COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak

Update: Thursday 26 March 2020

Coronavirus updates for doctoral candidates

The School of Graduate Studies has transferred operations online, and we are all now working from home. Supporting prospective and current doctoral candidates and their supervisors remains our priority.

We have set up a new page, Coronavirus updates for doctoral candidates, to provide you with the latest information and advice for all PhD and named doctorate candidates.

Update: Wednesday 25 March 2020

University of Auckland student tests positive for COVID-19

The University of Auckland has confirmed that one of its students in the Business School has tested positive for COVID-19.

The student was on exchange overseas, where it is thought they contracted the virus, and returned to New Zealand last weekend. They immediately went into self-isolation, in line with the Government’s instructions for returning travellers. The student has not been on any of the University's campuses since returning to New Zealand.

The student is well and recovering at home with their family.

Read the announcement in full

Update: Tuesday 24 March 2020

University formally notifies of campus closure

In accordance with the Government’s instructions on the nationwide lockdown, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Auckland, Professor Dawn Freshwater, has today formally notified all students and staff that the University's campuses will be closed for four weeks, effective from 5.00pm, Wednesday 25 March.

All staff and students are required to stay away from the campus during the closure and work from home. The only exceptions will be a small number of authorised staff who are required to be on campus to support essential services that will remain open. This includes the University’s halls of residence, the University Health and Counselling Services, the Pharmacy for medical supplies, and Munchy Mart for food supplies, among select others.

Semester 1's teaching, in online mode, will recommence from Monday 30 March 2020. To accommodate the non-teaching week this week, Semester 1 will finish on Monday 6 July and Semester 2 will commence on Monday 27 July with consequential adjustment to other dates, including the Semester 2 examination period.

The University’s new approach to examinations and other forms of invigilated assessment assumes that all assessment will need to take place off campus. As a result, there will be no on-site tests or examinations for the rest of Semester 1.

These on-site tests and examinations will be replaced by ‘take home’ off-site assessment exercises, and will apply to students who have been studying on campus and to those students from China who have up to now been covered by study plans.

The University will circulate more information on how this approach will work in the coming days.

Updates: Monday 23 March 2020

Helping you study remotely survey

Emailed to all students on Friday 20 March: During this time of rapid change, we would like to understand how we can best support you in our ongoing communications and collective effort to support your learning needs. Understanding your current environment and any uncertainty you may face will help us better support you immediately and in the future.

This short survey should take you no more than 8 minutes to complete. We will ask you for some high-level demographic information to help us take follow-up action based on your feedback. We will need to identify individual respondents from this survey in order to follow up and support your ongoing learning needs.

We appreciate your open and honest feedback so that we can make meaningful and impactful adjustments as the situation evolves. Your responses will be treated in strict confidence and will only be shared with appropriate staff in order to meet your support needs.

Haven't taken the Helping you study remotely survey yet? Complete it now.

Update: Saturday 21 March 2020

To cover Teaching Free Week, lectures and tutorials will now be delayed by 1 week, with Week Four classes being delivered in Week Five. This will not affect the Mid-semester break, and the break will remain from 10 – 27 April. If you have any questions or concerns, please complete our Questions or concerns form.

Update: Thursday 19 March 2020

Impact on University life

May Graduation postponed

Following recent advice from the NZ Government on large public gatherings, the University of Auckland has regrettably decided not to proceed with the May Graduation ceremonies. More ceremonies will be added to the Spring Graduations in September instead.

What to do if you were attending the May Graduation ceremonies

Any enquiries should be sent to

Support for students

Please visit our dedicated pages for students: Coronavirus student support.  

What do I need to know?

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

  • a cough
  • a high temperature (at least 38°C)
  • shortness of breath
These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have COVID-19. The symptoms are similar to other illnesses that are much more common, such as cold and flu.

What can I do to protect myself?

  • The best advice is to practise good hygiene and hand-washing techniques, including:
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or by covering your mouth and nose with tissues.
  • Put used tissues in the bin or a bag immediately.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often, and dry your hands.
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
  • Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as doorknobs.
  • Stay home / in your University residence room (more information below) if you feel unwell and call Healthline on 0800 358 5453

What should I do if I think I have the virus?

If you are unwell and you have symptoms (see MoH COVID-19 symptoms) then you should contact Healthline at 0800 358 5453.

Should I use a face mask?

Current advice shows that hand washing, hygiene and good cough etiquette are far more effective than face masks for reducing the spread of this virus.

The Ministry of Health (MoH) recommends that there may be benefits in wearing a face mask and goggles for surgical, clinical and health-care settings to reduce the spread of infection from people with symptoms of an acute respiratory infection, but not for the general population unless there is a severe epidemic. For the general public in everyday situations, face masks are not recommended, as there is limited evidence that their use prevents the transmission of disease.

If you choose to wear a face mask, and get comfort from it, then the University supports your right to do this. Additionally, we should also respect the rights of others who choose to wear their own masks.

In particular, please be aware that in many cultures, including from Asia, face masks are worn by people routinely as a courtesy to those around them, and for guarding against pollution and pollen. If you see someone wearing a face mask, it’s just as likely they are being considerate towards you, rather than protecting themselves.

New Zealand support services / information

New Zealand Government

New Zealand Ministry of Health online

New Zealand Ministry of Health COVID-19 (overview page)

New Zealand Ministry of Health on Facebook @minhealthnz


New Zealand Ministry of Health dedicated coronavirus helpline

Note: If you want to find out about COVID-19, please look at the online resources listed above first.  

0800 358 5453 (or +64 9 358 5453 for overseas SIMs).

The 0800 number is free to call, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and will be staffed by members of the National Telehealth Service with interpreters on hand to help with translation.

Immigration New Zealand Contact Centre coronavirus-specific helpline

0508 225 288 (within NZ) or +64 9 952 1679 (outside NZ).

Immigration New Zealand response to COVID-19 (information on travelling to New Zealand, including travel bans and self-isolation requirements)

Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas