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All registered students who will have a presence on campus must comply with Massachusetts and Harvard University regulations requiring proof of immunization against certain communicable diseases, including COVID-19. Massachusetts and Harvard University immunization requirements are strict and may differ significantly from other states and countries.

You are required to submit documentation within 10 days of registering for any course with any on-campus presence, which is defined as being registered in an:

  • on-campus course
  • on-campus or online course, if you plan to attend class on campus
  • online course with a required on-campus weekend
  • on-campus active learning weekend

This requirement also applies if you are taking online-only courses this academic year, and:

  • wish to obtain or use a class participant library card to gain on-campus access to Harvard libraries.
  • are a degree candidate or premedical program participant and wish to obtain or use your Harvard ID card to access on-campus resources.

This requirement does NOT apply if you are registered in online-only courses and never plan to come to campus; it ONLY applies if you will be coming to campus.

COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement

Harvard University requires 2 FDA- or WHO- authorized COVID-19 vaccinations, OR 1 bivalent dose for all eligible students. 

You must submit proof of vaccination (or medical or religious exemption documentation) to University Health Services if you will have any on-campus presence. 

You are required to submit documentation within 10 days of registering for any course with any on-campus presence. You risk being dropped from your on-campus courses, even after classes begin, if you do not upload your documentation in an expedited manner or if your status is noncompliant.   

How to submit your documentation 

To upload your immunization documentation, you must have your Harvard University Identification number, HUID, and you will need to claim your HarvardKey. You will claim your HarvardKey at key.harvard.edu. If you do not know your HUID, you will find it at the top right corner of your MyDCE homepage. 

If you have your HUID, have claimed your HarvardKey and you encounter problems accessing the Patient Portal, there may be a delay in your information transferring to the Portal. It may take up to two business days after you’ve claimed your HarvardKey for the Patient Portal to be accessible to you. For further problems with HUID/ HarvardKey, contact HUIT (Harvard University Information Technology) (617) 495-7777. 

Instructions for uploading COVID-19 immunization documentation:  

  • Visit the HUHS Patient Portal website 
  • Click on the black button that says “Log into the HUHS Patient Portal”
  • Click Log in with your HarvardKey. 
  • On the left-hand side of the window, click on Medical Clearances. 
  • Items Required for Clearance will appear on the right. 
  • Click on the green Update button for each required immunization. 
  • For each required immunization, enter the date of the vaccination. Enter dates using MMDDYYYY format. 
  • For each required immunization, upload the supporting immunization documentation. 
  • Click Done. 
  • If the upload does not work, your file may be too large. It is suggested that you try to upload in multiple, separate batches. 

COVID documentation must be uploaded to the Harvard University Health Service (HUHS) Patient Portal. Do not submit COVID vaccination information to staff via email or through your MyDCE account. 

Confirmation of Compliance 

You will know that you’ve complied with the requirement when you see your status for the COVID vaccine clearance in your Patient Portal updated with a green marking indicating “compliant.” 

The review by HUHS is not instantaneous and may take several business days from the time you uploaded your document. If you see a red mark indicating “not compliant,” your immediate attention is required to resolve your status and to ensure your compliance prior to the start of the term.  

Consequences of non-compliance 

You are required to submit documentation within 10 days of registering for any course with any on-campus presence. 

You risk being dropped from your on-campus courses, even after classes begin, if you do not upload your documentation in an expedited manner or if your status is noncompliant. 

You are responsible for any expenses that you incur if you fail to comply with the University’s COVID-19 immunization policy and are dropped from class. 

IMPORTANT: If you register in the final days of registration, it is your responsibility to upload COVID-19 documentation in an expedient manner according to the directions above. You run the risk of being dropped after courses begin for non-compliance. 

Email reminders  

The Harvard Extension School will send frequent email reminders regarding this policy to those students registered in on-campus courses. Please be on the lookout for our emails and check your SPAM folders for our communications. It is your responsibility to comply with this policy, as outlined under Expectations. 

Have additional questions? Email Immunizations@Extension.Harvard.Edu

COVID-19 FAQs

Q: How do I request a medical or religious exemption? 

A: Requests for medical or religious COVID exemptions are reviewed by the clinical staff at Harvard University Health Services directly. Please fill out the Student Vaccine Exemption form and upload the documents to the HUHS Patient Portal.  

If you are submitting a COVID medical exemption that is NOT related to a recent COVID illness, you will need certification by an examining physician that you are not medically eligible for the vaccine along with your exemption form. The letter from your physician must indicate when you are cleared to receive the vaccine (providing a date), or that you cannot receive the vaccination at all. Otherwise HUHS will not accept the exemption. 

Q: I submitted my vaccination card, why am I marked not-compliant? 

A: A common reason why students are not being listed as compliant after having submitted their COVID vaccination information is if they have not yet provided evidence of having received two FDA or WHO approved doses OR 1 bivalent dose administered after September 1, 2022. If your vaccinations do not meet the criteria described above, you will need to see another COVID vaccination.  

Q: I can’t edit the vaccination dates in the Patient Portal, what do I do? 

A: The Patient Portal does not allow students to edit the dates they have already submitted. You may reupload your documents and University Health Services will correct the dates on your behalf. 

Q: How long does it take for documents to be reviewed? 

A: It can take up to 10 business days for University Health Services (UHS) staff to review documentation. Documents are being reviewed in the order in which they are received by UHS staff for students, faculty, and staff from across the University, not just Harvard Extension School. We encourage you to submit as soon as possible after registering and please be patient while you wait for your documents to be reviewed. Please be assured that your registration status will not be impacted while your documents are under review.   

