Guest Policies

Note: different guest policies and/or limits may be in place during breaks, interim periods, and/or the summer. For more information, please consult the policy information provided to you for that time period.

The Guest Policy is implemented by the staff in Residential Life and Public Safety.  The residence hall front desks are staffed 24/7 by Access Attendants (AA), who are members of the Barnard Public Safety department.  For the purpose of this policy, a “guest” is defined as any non-resident of the residence hall.  However, all current Barnard students (regardless of whether they live in BC or CU housing) may enter any Barnard residence hall as a guest at any time, for purposes of visiting residents, by presenting a valid Barnard ID with current sticker to the AA.  Each student’s Barnard ID must be presented and have a current residence hall sticker on it to be admitted to the residence halls.  Current commuter students may obtain a sticker form the Student Life office in order to access residential facilities.  Although this policy permits current Barnard students to enter any residence hall in which they do not live without escort, if there is any misuse/abuse of the tenets of visitation privileges, all students are held accountable for the Guest Policy regardless of where they live and what hall they are in at the time of the incident.  This Guest Policy includes all Barnard College owned and operated residential facilities.

Any CU students who live in Barnard residence halls may enter the hall in which they reside at any time as long as they have a specific Barnard residence hall sticker for, and present their CU ID to the Access Attendant.  CU students who wish to enter any Barnard residence hall of which they are not a resident must be signed in as a guest at all times by a resident of that building.

The intent of guest privileges is to allow for reasonable visitation by a resident's friends, not long term or live-in visitors.  In fairness to those paying the room fee, repeated visits by the same guest are strongly discouraged and may be denied.  The guest policy applies to all resident students, including those who live in single rooms.  Barnard students who live in campus owned or operated residence halls may sign-in guests to their own residence hall only.  For example, if you live in the Quad and are visiting someone in 600, you may not sign a guest into 600.  The Residential Life staff may be called upon to help resolve conflicts and/or concerns regarding guests.  Residential Life and Housing or Public Safety supervisors may ask that guests disperse if there is concern about maximum occupancy in a given area.    

Residential students are prohibited from giving their keys and/or ID card to another to use in order to gain entry into a residence hall.   The College reserves the right to suspend or terminate an individual's guest privileges, as well as the right to limit guest privileges during times when classes are not in session, or as otherwise deemed necessary.  Common areas such as building lounges are for the use of residents of that building and may not be reserved for group gatherings.  

Responsibility for Guests

At the time the guest enters the building, the host accepts responsibility and liability for the actions of their guest, and this includes Barnard students who are guests in another residence hall.   The host is expected to escort the guest at ALL times the guest is inside of the building.  Students are responsible for their guests' behavior at all times and for ensuring that guests comply with all Barnard College policies.  In addition, the Barnard student host assumes the consequences for violations and/or damages incurred by their guests, and are subject to disciplinary action by the College due to the behavior of their guests.  All students, whether guest or residential, share responsibility for maintaining a sense of community in our residence halls, this includes greeting and inquiring about anyone unfamiliar to them.  Arrangements for having visitors must be negotiated and mutually agreed upon by roommates and/or suitemates.

Guest Access

All Barnard owned and operated residence halls have a front desk that is staffed 24/7 by either an Access Attendant (AA), who is an employee of Barnard Public Safety, or by an outside Security firm.  These staff will manage all access-related issues for the residence halls.   

Non-Barnard student guests are required to notify the host that they are present in the lobby and waiting to be escorted.  The resident must come down to the front desk with their ID (1) to register the guest at the front desk and to escort the guest into the building.  Guests are required to leave a current and valid photo ID (2) at the front desk until such time as their host escorts them back to the desk to be checked out.  

The resident host must stay with their guest at all times.  If a guest returns to the front desk without the host being present, the ID card will not be returned to the guest, and notice of the alleged policy violation will be submitted to Residential Life.   

