Getting Started with Turnitin for Plagiarism Detection

Do you worry about plagiarism in your classes?

Do you get the sense that your students may not entirely grasp the rules of proper citation, attribution, and contributing their original thoughts to assignments?

Are you looking to migrate to electronic, paperless tools for providing students with feedback on their written work?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then you may be interested in Turnitin! Turnitin is an online tool that checks students’ written work for improper citation and possible plagiarism. It provides instructors with detailed information about the possible sources that students used.

As the instructor, you have the option to share this information with your students, so that they can learn from the “originality reports” Turnitin generates. In fact, you can allow students to submit drafts of their work in Turnitin before the final assignment is due so that they can improve their ability to cite sources and create original work.

Turnitin is integrated with Blackboard and so students can easily submit their papers to Turnitin (no new logins required).

Setting Up a Turnitin Assignment

To set up a Turnitin Assignment, navigate to a place in Blackboard where your assignment should be posted. Click on the Assessments button to add a Turnitin Assignment.

Select to add a Paper Assignment and fill in the requested information about your assignment. For best results, make your Post Date the day after your Start Date.

Viewing Students’ Submitted Assignments Through Turnitin

When you need to view students’ submissions or edit the assignment settings, you must use the Turnitin Assignments area under Course Tools in the Control Panel. Click on the name of the Turnitin assignment that you want to review.

Then, click on a student’s similarity score to see details about possible matching sources.

This printable download on Creating and Viewing a Turnitin Assignment (PDF) includes step-by-step details that may be helpful.

Preparing Students to Use Turnitin

Your students may not be familiar with Turnitin. If you are using Turnitin in your class, it can be helpful to provide students with resources on using this tool, such as:

You can also ask students to upload a practice assignment or draft early in the semester so they get the hang of using the tool.

If you’d like, you can provide them with the contact information for the Sheekey Writing Center, in case they want help with their writing.

Additional Faculty/Staff Resources on Turnitin and Plagiarism

The Academic Computing Team is offering a workshop on helping students with Turnitin on Thursday, September 27, 2012 at 1pm. Sign up here.

The following resources may also be useful to you:

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