Access to University Laboratories and Research Facilities

Laboratory research often involves potentially hazardous and regulated materials, such as biological and chemical agents, toxins, and radioisotopes, and potentially hazardous equipment.  For this reason, regular access to Yale laboratories and research support facilities is restricted to authorized laboratory personnel, including faculty, staff, postdoctoral associates and fellows, and students whose presence is part of their normal work, supervised research or coursework, or is a consequence of normal academic interaction and collaboration.

Other employees and students, as well as individuals from other academic or research institutions, business organizations, governmental agencies, and vendors, may visit Yale laboratories and research support facilities on a short term, infrequent basis provided that there is an academic, business, or educational purpose for the visit that is related to the operation of the laboratory.  Faculty members, laboratory managers, and their designees are responsible for making appropriate arrangements for such visits based on considerations of safety and non-disruption of research activities, and for denying access to non-authorized personnel.  Certain laboratories and research support facilities have more restrictive access policies and procedures. In this regard, visitors may not enter any laboratory, animal, or clinical facility that requires specialized training and/or a Yale appointment to gain access without preapproval from all applicable entities (Environmental Health & Safety, Yale Animal Resource Center, etc.).

Visitors to Yale laboratories or research support facilities must be escorted by laboratory personnel. As relevant, a briefing should be provided regarding activities currently underway in the lab, where not to touch (keeping in mind that potential hazards may not be obvious to visitors), what to do in case of an emergency, and exit routes. Under some circumstances, visitors may be asked to wear personal protective gear appropriate for the hazards present in the laboratory or research facility.

Visitor access under the conditions described above does not constitute authorization to conduct research in a Yale laboratory or research support facility.  Performing research in these facilities requires a formal Yale appointment and completion of all appropriate safety and compliance training. Minors may not visit laboratories or research support facilities except as provided by the Policy Governing Minors Participating in Research or Clinical Activities.

Last updated: April 15, 2011