How our Covid-19 testing works

This page provides further information about our asymptomatic Covid-19 testing. If you are a Sheffield Hallam student but do not yet have an appointment, read our page on booking a test.

World Snooker Championship testing

If you are a member of the public attending the World Snooker Championships, you do not need to book a test. Pre-booked tests are for students only. Opening times for walk-in tests are on the email you received from the event organiser.

Where to go

Our test centre is in the Owen building on City Campus. You can see the location on our City Campus map.

Please note that the latest government guidance recommends that you should avoid eating or drinking for at least 30 minutes before taking the test to reduce the risk of spoiling the result.

You will check in and register at the reception desk just inside the building. There will be staff and signage to direct you through to Hallam Hall to take your test.

Please bring your SHUcard and an internet-enabled device, and remember to:

  • wear a face covering, unless you are exempt,
  • stick to 2m social distancing,
  • use the hand sanitisers, and
  • cancel your test if you develop Covid-19 symptoms.

If you need to cancel your test, email hallamhelp@shu.ac.uk as soon as possible.

Please do not take photos or record video anywhere in the test centre. The centre is a clinical environment, and is covered by strict data protection rules.

What we'll ask you to do

1. Check-in

We will check your temperature, confirm your appointment and ask you to show your SHUcard. It will help if you bring this, but you will still be able to get a test without it.

2. Registration

You will get a registration card and two barcodes with matching ID numbers. Scan the QR code to register for a coronavirus lateral flow test on the gov.uk website. Enter SHFL when asked for the testing site ID.

Once you are registered, keep the barcodes with you and follow directions to the testing booths in Hallam Hall.

3. Test

You might have to queue before you are directed to a testing booth. If so, make sure you continue to observe social distancing. There will be wheelchair accessible booths available.

The person helping with your test will take your barcode and give you a swab to use in your throat and nose. You will need to do the swab yourself, but you can ask for guidance if you have trouble. There will also be printed guidance in the booth.

The video below explains more about how self-swab tests work.

Getting your results

The NHS testing service will send your results by SMS and/or email. Results typically come within a few hours, but can take as little as 30 minutes. The NHS will not share your results with the University.

What next?

The University will email you on the day of your test. 

If you test positive, you must self-isolate and notify the University using our Covid-19 reporting form.

For more detailed advice, read our page about what to do after your test.

About the test

We are providing free, voluntary lateral flow tests to students who are not experiencing Covid-19 symptoms.

Who runs the test

The testing system is managed by NHS Test and Trace. This includes the test registration process, the test materials and the delivery of test results.

The test centre is operated by the University, and has been set up according to government guidelines. The University provides appointment booking, test centre staffing, and guidance before and after the test.

How lateral flow tests work

Lateral flow antigen tests detect coronavirus by applying a swab or saliva sample to an absorbent pad on an electronic device.

The sample runs along the surface of the pad, and the device gives a clear visual positive or negative result. Lateral flow tests do not require a laboratory, and the devices require minimal training to operate.

Lateral flow tests are approved by the NHS – they are safe, inexpensive and give reliable results.


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