Turnitin Guide For Instructors: Web and D2L


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Instructors at have access to Turnitin’s plagiarism prevention system to deter plagiarism and promote academic integrity. This guide provides basic introduction to Turnitin and how to use it from the Turnitin Web site or from within Desire2Learn (D2L). Included are instructions for Quick Submit, the easiest way to use Turnitin on an individual paper without the time-consuming process of having to fully enroll an entire class in Turnitin.

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Turnitin Guide For Instructors: Web and D2L

  1. 1. Turnitin Guide for Instructors Using Turnitin and Other Tools to Detect and Prevent Plagiarism by Ed Sadowski Arapahoe Community College Library Littleton, ColoradoRevised 2012
  2. 2. Turnitin Guide for InstructorsTable of ContentsAssistance and training materials for faculty...next pageWhat is Turnitin? How does it work?...1Accessing Turnitin: website and D2L Setting up Turnitin on the Turnitin website...2 Using Quick Submit...3 Setting up Turnitin within D2L...4Plagiarism detection techniques Rapid response plagiarism detection...5 Using Google (Google to the rescue)…6 Pointers for “quickie” plagiarism detection...7Plagiarism prevention Educating the student and other classroom tips...8 Student submissions of drafts as a plagiarism teaching tool...9Resources to help the student with Turnitin Websites with information and tutorials...9 Student guide to a plagiarism checkup...9 What does my Turnitin™ Originality Report mean?...9 Plagiarism tutorials...10 Free plagiarism checks...10 Checklist for understanding the Originality Reports...10 Some frequently asked questions...11
  3. 3. Assistance and training materials for instructors> Contact Turnitin support by clicking Helpdesk within Turnitin.> Turnitin training material on the Turnitin.com site : click Helpwithin Turnitin to access help topics. Within the assignment in-box, click View Training Material for manuals and videos. Thesame training material is available under Training.
  4. 4. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 1 mitted to Turnitin Commercial databases of online jour-USING TURNITIN TO PREVENT nal articles and periodicals (ProQuest)PLAGIARISM How does Turnitin work?This guide is for instructors who have access to Access through Desire2Learn (D2L) and Turnitin web-Turnitin’s plagiarism prevention system to deter plagia- siterism and promote academic integrity. Instructors may use Turnitin through D2L or through the Turnitin website. Though an instructor can use eitherBelow you will find a basic introduction to Turnitin and method to access Turnitin, it is strongly recommendedhow to use it from the from within Desire2Learn (D2L) that an instructor make the decision on which methodor, optionally, from the Turnitin website. Included also to use before a semester begins because these two op-are instructions for Quick Submit, the easiest way to use tions do not work in conjunction with each other. In oth-Turnitin on an individual paper without the time- er words, student submissions submitted through D2Lconsuming process of having to fully enroll an entire cannot be seen by the instructor who may also have aclass in Turnitin. Also included are tips for preventing Turnitin account directly through the Turnitin Web siteand detecting plagiarism. and vice versa. You may find that using Turnitin directly through D2L isWhat is Turnitin? the most efficient option as you can simultaneously useTurnitin helps to “plagiarism proof” assignments. D2L to post other course materials, such as lecture“Turnitin does not detect plagiarism but, rather, gener- notes, a syllabus, or student grades. In addition, manyates a similarity index indicating text matches to the students at ACC are familiar with logging into D2L andTurnitin databases. Instructors and their students can using the tools. You can use both options for multipleuse that information to determine if there are issues courses or switch back and forth between semesters,with intentional or unintentional plagiarism.” (Turnitin but the two methods of using Turnitin are not linked inblog) any way.Turnitin helps prevent plagiarism by comparing studentpapers and assignments against the following sources The Turnitin tool is similar to other tools in D2L, andand indicating matches with existing content: grade book columns are automatically created when you Archived and current text and pages on the Internet create a Turnitin assignment. The Turnitin grades work All other student submissions that have been sub- in conjunction with other grades in D2L, so a calculated,
