Turnitin: Feedback Studio and Similarity Reports
What is Turnitin?
Turnitin is an online web-based program that works by comparing electronically submitted papers to billions of pages of content located on the Internet and proprietary databases as well as the work of other students whose papers have also been submitted into the system. This software is used by many Universities throughout Australia and internationally.
Students can view the Similarity Report (if this option has been selected by teaching staff), as well as feedback and grades entered into the Turnitin assignment by staff. Access to all of these options by students may be date restricted. The simplest way to view this information is via the Turnitin assignment.
Access a submitted Turnitin assignment
- In the LMS open the subject that contains the Turnitin assignment.
- Navigate to the page where the assignment is located.
- Click the View / Complete link.
- The dates of the assignment will be displayed. You will only be able to access the feedback once the Post date has passed. The Similarity score (%) may be displayed if that option was selected by your teaching staff.
- Click the View button to display your submitted assignment.
- If the View button is grey, this indicates that feedback is not yet available.
- When the View button turns blue, the Post Date has passed and feedback will be visible to students.
Depending on the options selected by your teaching staff, papers submitted to Turnitin may generate a comparison document known as a Similarity Report. This report highlights the matching or non-original text within the document when compared to web pages, electronic journals and other assignment submissions made to Turnitin.
At the discretion of teaching staff, student users may be able to view the Similarity Report for their own submission to Turnitin. This is a preference that is decided by teaching staff. Your Similarity Report may be available immediately after you submit, or after the due date.
It is very important to understand that the Similarity score does NOT indicate whether plagiarism has taken place. Similarity Reports only indicate non-original text. A high score may contain legitimately cited text, and so is not a problem. Conversely, a low score may contain text that does cause concern.
To view Turnitin feedback:
- At the Assignment Inbox (see above) either click the View button, or the Similarity score (% or coloured square).
- A new window will appear containing your assignment submission, colour-coded shading where your text has been found to match other sources, a list of those sources, and the % similarity to your submitted text.
When papers are submitted into Turnitin, sections of the papers that match other sources are highlighted and identified in the Similarity Report. Turnitin does not make a judgement as to whether plagiarism has occurred. It is the responsibility of your teaching staff to determine the quality of the Similarity Report and to assess whether parts identified by Turnitin as non-original may be reasonably considered as plagiarism.
- Click the Similarity score in the right panel to see the Match overview.
- Click a match from the right side of the screen to see that text displayed and highlighted within your assignment.
- Click the flag on any highlighted text within your assignment to see identified sources displayed in a pop-up box.
- You can also select All sources (right panel) to see every source that contains the matched text. The Similarity score (the % match you receive) does not always match the sum of the sources due to overlap in similarity.
- The Filters and settings button (right panel) lets you alter the matching criteria (affects your view of the Similarity Report only).
If your paper has been graded, and the Post date of the assignment has passed, you will be able to see any comments staff have entered on your work. You will know when the Post date has passed when the View button in your Assignment Inbox turns blue.
- In the Assignment Inbox, click the blue View button to see the feedback report.
- Your submission will be displayed. Click the blue instructor feedback icon to show any comments and feedback on your assignment.
- A number grade (if applicable) will be visible on the top right of the screen.
- Text, audio and written bubble comments will be displayed on the right panel of the screen by default.
- Comments relating to particular points within the assignment will be highlighted with a comment icon e.g.
- Click any comment icon to expand it and see further details.
- If a rubric or Grading Form was used for marking, click the View Rubric button at the top of the instructor feedback panel on the right. Any in-text comments that were linked to specific rubric criteria will be shown in the rubric with a balloon icon. Click the balloon to see details.
You can download a copy of your assignment for reading offline or as a permanent record of the Similarity Report and written feedback. There are several locations inside Turnitin where you can download: each location offers options to download the ‘Originally submitted format’ (e.g. docx) and ‘Digital receipt’ (proof of submission to Turnitin).
Download options specific to particular locations are described below.
The Assignment Inbox allows you to download the paper you submitted, but does not show any Similarity Report information or feedback from teaching staff. The download icon appears at the bottom right of the Assignment Inbox screen.
When viewing your assignment in Turnitin
Allows you to download a PDF of your paper with non-original text highlighted and a summary of matches at the end of the document. The download icon appears in the panel on the right of the screen.
This guide was last updated 05 Dec 2016.
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