Counseling Center

COVID-19 Care & Support Resources

The University of Maryland Counseling Center cares deeply about the UMD community and we extend our support to the community during this difficult and unprecedented situation caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. As we navigate the outbreak, the counseling center is committed to caring for, supporting, and serving this community through virtual services and resources.


We recognize that in the wake of this crisis, many students may be experiencing significant fear, not only about their physical health but also about the uncertainty that the outbreak poses. We understand that CDC guidelines on social distancing to protect ourselves and others, has led to severe and uncomfortable changes in our lives with which we must now must cope. Additionally, we acknowledge that the COVID-19 outbreak has greatly impacted certain communities, with unfortunate increases in xenophobic, racist, and anti-Semitic bias; additional stress on medically vulnerable individuals; and significant barriers to resources in lower-income and working-class communities.


In situations like this it is normal to feel anxious, experience stress, feel frustrated, depressed, and lonely. The resources outlined below may help you cope with these reactions and manage your mental health during this difficult time.



Coping Strategies

Coping with Stress during Covid-19 Outbreak
  • Limit exposure to media coverage of COVID-19 when appropriate and attempt to use only trusted sources of media. Remember that not everything you hear about the situation is accurate.
  • Try developing a routine or schedule daily activities, including fun or non-essential activities.
  • Consider reframing “social distancing” to “compassionate spacing” (as coined by Dr. Nancy Sidhu), reminding us to keep ourselves and others around us safe and healthy.
  • Stay connected through the many advanced technological methods we have. Some examples include phone calls with loved ones, Netflix Party (watch with friends), virtual dance parties, online games with friends, etc.
  • Keep your body moving! Staying safe does not mean having to stay still. Go for walks, get into nature, try a virtual exercise or yoga class, stretch, or turn up the music and dance!
  • Utilize the time alone for introspection and mental health care. Try meditation, deep breathing, journaling, or reading self-help materials.
  • Talk with loved ones about how this crisis is impacting you. Schedule time to communicate with people in your support network.
  • Keep things in perspective. Consider reframing negative, unrealistic, or catastrophic thoughts with more realistic ones. Try a gratitude journal if negative thoughts become intrusive.
  • Identify what is and is not in your control during this situation. Focus on the things within your control, such as educating yourself about prevention measures.
  • Discuss with family and roommates the possibility of having designated alone or study space.
  • Be compassionate with yourself and others. It is normal and acceptable to have a wide range of reactions to this crisis.
  • Be mindful of your assumptions about others. Be an ally to communities who are stigmatized during this crisis. And remember that not everyone with a cough has coronavirus.
  • Report incidents of bias to UMD’s Bias Incident Support Services and report acts of discrimination to UMD’s Office of Civil Rights & Sexual Misconduct.

Virtual Resources

FAQs for Services During COVID-19


Counseling Service

  1. What services are being provided at the Counseling Service?
    The Counseling Service is providing workshops, therapy groups, and couples and individual therapy. Additionally we will be providing a series of outreach presentations that will be open to the UMD student body without appointment. The topics will include coping skills, academic success, relationship and communication, and resilience and adaptability.

  2. How are your services being provided?
    Our services are being provided primarily through teletherapy. This means that your appointment will most likely occur via phone or zoom. Only on very rare occasions will appointments be in person. We are committed to keeping you and the University community safe through this pandemic.

  3. Are you providing services in-person?
    Our services are primarily being provided online. In order to protect you and athe UMD community, we are limiting in-person services.

  4. How do I schedule an appointment?
    Appointments can be scheduled by calling our main line at 301-314-7651. To limit foot traffic in the building, we encourage students to call to schedule an appointment.

  5. What are your hours of operation?
    We are open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 4:30pm.

  6. What is required for my appointment?
    Clients should identify a private space for their appointments. Clients may decide to use headphones for additional privacy. Sessions can be conducted using zoom on one's computer or mobile device. Your counselor will need to know an emergency contact in the state that you currently reside and your location in case of an emergency.