  5. 5. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 2end-of-semester grade is easy to obtain. If using the You must first register with Turnitin as an instructor. Towebsite, you can keep a database of Turnitin grades via do so, Click New Users on the upper right page atthe website. turnitin.com 1. Enter the administrator-provided account number.The basics of how Turnitin works 2. Enter the account join password. An instructor makes the decision to use Turnitin Follow the sign-up instructions through D2L or the Turnitin Web site There are two ways of using Turnitin: (1) the full fea- The instructor creates an assignment through the tures and (2) Quick Submit. Turnitin Web site or through D2L The instructor or students submit papers to the To fully access Turnitin requires establishing classes and Turnitin assignment you created assignments, then signing up students. Once the instruc- Turnitin compares the text in the paper against text tor establishes a class, instructors can sign up students on the Internet, other student submissions, and com- or students can join themselves. Instructors can submit mercial databases (as listed above) papers to Turnitin themselves or instructors can have Turnitin generates an Originality Report for each stu- students submit their own papers–in either case, in- dent submission and highlights any text that dupli- structors need to create a Turnitin assignment first. cates text found in other sources Other features of Turnitin include Grademark, Gradebook, Peer Review, Digital Portfolio, Calendar, Dis-The instructor uses this information to decide if the du- cussion Boards, and Libraries.plicated text is plagiarized. In many cases, students willhave properly cited the duplicated text, and this dupli- For explanations of all these features, manuals, videos,cated text may not indicate plagiarism at all. The instruc- and help topics are available on the Turnitin site andtor remains the arbiter of what constitutes plagiarism. linked from within Turnitin (see Assistance and Training Materials on last page of this handout).Below are the instructions for getting started with the Quick Submit is a fast and easy method for occasionaltwo methods of Turnitin access: through the Turnitin plagiarism checks and a good way to try out Turnitin be-Web site and through D2L. fore using its full features. Whether using Quick Submit or the full features, you will have to know how to use the plagiarism reports (“Originality Reports”)—explainedTurnitin website access in the Turnitin manuals and videos.(To use Turnitin without D2L) Instructions for Quick Submit (non-established classes)
  6. 6. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 3are as follows: be treated as plagiarism, mistaking the second paper1. Start at your instructor homepage. This is the page as a plagiarism of the first paper. A way to avoid this you start with after you log in with your e-mail ad- problem is to create the assignment as a Revision As- dress and password from the Turnitin homepage at signment. turnitin.com. 11. Click the submit button.2. Quick Submit will not appear as an option until you 12. Under submit paper, make selections for your sub- activate it. To activate Quick Submit, click the User mission. Info tab 13. First select type of upload with the pulldown menu3. Under Account Settings on the right side, change ac- under submit a paper by: file upload; cut and paste; tivate Quick Submit to Yes. zip file. If you are uploading a document stored in4. Click the large Submit button on the bottom to cre- your computer, select file upload. You will then click ate the change. the browse button below to select the document5. When you go back to your main page again, you will after you have filled in the name of the student and now notice a Quick Submit button on the left side or title of the paper. If you are submitting some text on the top. from a document, you may select cut and paste.6. Click this Quick Submit button to enable you to up- 14. You will now upload the paper for quick submit. Click load anything you want checked. the browse button to locate the document file from a7. The quick submit inbox will appear. This inbox con- floppy disk (A:), computer hard drive (C:), CD (D:), or tains all papers you will have plagiarism reports flash drive (E:). Or, you can cut and paste from the (“Originality Reports”) made with quick submit (color submission pull-down menu. coded for levels of plagiarism). 15. Double click the file you wish to upload, or select the8. To quick submit a paper, click the submit paper file then click the open. button on the upper right. 16. Click the submit button.9. Under customize your search, check off any or all of 17. A box will appear asking, “Is this the paper you want the sources to be checked for plagiarism: search the to submit?” The text of the paper will be displayed. Internet; search student papers; search periodicals, Click yes, submit. journals, and publications. 18. A “digital receipt” will appear with the paper title,10. If you might be re-submitting the same paper again author, and ID. If you wish to submit another paper, (revised by a student), do not check off search stu- click submit again. dent papers. If you do check off search student pa- 19. To see your Originality Reports, go back to the quick pers, your second submission of the same paper will submit inbox (click inbox).
