Technology Enhanced Learning

Using Turnitin and the Originality Report (Moodle 2013 or earlier)

Note: The following information applies to Moodle 2013 and earlier. For the latest documentation on the Originality Report, please refer to Viewing the Originality Report.

The originality report shows the amount of matching text in the document with electronic sources within or scanned by Turnitin. Turnitin does not detect plagiarised work.

Turnitin searches current and archived internet pages (these are updated on a regular basis), databases of published journal articles and the Turnitin database of submitted work.

The inbox shows the original paper, the similarity index, GradeMark options etc:


Inbox view with Originality percentage displaying

The 'overall similarity index' indicated by 'similarity' shows how much matching text as a percentage of the whole document has been found. This percentage includes both correctly referenced and unacknowledged text.

Clicking on the coloured box will open the originality report which can then be viewed in two ways: 'show highest matches together' or 'show matches one at a time'. ?

Originality Reprt

Originality Report

All sources

All sources


View of all matches

This show smaller matches which may be included in sources with higher text matching. The BBC match is obscuring news/uk and news/magazine. Sometimes student papers may be obscured by higher matches.

Viewing underlying matching sources

This means you can see all possible matching sources. It can be useful to scroll through these as it is not necessarily the first source which may have been used by the student.

Examining all the sources thoroughly can be time-consuming. Use your academic judgement regarding the quality of the work before examining sources in this way. Don't forget that Turnitin will highlight all matching text, including correctly referenced work.

The possible sources often show several websites which have used related material and may also match to other student papers. If several sources indicate matches to student papers submitted in other courses/institutions, this may indicate that students are actually using a common original source and may not necessarily indicate plagiarism. If you suspect the work has been taken from another student, it is possible to request the paper. Before requesting a student paper from an external institution, check whether the sources used are common course texts or even essay bank sites.

Web match

Viewing original websites

Sources can be viewed by hovering the mouse over the source in the right hand column- an arrow appears which will show the original website highlighted as matching text in the report.

Hiding/showing sources

Sources can be exclude from the report by clicking on the Exclude Sources button (1). A list of exclude sources and the ability to display them again can be found by clicking on excluded icon (2).


Exclude sources


Curriculum Development Team - Unit for the Enhancement of Learning & Teaching - © University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000

Last Updated: 22/06/2015

Banner image courtesy David Brossard