  7. What if I don’t have a private space for my online appointment?
    If you do not have a private space, your counselor will work with you to identify a space on campus for your sessions.

  8. What services do minority students have available to them?
    The Counseling Service has diverse staff with significant experience and expertise in providing services to students with marginalized identities. We also offer groups for students representing specific identities. For example, we have groups for Black women (Circle of Sisters), Latinx students (Entre Nosotrxs Latinx Support Group), LGBTQ+ (LGBTQ+ Support group), and International students (International Student Support group). If you would like to be matched with a psychologist of color, please mention this to your intake / triage counselor.

  9. How will I be contacted regarding my appointment?
    The primary mode of contact will be through email. There will be times when counselors or the front desk staff may need to call you. If they are working remotely, they will use *67 to suppress the personal phone number. This will be displayed as “unknown caller” on your caller ID. In order to receive calls, your settings will need to allow calls from unknown callers.



Accessibility and Disability Service

Student FAQ

  1. How will students meet with ADS staff during the pandemic?
    ADS staff continue to be available to speak with students and hold appointments remotely via teleservice, either via phone or video chat (ex. Zoom). Students wanting to speak to ADS should reach out to their assigned counselor by email or call the ADS front desk at (301) 314-7682 to schedule an appointment.

  2. How do I meet with my instructors to discuss accommodations in the remote environment?
    ADS recommends that instructors and students schedule a private meeting to discuss accommodation needs. This meeting can be completed either via phone or video chat (ex. Zoom). Group meetings are strongly discouraged as they do not allow for privacy or confidentiality of each individual student.

  3. What are the main components of a meeting with instructors when sharing my letter and discussing my approved accommodations?
    • Discuss all of the accommodations that you wish to have implemented in the class.
    • Discuss a plan for implementation of the accommodations, for example, the time that your exam will start to accommodate for the extra time, information needed for textbook conversions or other technology, collaborative efforts for obtaining a note taker in the class, etc.
    • Development of a detailed implementation plan with your instructor for accommodations that require a written plan signed by the student and the instructor.
    • Obtain the instructors digital signature or an emailed acknowledgement of the discussion.


  4. Will I continue to receive extensions on exams in the online environment?
    Yes, your established accommodations carry over into the online environment. Your instructor will adjust your exam/quiz length to include your approved extended time.

  5. How will extra time on online exams/quizzes be implemented?
    Students must share their accommodation letters with their instructors and have a conversation with them as soon as possible in order to activate the accommodations in their classes. You must request extended time for an exam or quiz at least three business days in advance. The length of all online exams for which extended time is required will be adjusted by the instructor to include the required extension.

  6. How can I ensure that I will receive test accommodations now that ADS is no longer using the online test reservation system?
    Students who use extended time and/or break accommodations for exams should contact their course instructors at least three (3) business days in advance of each test/quiz to request implementation of their accommodation(s). This will allow instructors adequate time to adjust a student's testing length within the ELMS-Canvas platform for tests and quizzes administered online. Students who need access to adaptive technology for exams should contact their ADS counselor at the beginning of the semester for assistance in coordinating access to required technology.

  7. If I require adaptive/assistive technology for some or all of my exams, how will this be arranged and implemented?
    All exams on campus for the Fall semester will be delivered online through ELMS. Some students, however, will need access to supplemental technologies when taking their online exams. Any student requiring adaptive/assistive technology for taking their exams should consult individually with the ADS Adaptive Technology Lab Coordinator at
    301-314-7958 to confirm and arrange for their specific exam accommodations.

  8. What are some strategies that I can use to reduce distractions when taking an online exam outside of the normal classroom setting?

    Consider the following strategies to limit visual and auditory distractions in your environment and to minimize interruptions during your exam:
    • Arrange your workspace so that you are facing a solid wall, away from windows or doors to minimize visual distractions.
    • Close window blinds and keep the door to your workspace closed.
    • Power off your cell phone or keep it out of sight with the ringer on silent and all alarms turned off.
    • Wear ear plugs or non-electronic noise cancelling headphones to minimize auditory distractions.
    • White noise, such as turning on an oscillating fan, can also help minimize distracting ambient or background environmental noise.
    • Inform others in your household that you will be testing and request they be respectful and quiet during your exam session.
    • If you are permitted to start your exam at a time of your choosing, consider what time of day is quietest in your environment and take your exam at that time.
    • To the degree that your environment allows, create an academic setting space to take your exam (away from TV, food, etc.) to mimic the classroom environment.