  7. 7. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 420. An Originality Report will be generated in a few ity and report frequency. minutes (the report icon will be grayed out until the report is completed, then the icon color will display, Thereafter, all assignments submitted will be analyzed by indicating the proportion of matches). If the gray Turnitin and Plagiarism Reports will be generated, viewable does not change color, click the refresh button of and accessible from within the Dropbox folders. your Web browser.Submitting papers for established classes More detailed instructionsClick the submit icon next to the desired assignment onyour class homepage (after you have set up classes and (from D2L Wiki from University of Wisconsin-assignments and signed up students). Instructions for Oshkosh, at idea.uwosh.edu/D2Lwiki – go downsubmitting a paper are basically the same as above. the page for Turnitin info) 1. Go to Dropbox in the navigation. 2. Select New FolderSetting up Turnitin within D2L (NOTE: Dropboxes do not have to be new to enableTurnitin automatically works with assignments that are Turnitin, existing dropboxes can be modified by editingsubmitted within D2L the folder.) 3. Give your dropbox a name – usually the name of the> Log in to D2L assignment 4. Check the box labeled Plagiarism Detection> To use Turnitin with D2L, you must first enable Plagia- Fill in additional fields as necessary (How do I use therism Detection. dropbox…)When you create a New Folder and Folder Properties, 5. Modify Plagiarism Detection Options as necessary.check off Enable for this Folder (How Does PlagiarismDetection Work?).When you enable Plagiarism Detection, an options areaappears at the bottom of the Edit Folder page. Here youcan enable detailed Originality Reports for Dropbox sub-missions and adjust options that control end user visibil-
  8. 8. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 5  Index files for Plagiarism Detection: Check this box if you would like the students’ papers to Turnitin’s data- base.  Click the Save button Rapid Response Plagiarism Detection Instant coffee. Minute rice. Turnitin Quick Submit. Google. Generate Originality Reports: check this box to ena- There are the “quicker solution,” shortcut options toble Turnitin’s originality reports tasks we are faced with. Allow submitters to see Originality Reports: checkthis box to let students view their report Checking a student’s paper for plagiarism is no excep- Automatic plagiarism detection on all submissions: tion.check this box to have Turnitin generate reports for all An instructor can sign up the whole class under Turnitin,submissions. and every paper routinely gets the Turnitin scrutinty, a Identify individual submissions for plagiarism detec- report generated to show the percentage levels of legiti-tion: This option is not functional, an originality report macy, or “originality,” in the paper.will be generated for every submission Check Submissions Against: Or the instructor can pick and choose the occasional pa- Use Paper Database: This will compare the student’s per that looks suspicious and check it for plagiarism. Thepaper to Turnitin’s large database of papers submitted simplest way is to simply google some phrases from theby other students from around the country. paper and see if it guiltily matches something on a web- Current and archive internet: This will compare the site. Another relatively simple way is to use Turnitin’sstudents’ papers to text on the internet. Quick Submit. Periodicals, journals, & publications: This will com-pare the students’ papers to articles available in a varie- To use the Turnitin Quick Submit, the whole class doesty of online databases.
