Pregnancy Tests

*Pandemic Update*

As with other McMaster Student Union (MSU) services, the Student Health Education Centre (SHEC) closed on March 13th for the remainder of the school year. Please see the MSU's statement regarding this decision here.

Stay tuned to SHEC's social media channels to see how several MSU services will be teaming up to continue offering students free health resources, including pregnancy tests, during the upcoming virtual semester. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter and like our Facebook Page so you never miss a thing!

About the Test

To access one of our free pregnancy tests, drop by our space any time we are open or anonymously order one of our tests online to pick it up at an undisclosed location on-campus.

Volunteers will ask if you want to do the test in the space with a volunteer or take it home.

  • Having a volunteer help you with the test is a great way to get support, resources, and have questions answered! 
  • If you decide to take your test home, follow the instructions written below or watch the video below for instructions on how to conduct the test properly, as well as other information about the test, how to access it, and what to expect in a kit.

Pregnancy Test Instructions

The following test will look for the human chorionic gonadotropin (hGC) hormone in your urine. This hormone is produced after sperm attaches to uterine lining. The detection of this hormone is a quick, easy first indicator of pregnancy.

Step 0: Verify that it has been at least 12 days since possible conception. If it has been less than 12 days, the test will not be effective. There are currently not enough hormones present in your urine to be detected. Please return to this test once you’ve passed the 12 day mark. 

Step 1: Urinate into the clean, dry container provided. Put on the lid after this step and move to a location where you can comfortably set the container down before reopening it. 

Step 2: Open the test packaging and dip the strip into the urine with the pink arrow head pointing downwards. Immerse the strip for at least 10 seconds before taking it out.

Important! Do not dip the strip past the line labeled MAX and do not peel off the plastic film on the front of the strip or else the results will be invalid!

Step 3: Close the container lid tightly and place the strip on top, with the marked side facing upwards. 

Step 4: Wait at least 5 minutes for the results. You may want to set a timer or a stopwatch to ensure that you let enough time pass before reading the results. 

Step 5: Check the results against the reference image below. Once you’re finished, flush the urine down the toilet, seal the container tightly, then discard the container and testing strip in the recycling or trash.

hCG urine testing strip results reference image.

  1. Two Lines: "Positive" or pregnant.

  2. One Line: "Negative" or not pregnant.

  3. No Lines: "Invalid" or testing error.

If you received an invalid result with no lines, then the strip was not sufficiently immersed in the urine; repeat steps 3-5 with the same strip. 

Note: If you received an invalid result with no control line, then the test is invalid and you should try using a new test strip the following day. 

After the Test 

If the results are negative, feel free to pick up another pregnancy test in a week or so if your period still does not arrive or you're still worried.

If the results are positive, it is recommended that you have a blood test as soon as possible to confirm the results with a care provider. This test also looks for the hGC hormone, but is more conclusive than a urine test as it will indicate whether there are other health-related reasons for your elevated hGC levels. For this reason, it is important that you consult with a care provider at your earliest convenience if your test results are positive. After that, it's up to you what next steps you take!

Please refer to the list of resources below that are meant to help you navigate this news and any further steps you want to take. If none of these are a right fit for you, email us at shec@msu.mcmaster.ca where you can confidentiality discuss other support options with our Coordinator.


Pregnancy Supports 

Access Line by Action Canada for Sexual Health & Rights

  • A 24/7 toll-free sexual & reproductive health information line

Options Clinic Finder by Sex Sense

  • A toll-free sexual health information line and online clinic locator for those located in British Columbia or Yukon

Pregnancy Info by the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (SOGC)

What is a Midwife booklet by the SHORE Centre

Student Wellness Centre
905-525-9140 ext. 27700
PGCLL 210/201

Hamilton Sexual Health Clinics
4 locations.
Downtown Clinic: David Braley Health Science Centre
100 Main Street West, 3rd Floor

Planned Parenthood Toronto
36 Prince Arthur Avenue
Toronto, ON M5R 1A9 

The Sexual Health, Options, Resources & Education (SHORE) Centre
235 King St E #130
Kitchener, ON N2G 4N5

Abortion & Emergency Contraceptive Supports

What's Next For Me by Women’s College Hospital - University of Toronto

Intrauterine Contraception Clinic locator by Rapid Access IUC Centres of Excellence (RAICE)

Choice Connect by the SHORE Centre

Access Line by Action Canada for Sexual Health & Rights

  • A 24/7 toll-free sexual & reproductive health information line

Options Clinic Finder by Sex Sense

  • A toll-free sexual health information line and clinic locator for those located in British Columbia or Yukon

Hamilton Health Sciences – Abortion Services

List of Clinics & Hospitals (pdf) by Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada (ARCC)


Adoption Options - the SHORE Centre

  • Includes a breakdown of the different pathways for private or public adoption in Ontario, contact information for various organizations, and access to an adoption counsellor.

The Children’s Aid Society of Hamilton
The Poscor Centre for Children & Families
26 Arrowsmith Road
Hamilton, ON L8E 4H8 


HART Fertility Centre
1057 Main St West Hamilton, Ontario
L8S 1B7

Contraception & STBBI Prevention Information

Sex and U - SOGC


Contact Details

Sydney Cumming (She/Her)
905.525.9140 ext. 22041

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