Q: If I only have evidence of my bivalent dose, will that be enough? 

A: Yes. If you do not have documentation of 2 FDA or WHO approved doses, but you do have evidence of an FDA or WHO approved bivalent dose completed after September 1, 2022, HUHS will accept the documentation.  

Other Required Immunizations

In compliance with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Harvard University immunization regulations, if you will have an on-campus presence, you must submit proof of immunizations against additional communicable diseases. Have a Certificate of Immunization Form completed by your health-care provider, and upload it to the “Other Required Immunizations” Subtask in your MyDCE account.  

The immunizations that must be certified on the Extension School Immunization form include: 

  • Flu: one immunization after July 1, 2023 
  • Measles (Rubeola): two immunizations on or after the first birthday, at least one month* apart, in 1967 or later 
  • Rubella (German measles): two immunizations on or after the first birthday, at least one month* apart, in 1967 or later 
  • Mumps: two immunizations on or after the first birthday, at least one month* apart, in 1967 or later 
  • Varicella (chickenpox): a history of varicella disease certified by physician or two varicella immunizations at least one month* apart, on March 1, 1995, or later 
  • Tetanus-diphtheria-acellular pertussis: one dose of “Tdap” every 10 years; only acceptable vaccines are Adacel, Boostrix, or adult acellularpertussis booster. Vaccinations older than 10 years will not be accepted 
  • Hepatitis B: three immunizations. The first and second dose must be at least 1 month* apart. Third dose must be done at least 2 months* after second dose and should be 4 months* after first dose.
  • Meningococcal: Harvard requires this immunization for all students who are between the ages of 16 and 21. ACWY vaccine ONLY. Meningococcal B vaccines will NOT accepted in lieu of ACWY. Those 22 and older do not need this immunization 

*One month is equal to 28 days 

Documentation of a blood test proving immunity to measles, rubella, mumps, hepatitis B, and/or varicella (chickenpox) is acceptable in lieu of immunizations. If you do not need to be immunized against hepatitis B because you have had the disease or have a chronic carrier form of it, you must provide documentation of appropriate laboratory tests or a letter from your physician. 

If you were born in the United States before 1957, you may waive the requirement for proof of immunity to measles, mumps, and rubella. If you were born in the United States before 1980, you may waive the requirement for proof of immunity to varicella (chickenpox). 

Instructions for uploading immunization documentation 

  • Have a Certificate of Immunization Form completed by your health-care provider 
  • Log in to your MyDCE account and select the “Meet the Immunization Requirements” Task. 
  • Under the “Other Required Immunizations” subtask, click to attach your document. 
  • Submit the subtask for review.  

NOTE: This is different from the COVID-19 vaccination document upload process.  

Exceptions and consequences 

The only circumstances that may exempt you from these regulations are as follows: 

  • Providing written certification from your physician that your health would be endangered by one or more of the immunizations (in which case, you will be required to submit laboratory evidence of immunity to measles, mumps, rubella, varicella [chickenpox], and hepatitis B as an alternative to proof of immunization), 
  • Or providing a signed statement that the required immunizations conflict with your religious beliefs. (In this case, it is recommended that you present evidence of immunity as described above.) 

In either case, if there is an outbreak on campus of any of the diseases specified on the current Extension School immunization form for which you have not submitted acceptable documentation, you will be administratively withdrawn from classes. 

Other Required Immunizations FAQs

Q: How do I request a medical or religious exemption? 

A: Requests for medical or religious exemptions for other immunizations are reviewed by the Enrollment Requirements team. Please fill out the Student Vaccine Exemption form and upload through your MyDCE portal.

If you are submitting a medical exemption, you will need certification by an examining physician that you are not medically eligible for the selected vaccination along with your exemption form. 

In either case, if there is an outbreak on campus of any of the diseases specified on the current Extension School immunization form for which you have not submitted acceptable documentation, you will be administratively withdrawn from classes. 

Q: I just began MMR, Hep B, and/or Varicella vaccination series. I won’t complete the series before classes begin. Will this affect my registration? 

A: We understand that students who are just now beginning certain immunization series will not have time to complete them before classes begin.

As long as you have taken all the immunizations that are possible within the specified time frame/schedule stated on our Immunization Form, your immunization status will be sufficient for the semester you are registered for. Note that you will be expected to be fully immunized by the time you begin a new semester. 

Q: What are the consequences if I have missing or outstanding immunizations? 

A: Outstanding or missing records not related to COVID will not affect your current registration. However, if there is an outbreak on campus of any of the diseases specified on the current Extension School immunization form for which you have not submitted acceptable documentation, you will be administratively withdrawn from classes.

While outbreaks are unlikely, we ask students to be aware of these potential consequences.

Q: I have alternate medical documentation from my doctor. Can I submit that instead of the immunization form? 

A: We do accept alternate immunization documentation if it is certified by a health-care provider or medical records official and is in English. Your alternate documentation must still demonstrate compliance with the Massachusetts and Harvard University immunizations regulations. Specific information on these regulations is available on our the Extension School Website.

If you cannot provide documentation of each required immunization, there are several diseases for which you can have a blood titer that will evidence whether or not you have immunity to them (Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Hepatitis B, and Varicella). You need to provide the Extension School with the proof of these blood titers by uploading them through your MyDCE portal. For the diseases that do not allow blood titers (Meningococcal, Tetanus-Diphtheria-Pertussis), you must receive the vaccinations again and provide the proof.