  9. 9. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 6not have to be set up within Turnitin. All that is required Several instructors have told me they used Google tois that the instructor be registered (“joined”) within catch plagiarism that Turnitin missed.Turnitin, and that the Turnitin Quick Submit option is en-abled. Wow, is that an eye opener. Turnitin is not perfect? Turnitin is not everything it’s cracked up to be?The downside of using something like Google or QuickSubmit is that it’s less labor intensive for the busy in- Well, yes.structor pressed for time than using the full-featured Why? What gives? Well, let’s cut to the chase. Here’s anTurnitin. Saving time with the abbreviated plagiarism excerpt from an economics professor’s blog that I found,checkups using Google or Quick Submit means that yes, by googling:many other cases of plagiarism might be missed by notusing the full Turnitin. A glaring case of plagiarism may …teachers might think, “I’m using Turnitin, so I don’tcatch the instructor’s eye, but less obvious cases will es- have to watch out for plagiarists.” The instructor quotedcape notice. on Turnitin’s website certainly thinks so, implicitly argu- ing that Turnitin is a perfect substitute for her own inves-Turnitin users and non-users: tigations using Google. Not surprisingly, Turnitin encour-Google to the rescue ages this belief. On its website—right next to her quote—Turnitin advertises that it has crawled and in-Plagiarism sleuths: don’t throw Google out with the dexed “14+ billion web pages.” Choosing betweenbathwater just yet. Turnitin and instructor investigations seems like a no-I’ve gotten feedback from instructors about their use of brainer.Google to detect student paper plagiarism (pasting in But wait, how many web pages are there on the Inter-some parts of a student paper into Google may identify net?the Web pages the text came from). A few years ago, Google announced that it had crawledMy stance about Google for plagiarism detection has and indexed a trillion web pages. That makes TurnItIn’sbeen, Well, now that we’ve got Turnitin, the proprietary crawlers look puny, having searched and indexed onlyWeb-based plagiarism detection service, we won’t need 1.4 percent as much of the Internet as Google’s.Google anymore (and that’s how instructors probablyview this modern marvel called Turnitin). I’m not here to debunk Turnitin—I’m one of its strongest supporters. But we have to be realistic that no singleWrong. tool is perfect or infallible. I teach this to students about
  10. 10. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 7information literacy—trust, but verify the information output?). Sometimes it could be just a sentenceyou find. Take everything, no matter how authoritative, or paragraph that is “different,” a direct quote orwith a grain of salt. poor paraphrase that is not credited.Instructors who use Turnitin should consider it just one > If you decide to google for a quickie check, find angadget in their toolbox. odd or distinctive phrase in the paper to throw in the search engine and see what results come up.Google is a good supplement to Turnitin, or, for those Beginning sentences from papers sometimeswho don’t use Turnitin, a useful tool by itself. Remem- yield good hits. Place phrases within quotes forber, though, that Google will identify lots of text from best results. Additionally, use Yahoo! and otherWeb pages, but little or nothing from periodical articles search engines if Google comes up with nothing.and books. Thus Google is incomplete without Turnitin. (See the discussion of Google as a detection toolAnd vice versa. on the next page.)And even Google is not all-encompassing. No singlesearch engine can index the entire vastness of the Inter- > If Turnitin fails to find the elusive text, even search-net. That’s why, along with Google, the savvy plagiarism ing through its designated library database, likesleuth will use other search engines—such as Bing, Ya- ProQuest, try a keyword search of the paper’shoo!, and Yippy. passages in other library databases.I might also mention some free “plagiarism checkers” What if, after trying the above tools, your plagiarismthat can be useful: Dustball and Plagium. check is unsuccessful?These free tools are useful not just for teachers, but also You feel certain the paper or sections of the paper arefor students who wish to check their work before they not the student’s work. The search engines and eventurn it in. Turnitin have not located elsewhere the text in question. Keep in mind that no search engine or even Turnitin is 100 percent effective in detecting plagiarism in the vast-Pointers for “quickie” plagiarism detection: ness of the publishing world. > Be on the lookout for shifts in writing style and Interrogating a student can be effective in eliciting an- quality (does a suspicious paper suddenly deviate swers. Here are some ways one can question a student, in certain stylistic ways from the student’s usual as suggested by Montgomery College Libraries:
