occupants resp. working from home. In offices used by several people at the same time, the distance between seats should be at least 1.5 m, if possible not facing each other. Auxiliary plexiglass partitioning. Until presumably 7 March 2021, offices should be used by only one person at a time.
  • Workshops and labs: Follow the distancing rules. Don’t share any personal protective equipment with others. If possible, don’t share any tools with others, clean them regularly and wear gloves when tools are used by more than one person.

Key rules for Covid-19 infection, symptoms, contact, international travel

  • Covid-19 infection verified: Patients who have tested positive for Covid-19 are not allowed to enter the RUB campus and facilities until the responsible public health department has lifted the quarantine.
  • Symptoms present: Persons with symptoms of a respiratory tract infection (cough, sniffles, sore throat with/without fever) and/or suffering from newly occurring odour or taste disorders are not allowed to enter their workplace; please contact your doctor instead (if necessary Covid-19 test, sick leave).
  • Contact with a patient: Persons who have had direct contact with a Covid-19 patient may only enter the RUB campus and facilities after the quarantine imposed by the health department has ended (at the earliest 14 days after contact).
  • International travel: During quarantine periods, RUB campus and facilities may not be entered. Please see the “Corona Einreiseverordnung NRW” (i.e. entry regulations NRW) for detailed information.
  • Current information sheet as PDF.


Will there be Covid rapid tests at RUB (5 March 2021)

Covid rapid tests can further reduce the risk of infection as part of a testing concept. This is why the coronavirus crisis team is currently developing a concept for the use of Covid rapid tests at RUB in certain scenarios. This concept will be discussed and decided upon by the RUB Rectorate in the near future.

The concept incorporates the plans from the faculties and the central Teaching Task Force for the coming summer semester 2021. A market exploration with regard to the self-tests that will soon be available will define the concept in more detail: which tests are actually available in what quantities? Whether and to what extent the rapid tests will then be performed in the individual organisational units at RUB has not yet been determined. RUB will provide information about the precise regulations in good time. Working for home for employees and online teaching are anticipated to remain the norm until the end of March.

When and where do you have to wear a face mask? (28 January 2021)

From 1 July 2020, people in all public areas within the RUB buildings had to wear mouth and nose covers. Corresponding signs at the building entrances point this out.

From 30 October 2020, masks are mandatory on the entire campus, including outdoors. A mouth-and-nose mask must be worn on all routes inside the buildings and in communal facilities (toilets, tea kitchens, etc.).

On 25 January 2021, the mask requirement on campus has been adjusted. The new rules are effective until 15 March 15 2021 for the time being. As is the case everywhere else in Germany, cloth masks or scarves may no longer be worn on the RUB campus, but only the so-called surgical face masks and FFP-2 masks. For RUB members who need to work on campus, RUB provides appropriate face masks. Everything else on this topic, including the distribution of face masks, can be found in the Serviceportal.

Does the Mensa remain open? (20 January 2021)

Due to the current lockdown rules, the Mensa has to remain closed at least until 7 March, 2021. Information about to-go offers of the Akafö can be found on the Akafö website.

Will the Unishop remain open? (8 January 2021)

During the lockdown, products of RUB Unishop cannot be purchased at the Infopoint in central administrations (Building UV). Please use the Onlineshop instead.

Is the Botanical Garden open? (6 January 2021)

No, the Botanical Garden will remain closed to visitors until at least 7 March 2021. Further details can be found on the website of the garden.

Why is the University not being closed – as it was in March 2020? (14 December 2020)

Compared to March 2020, RUB has learned a lot and has a better idea as to how the university’s operations can be maintained with the greatest possible infection protection. The Rectorate, however, urges all supervisors in academia and administration to allow their employees to work from home wherever possible.

What effects does the new lockdown have on university sports? (9 November 2020)

There will be no sports courses in attendance in November 2020. The university sports team offers digital alternatives.

Why do face masks help? (27 October 2020)

By covering the mouth and nose, infectious droplets that are emitted when speaking, coughing or sneezing can be intercepted. According to a recent study, the risk of Covid-19 infection can be reduced by up to 70 percent if the contact persons wear a face mask. However, this does not apply to respiratory masks with an exhalation valve, as here the exhaled air passes through the valve unfiltered and even strikes other people in a direct jet. Therefore, to avoid Covid 19 infections, respirators with an exhalation valve are not suitable and should not be worn. Further information in the Serviceportal.

May I study or revise in public seating areas in the RUB buildings? (29 July 2020)

According to the Corona Protection Ordinance of the State of NRW, RUB is responsible for documenting all contacts in its buildings so that the public health department can identify all contact persons of the infected person(s) in the event of a Covid-19 infection. Therefore, it is currently not possible to use public seating areas in the RUB buildings to study or revise. However, we are developing concepts to ensure that some areas on campus may be used for this purpose. Please note that people are still not permitted to gather in corridors and public areas, as they can’t be reliably traced! Students need a good reason to enter the RUB buildings (e.g. to attend in-person classes, exams, library appointments, appointments with advisors/supervisors). For all courses, meetings etc., the person responsible resp. the organiser must ensure that all contacts are documented. Further information.

When and why will operations under Covid 19 conditions be implemented? (13 July 2020)

As of 1 August 2020, RUB will introduce operations under Covid-19 conditions: in order to effectively protect RUB members and visitors against infection, the curriculum in the winter semester 2020/21 will be for the most part digital; at the same time, this will enable us to gradually return back to normal at work, even as it’s impossible to say how long the pandemic will last.

Covid-19 operations will remain in effect until the university management announces a new phase. These rules will probably apply until the end of the 2020/2021 winter semester, i.e. until 31 March 2021, to the extent that the epidemiological development and official policies will allow.

The aim is to

  • promote socialising in the workplace and avoid potential social isolation when working from home;
  • optimise work organisation and processes under the current conditions.

Which entrances to the buildings are open? (30 June 2020)

From 1 July 2020, most of the buildings will again be accessible via all entrances and within the usual building-specific opening hours. Details can be found in the "Serviceportal".

Where can I get help in cause of mental health problems triggered by the measures implemented due to coronavirus? (6 April 2020)

LWL-Universitätsklinikum Bochum has opened a hotline for Bochum citizens to help them overcome mental-health crises. The Corona hotline is available Monday to Friday between 8 am and 4 pm under 0234 50774567.

Moreover, the RUB Mental Health Research and Treatment Center offers an anonymous hotline for RUB members and citizens of Bochum who suffer from mental stress or family stress due to the current corona crisis.

  • For adults: Monday to Friday, 6pm to 8pm, Hotline: 0234 3221100
  • For children, adolescents and parents: Monday to Friday, 4pm to 6pm, Hotline: 0234 3221101

Who coordinates the measures at RUB? (23 March 2020)

RUB has set up a crisis management team. It coordinates with the relevant authorities what measures need to be taken. The university management, the student and staff administration, the company medical office, the occupational safety unit and the corporate communications department are represented in the crisis committee.

Getty Images/iStockphoto
Current information about Corona
To top