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C12-01 TurnItIn

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Software Profile

ID C12-01
Product Turnitin
Company iParadigms Europe
6-8 Charlotte Square
Newcastle upon Tyne
United Kingdom
Web Site
Software Type Online
Costs There are a lot of licencing options. You have to contact the company to get a licence that fits to your needs.
Test Date 2012-04-09


Ranking for all tests: 4
Ranking for Source Code Test: 6
Ranking for Text Test: 1
Summary: Partially Useful


TurnItIn, a system offered by the American company iParadigms, LLC, has three different roles defined: administrator, teacher, and student. A course needs to be set up by the administrator and assigned to a teacher. The teacher sets up a hand-in assignment within this course that requires a check mark for “originality report required”. The students are then given a code and they upload their work using this code, or the teacher can upload for them.

Students cannot, however, upload multiple files or a ZIP file, although the teacher is able to do so. This is a problem for programming assignments, as they often consist of multiple files. TurnItIn will not accept files with an ending of .java, although .pdf, .doc, and .txt are allowed. The java files had to be renamed to .txt, but still two were rejected as some were less than 20 words (typical for the simple main class that starts a program). So the system is useless for this task.

There is no side-by-side report on screen. Parts of the text are marked in red, that means that these portions are in other sources. If one clicks on those passages, a new window opens up. Unfortunately, instead of giving the file name or the author, it just states “Submitted by the HTW Berlin on …”. This makes more work for trying to find out who is involved if a collusion is found. The reports can be easily stored, but again a side-by-side report is missing.

The system was given full points (28/28) for all of the text test cases, as they were all identified as collusion, even though it was difficult to obtain their names. It was not bothered by changes in the text, different fonts, umlauts, or the homoglyphs. For the program code, however, since no structural comparison was done, not quite a third of the points were reached (18/63).

In summary, this system is well-equipped for finding text collusion in student papers, although it would be useful to make it easier for a teacher to see which papers are involved in the collusion without having to request the intervention of an administrator. But it is useless for finding code collusion.

Company Statement

„[…] you mention that there is no way of viewing both texts side-by-side, however this is not the case. When you click on the text on the left and the window comes up, then you can see another link called (in German) – Ansicht gesamte Quelle  – as can be seen on your screenshot 1. This then loads the full text in the right hand panel. on page 5 of this guide it describes it in more detail. Turnitin has always supported side-by-side comparison. I thought we had discussed this before, however it maybe was only related to iThenticate. Can you amend you Turnitin section to reflect this?“


Screenshot 1: Split Screen

Screenshot 2: Overview

Screenshot 3: Upload Dialog


official website