  11. 11. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 8 Give the student a chance to prove that the paper is a portfolio can completely prevent plagiarism, accordingnot plagiarized. to this site: bedfordstmartins.com/technotes/ workshops/avoidplagiarism.htm. Quiz the student and see if he or she can definesome of the words in the paper. A question such as: Still yet another way to help prevent plagiarism is to al-“Why did you use ‘egregious here?” can be enlighten- low a student to use a plagiarism detection service such as Turnitin or free websites to run a preliminary check;ing. seeing that there are plagiarism problems in the paper, Copy some sentences from the paper and leave whether intentionally-created or inadvertent, will per-blanks for some important words. If the student cannot suade the student to use more care in the preparationfill in the blanks with the word used in the paper itself or of papers. A student can be allowed to submit a draft to Turnitin to identify “originality” problems. Turnitin alsoa synonym, the student did not write the paper. has an inexpensive service for students to use before it Ask questions about one of the sources used in the is submitted to Turnitin, called “WriteCheck,” on theirpaper. “This article by X looks fascinating, why did you plagiarism.org site. A couple of free plagiarism checkingchoose it? Can I see a copy?” sites are available for the same kind of preliminary check by students: plagium.com and The Plagiarism Checker.Ask the student how he or she searched for the infor-mation. Ask what database they used. In addition, a Turnitin blog on “plagiarism proofing” suggests the following to help prevent plagiarism:Plagiarism prevention  Emphasize the recursiveness of writing. • Require significantly revised multiple drafts.Remember also, it’s best to prevent plagiarism than try- • Break an assignment into parts that are to be turneding to detect it. in at different stages of the creation process: pre- writing, drafting, revising, reflecting.A lot of plagiarism can be achieved by simply educating (The above three pointers are from Colorado State Uni-the student about plagiarism and the power of Turnitin. versity’s Writing@CSU.)Turnitin’s site plagiarism.org is a good place to start forstudents to learn about plagiarism. “This idea of plagiarism proofing assignments makesAnother deterrent: require students to keep a sense, suggesting that students are less likely to leave“portfolio” that logs and records research. Keeping such the work to the last minute—when research and writing skills may deteriorate or students might be tempted to
  12. 12. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 9use writing that is not their own—if they are engaged in Resources to help the studentwriting as a process,” according to the Turnitin blog. with TurnitinStudent submissions of drafts as a plagiarism teach-ing tool Websites with information and tutorialsTurnitin allows multiple submissions of papers by stu-dents, from draft to final revision. Students can upload > turnitin.com/static/training/student.phptheir own papers to Turnitin for Originality Reports and (includes video, articles, student manual about usingsee their own Originality Reports. Originality Reports are Turnitin and Originality Reports)useful for editing papers that include too many quotes > umuc.edu/library/tutorials/turnitin/and paraphrases and not enough original analysis and originalityreports.shtml video: Reading and Under-comment. Thus the Originality Reports are useful to fac- standing Turnitin Originality Reportsulty as a tool to teach students to use proper citation, > Plagiarism.org (Turnitin’s portal for plagiarism infor-highlighting the need for more student originality. mation)An instructor can, for instance, facilitate two submis-sions, setting up two separate assignments for the samepaper. The two submissions could be named as follows:Paper 1—First Draft; and Paper 2—Final Revision. (Note:do not use the pound sign (#) or any other special char- What does my Turnitin™acters—only letters and numbers—as an error messagewill be created when attempting to download a student Originality Report mean?paper.) A checklist for self-evaluation Adapted from Edinburgh Napier University Student guide to a plagiarism checkup The following guide (available on the ACC Library Re- search Assistance page is designed for students, but also
