The University subscribes to Turnitin, an online service which enables the text-matching of submitted texts against an extensive library of internet pages, journals, periodicals and student essays previously submitted. It is a tool used in preventing plagiarism and improving writing. Turnitin produces an originality report which indicates the percentage of text matched, i.e. the percentage that is thought to have been copied as well as the suspected sources. Turnitin is integrated into Moodle: Turnitin assignments can be set up in any module and can also be used through the Moodle assignment tool. Staff can require that coursework be submitted via Turnitin, or can upload students' work for checking on an ad hoc basis. Students can use Turnitin at any time to check their own work via the Test Your Text Moodle page.
Originality reports are not an absolute indication of plagiarism as they must be interpreted in context. Turnitin can help academics identify plagiarism in students’ assignments and locate the sources of the plagiarised material. The analysis of a student’s work produced by Turnitin is not used by the University as proof that material is plagiarised, but to indicate that there is a suspicion of plagiarism. Plagiarism is then identified through academic judgement within a discipline specific context.
Turnitin offers related services such as online marking using its Feedback Studio tool, which allows mark-up and commenting on submitted documents.
There is no obligation for schools to use Turnitin and practice is varied across the University. However, schools that use the software have a policy on its use which is made clear to students. Students’ work is retained solely for the purpose of comparison with other work submitted.
more about Turnitin from the "Talking of Teaching" blog
more about Turnitin from the "Learning technology" blog
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