Turnitin

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A brief overview for students of the Turnitin software system

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Write Like an Academic:

Write Like an Academic Turnitin

What is Turnitin?:

What is Turnitin ? Turnitin is a plagiarism detection software. It is used by many institutions, including EMU and Warwick University. All academic work by WMG students is entered into Turnitin .

How does it work?:

How does it work? It analyses your work by comparing it with an extremely large set of databases of other published work, as well as the Internet in general.

What does it search?:

What does it search? All electronic versions of books, academic articles etc. Student essay sites All work entered by academic institutions All work entered by subscribers to the service In short, all digitally stored sources

What output does it provide?:

What output does it provide? A ‘Similarity Index’; this is a % score that shows how similar a submission is to other sources. Coloured highlighting, showing which sections are similar, and providing links to those sections for further checking. Filters to re-examine the similarity index, by removing quoted material and reference lists / bibliographies from the analysis.

What is an acceptable similarity index?:

What is an acceptable similarity index? There is no such thing as a ‘passing’, or ‘failing’ index or score. Any percentage score exceeding around 15% will be looked at very closely. Any use of individual sources exceeding 1-2% will also be looked at very closely.

Can we check our work on Turnitin?:

Can we check our work on Turnitin ? http://hbswk.hbs.edu/topics/supplychain.html Turnitin is an (expensive) ‘pay for’ service. Furthermore, without prior administrative rights, a draft work will be automatically compared with later drafts / submissions, and lead to up to a 100% similarity index. This can cause and has caused confusion.

Are there other applications we can use?:

Are there other applications we can use? http://hbswk.hbs.edu/topics/supplychain.html Yes, you will find such software on the Internet, but free versions are much less powerful, and may give you misleading results. You should use such software with care, and not rely on the results.

Can Turnitin results lead to automatic failure?:

Can Turnitin results lead to automatic failure? http://hbswk.hbs.edu/topics/supplychain.html No, the Turnitin results and output are always manually checked by the assessors against the work you have submitted. To repeat, there is no ‘pass’ / ‘fail’ score on Turnitin .

What are the consequences of a high Turnitin index?:

What are the consequences of a high Turnitin index? Your work may be given a penalty by the marker, You may fail the work in question. Your work may be referred to the official WMG Board of Examiners for consideration; as they meet only twice a year, you will then need to wait for their final recommendation. The Examiners may ask you to resubmit a new assignment, but this will depend on their evaluation of your work in the programme as a whole. Much depends on the assessors’ evaluation of the type and degree of plagiarism.

Isn’t it better then for work to be checked in Turnitin before submission? :

Isn’t it better then for work to be checked in Turnitin before submission? As mentioned, the drafts would then be analysed against the final submission, which causes another problem, since one version of your work is being compared with a later version of your work. As also mentioned, there is no ‘passing’ or ‘failing’ level as such; it is up to the assessment bodies to evaluate your work overall, bearing in mind Turnitin output. This is not a system which you can manipulate in any way to give yourself an ‘allowance’; there is no permissible degree for plagiarism.

So how should we make sure we have no problem?:

So how should we make sure we have no problem? By using your own words throughout your work By learning and always following an appropriate referencing system, such as Harvard. By learning how to paraphrase, quote and reference correctly.

Remember::

Remember: Always check and follow the conventions of the institution or publication you are writing for.

Write Like an Academic Powerpoint by John Eldridge and Nilgun Hancioglu:

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