  13. 13. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 10helpful for instructors to add to their understanding of Free plagiarism checks: If you don’t have access toplagiarism and Turnitin. Turnitin, use these sites to do a plagiarism check: the free Plagiarism Checker (dustball.com/cs/Why a plagiarism check? The savvy student does a plagiarism.checker) and Plagium.com, or the inexpen-“spell check” before turning in a paper to catch errors. sive WriteCheck.comIt’s educational too, helping to teach you how to spellbetter. So why not do a plagiarism check on your paperalso? Checklist for understanding the Orig-A plagiarism check will help you see where you didn’t inality Reportproperly give credit to the sources of your information.Did you leave out quotation marks to identify direct Use this to evaluate and to get an understanding ofquotes? Did you fail to properly paraphrase (put in your what the Originality Report means. Doing this at theown words) the information you are using? Did you ac- “draft” stage gives you a chance to take further actioncurately identify (cite) the sources of the information to revise your work in response to the Report.and ideas you are using? Check the following, as appropriate:Plagiarism tutorials: First, are you clear about what pla-giarism is? Plagiarism can cause you to fail your course STEP ONEand even more—deliberate plagiarism is a serious aca- The Similarity Index is below 5%___ above 5%___demic offense. If your Similarity Index is below 5%, you need to take noThese tutorials will make it clear what plagiarism is all further action—your Report is acceptable.about:> You Quote It, You Note It! If your Similarity Index is above 5%, there may be is-library.acadiau.ca/tutorials/plagiarism sues with your work. Proceed to Step 2.> USM Plagiarism Tutorial: STEP TWOlib.usm.edu/legacy/plag/plagiarismtutorial.php You have nothing to worry about if the colored text in> iParadigms plagiarism information site: the Report is mostly made up of the title of your paper.Plagiarism.org. ___> A plagiarism portal: bit.ly/plagiarism2
  14. 14. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 11Excluding the title should bring the Similarity Index to The colored text, excluding titles, cited quotes and refer-below 5%. If this doesn’t explain the Report, proceed ences, makes up a significant portion of your paper.___to Step Three. There are more than three paragraphs in any one col-STEP THREE or.___You probably have nothing to worry about if the coloredtext in the Report is made up of any combination of the The majority of the text in any one color is un-following: changed.___references___ short sentences or fragments from a va-riety of sources___ cited quotes___However, if this is not the case, you may need helpwith correct referencing or paraphrasing.Proceed to Step Four if Steps Two/Three do not explain Some frequently asked questions:the majority of colored text in your Report. What percentages in the Originality Report are “safe”?STEP FOUR There are no clear-cut rules, with some variation of per-Your Report is probably borderline if the majority of the centages to be expected within an acceptable range.colored text is in paragraphs with a few words changed Turnitin only identifies and tabulates matches, many offrom the original___ and from a variety of sources___ which are normal and legitimate, and the instructor has to interpret these matches to determine which ones in-If you have checked off any of these, it is likely you have dicate problems that should not occur. Approximatetrouble with paraphrasing. rules of thumb are as follows. Zero percent would indi- cate the student has not done enough reading or refer-If Steps 2-4 do not account for your report, proceed to encing of other sources. Excluding cited quotes and ref-Step Five. erences, matches under five percent is a safe level. Un- der 15 percent is probably acceptable, or borderline.STEP FIVE Continuous blocks of uncited matching text indicateYour Report shows your work was probably plagiarized if problems. Over 25 percent is probably too high (yellow,any of the following apply:
  15. 15. Turnitin Guide for Instructors 12orange, red indices).Isn’t it normal to have matches that are not really pla-giarism, and what kinds of matches are considered ac-ceptable? Yes, matching of text in itself is not an indica-tion of plagiarism, as legitimate matches are normal,and requires interpretation. The following are “normal”and therefore acceptable matches. The title of the sub-mitted paper, or parts of the title. Cited quotations andstudent-generated references (bibliography).(Quotations and references can be automatically exclud-ed in the Originality Report operation.) Proper nouns(names of people, places, things). Commonly used jar-gon and terminology. Common phrases, causing match-es of parts of sentences.What kinds of matches are considered “red flags”?Matches consisting of sentences, or large parts of sen-tences, within paragraphs, or entire paragraphs, that arenot within quotations are problematic. Even when thistext is cited, it means the student is inadequately para-phrasing the source (the information is not properly ren-dered in the student’s own words).Here are some guides to proper paraphrasing:> Plagiarism.org >>>> FindingDulcinea.com >>>