  1. The resident host MUST have a current building sticker on their ID which matches the building where they are attempting to sign-in a guest. For example, if you reside in 600, but are visiting a friend in Plimpton, you will not be able to sign a guest into Plimpton because your building sticker is for 600.  
  2. A photo ID is defined as any identification card with the individual's photo and full name present on the card, including (but is not limited to) a current and valid student/employee ID with photo or a current driver license with photo.  If the type of ID presented has a visible expiration date, it is expected that the ID be current in order for staff to accept it.  Credit cards, ATM cards, non-Photo IDs, and/or expired Photo IDs will not be accepted as a valid form of ID. For the safety and security of the guest, if they arrive with ONLY their passport, the AA staff will NOT hold on to this passport, but will issue the guest a form to carry with them while they are visiting the residence hall.

Any guest who does not have acceptable photo identification to present to the Access Attendant will be asked to complete a form providing identifying personal and emergency contact information.  Once approved for entry, the host must leave their ID at the front desk along with one copy of the Inadequate ID form.  The guest is required to carry their copy of this form with them at all times while in the residence hall.  If a student's guests repeatedly attempt to gain entry without appropriate identification, the student's guest privileges, and those of the guest, may be suspended for a period of time.   

All non-Barnard student guests must be properly signed in and out.  All Barnard students must present a current College ID to gain access or may be required to sign in.

Guest Limits

Note: different guest policies and/or limits may be in place during breaks, interim periods, and/or the summer. For more information, please consult the policy information provided to you for that time period.

Residents hosting guests (including Barnard students who do not reside in this room/suite) are expected to insure their guest(s) do not pose an unreasonable burden or infringement on the privacy and privileges of the room or suite-mates, or other residents.  Guest limits are addressed in the following ways in this policy: 

  • Each resident may sign in no more than three guests at any given time.  Each guest must be properly signed in and out and is the responsibility of the host resident at all times.  Guests may not be signed in for other residents nor may they be left unattended in the residence halls.  
  • Provided that there is no unreasonable interference with the rights of a roommate or suitemate, a resident may have a short-term guest(s) (those whose stay is for a few hours, but not overnight) at any time as long as it is within the limits noted above.  
  • In terms of overnight guests, any individual may be hosted as a guest in the Barnard residence halls (within the above noted limits) for no more than three consecutive nights and no more than six nights total in any 30-day period.  Barnard students are considered "overnight guests" if they stay in any room other than that to which they are assigned.  


In extenuating circumstances, exceptions to the guest limits and overnight guest policy can be made by Residential Life & Housing.  It is the student's responsibility to be proactive and contact Residential Life & Housing at least two business days prior to the guest's anticipated arrival if an exception is being requested.

Parent and Family Member Guests

Parents or family members who come to visit the student are expected to participate in the same registration process as all other guests.  For visitors who are minors and are within the guidelines of the Minors Policy, the parent can vouch for the minor who may not have any identification.      

Religious Observances

Students who do not carry their keys or ID on days of religious observance (e.g. the Sabbath) must inform Residential Life & Housing and be placed on a campus-wide list, so they may be provided with appropriate flexibility on their days of religious observance.  If any student has a religious observance that impacts the Guest Policy, and the concern is not addressed via this policy, the student should contact Residential Life.

When entering residence halls on the day of religious observance, the student must give the Access Attendant their name and seven-digit Barnard ID number.  The Attendant will check the resident name and number against a campus-wide roster of students who may be granted flexibility with the Guest Policy on their day of religious observance.  Only those persons whose names are on the roster will be allowed to proceed.  If a Barnard student's (or CU resident of a Barnard residence hall) name is not on the list, they should sign up for the Sabbath List on the Res Life Web Portal (  Only Barnard and Columbia students living in Barnard residence halls will be placed on the roster.  Only keys and an ID may be left at the front desk area; no other personal items will be held.  Students must request the key box from the AA, which will be located behind the desk.  Students must accept full responsibility for any key(s) and/or ID left at the front desk.  All guests of religious observers must be met by the resident and be signed in by the desk staff.  If the guest is also observing the same religious day, they will not be required to leave an ID, but must properly check-in with the desk staff.  Students who are observing religious days or holidays may not leave a personal guest list at the front desk in lieu of coming to the front desk to escort guests to their room/suite.

Guests Who Are Minors

Please see

Babysitting Policy

Students may not use the residence halls in order to provide babysitting services.  If residents of Cathedral Gardens are providing babysitting service for faculty members who lives in College housing, they must do so within the faculty members' apartment.