  9. How do I manage technical difficulties, such as computer problems or inaccurate time adjustments to my exam while taking a timed accommodated online exam?
    ADS recommends that students and instructors create a just in-case technical difficulty plan for online testing sessions in advance of the testing date. This plan can confirm the exact contact information students should use to inform their instructors while the testing session continues. By creating a plan in advance, it can help to limit potential stress related to technical issues that may arise in an online environment.

  10. In an online course, what portions of the course is my note taker required to provide notes?
    The note taker should provide notes for class lectures, whether during a Zoom class gathering (synchronous) or a recorded lecture or video (asynchronous).
    Notes are not required for printed materials posted to the course site, such as assignments, written transcripts of lectures, assigned articles or other readings, and other printed materials included in the course.

  11. Do students with note taking accommodations still require a note taker when all course material is recorded and asynchronous?
    Yes, if a student is taking an asynchronous course and some or all of the course material is in an audio or audio-visual (AV) format, the note taker should provide notes for the audio and AV material. Printed course materials do not require a note taker.

  12. Will I be able to visit the Adaptive Technology Lab in the Fall?
    Please note that due to Covid-19 precautions this Fall, there will be no access to the ATLab without an appointment. Appointments will only be made in rare extenuating circumstances. ATLab contact: Coordinator, Dan Newsome; email - wdn@umd.edu; phone -(301) 314-7958.

Faculty FAQ
  1. How do I meet with students to discuss accommodations in the remote environment?
    ADS recommends that instructors and students schedule a private meeting to discuss accommodation needs. This meeting can be completed either via phone or video chat (ex. Zoom). Group meetings are strongly discouraged as they do not allow for privacy or confidentiality of each individual student.

  2. How can I get my course materials (videos or other media) captioned?
    ADS Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services (DHHS) assists instructors with both post production and live captioning needs. Please review our website or email dhhs@umd.edu for more information on how we can serve you.

  3. How do I know which students in my course are registered with ADS and require test accommodations?
    Students with accommodations must share their accommodation letter with instructors and meet with them to discuss accommodations they will need to use for the class. Students with testing accommodations will have it listed on their accommodation letter. Please remind students that if they have test accommodations they should request the accommodations for each exam or quiz at least three (3) business days in advance.

  4. How will extra time on online exams/quizzes be implemented?
    Students must share their accommodation letters with their instructors and have a conversation with them as soon as possible in order to activate the accommodations in their classes. You must request extended time for an exam or quiz at least three business days in advance. The length of all online exams for which extended time is required will be adjusted by the instructor to include the required extension.

  5. A student requires extended time on exams and quizzes; how do I calculate the exact amount of time needed?
    Please see the following link for the Google Spreadsheet for the Extended Time Calculator:
    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1yxjzogYqp-J-GVO8VHnfvtbyU_tFBUgJ_IsXpXl7mIU/edit?usp=sharing

  6. How are students' requests for converted reading materials managed within the online environment?
    Students who require converted reading materials are referred by their ADS counselor to the ADS Alternative Text Unit. The student is responsible for scheduling a virtual meeting with the Alt Text Unit by emailing adsalttext@umd.edu. The Alt Text Coordinator will assess the alternate text needs (e.g., audio books, enlarged print, Braille, etc.) during the meeting with the student in order to create the required alternative to printed materials.



The COVID-19 outbreak has become the primary focus of the world at this time. However, we recognize that students may be struggling with concerns unrelated to this situation or may have pre-existing difficulties that are now exacerbated by this pandemic. Our Common Student Concerns pages offer detailed information, coping strategies, and resources for a variety of concerns, both related and unrelated to the current crisis.