Plagiarism Detection

Using Turnitin to Detect Plagiarism

Turnitin is a web application that detects plagiarism, unauthorized collaboration among students, and inappropriate use of sources. Students and faculty submit their work to course-specific folders on the site, which are then compared against a database of websites and previous paper submissions from within the course and other courses, as well as other schools and universities. Each paper receives an originality report that highlights passages similar to other sources and provides links to original sources. Students’ submissions are viewable only by the faculty member for the course.

Who can use it?

  • Turnitin is available to all current Boston University faculty and the students enrolled in their courses.
  • Students can only check their own work if they are enrolled in a course that has been set up in Turnitin by their instructor.

Turnitin in Conjunction with Blackboard

Turnitin has very user-friendly integration with Blackboard. Click here for a handout with step-by-step instructions to set up a Turnitin assignment in Blackboard Learn.

Turnitin can also be very effective in facilitating prompt feedback to students using its grading tool. For a short video on using Turnitin to promote student feedback, featuring Cassie Ryan, a TA and Instructor in PM702: Introduction to Health Policy and Management click here.


  • OriginalityCheck compares a paper’s text to a database comprised of millions of pages of digital content, archived student papers, and professional, academic and commercial journals and publications.
  • Grademark lets instructors to provide feedback with drop-and-drag marks, voice comments and rubrics.
  • PeerMark facilitates peer review exercises so students can evaluate and learn from one another’s work.