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With the spring semester in full swing, campus positivity rate declines

COVID-19 saliva test tube
A COVID-19 saliva test taken on campus
Zachary Shevin / The Daily Princetonian

Last week, students flocked to in-person classes, kicking off the first week of the spring semester. During that same period, campus COVID-19 cases among undergraduates witnessed an increase of nearly 50 percent compared to the previous week. The week ending on Jan. 28 saw nearly 123 undergraduates who tested positive, a slight uptick from the 77 positive cases the week prior.

More than twice as many undergraduate tests were submitted last week compared to the week ending on Jan. 21, with a change from 4,091 to 9,344; the vast majority of students are now on campus and participating in the asymptomatic testing protocol, which requires students to submit tests on a biweekly basis.


The University COVID-19 Dashboard indicates that the numbers of positive cases among faculty, staff, and graduate students last week remained more or less consistent with those of the week ending on Jan. 21, with 37 University personnel and 17 graduate students testing positive.

Overall, the University currently boasts a 1.05 percent positivity rate among those participating in the asymptomatic testing protocol, a brief decline from the previous week’s positivity rate of 1.58 percent.

During this time, dining halls were still exclusively offering grab-and-go as the sole option, a restriction that has now been lifted as of Monday, Jan. 31. Other dining options, such as Murray-Dodge Cafe, Frist Campus Food Gallery, and Coffee Club, have also reopened as of Jan. 31.

Data concerning isolation housing capacity has yet to be provided for the week ending on Jan. 28. During the week ending on Jan. 21, 241 students were in isolation housing in total.

Amy Ciceu is a senior writer who often covers research and COVID-19-related developments. She also serves as a Newsletter Editor. She can be reached at