I want to check the plagiarism among the students work. I have student's assignments and looking forward if I can make some settings in Turnitin to test the plagiarism only among student's work. I have simple PDF documents. I am okay to check plagiarism both ways i.e. with the internet sources and among the student's work. But the latter is most important. Also, I do not want to submit the work to the repository. How is this possible? Any help is appreciated. Thanks

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    Is the scale so impossible that you can't just read their work? – Buffy Apr 8 at 12:28
  • Its not about that. I want to get a report out of this to see the level of plagiarism. Also, what if there is a large number of students? – seou1 Apr 8 at 12:29
  • Scale is a problem. But plagiarism can be more sophisticated than an AI can catch. Simple copying, yes, but not misattribution of ideas. Artificial Intelligence is certainly artificial. The other, not so much. You are likely to get both false positives and false negatives. – Buffy Apr 8 at 12:47
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    @Buffy However, in cases of plagiarism by misattribution or lack of attribution of ideas (as opposed to misattribution or lack of attribution of specific text or images), most institutions' disciplinary regulations recognise the "it's the common knowledge of the discipline and therefore doesn't need a citation" defence. And since one could argue that everything a first- or second-year undergraduate is asked to write about is the common knowledge of the discipline, it's really only direct copying of text or images that can lead to a successful "prosecution" of a student at that stage. – Daniel Hatton Apr 8 at 15:09
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    @DanielHatton, my worry is that, by conflating plagiarism and copying in the minds of students, they will emerge with a flawed view of what is allowable. Many (many) questions here seem to imply that an OP believes that by paraphrasing they avoid plagiarism. I've tried to dispel that in many (many) posts. Most, but not all, student work is "common knowledge" and not subject to plagiarism rules, or, more correctly, it is obvious if someone misattributes common knowledge to themselves. But they need to know that the "essence" of plagiarism isn't copying a particular expression. ... – Buffy Apr 8 at 15:36

As far as I remember (it's about 20 months since I last used Turnitin), the only way Turnitin can check for plagiarism in which the source is another student assignment is if that other student assignment has been placed in the repository. So you can either choose to keep your students' assignments out of the repository, or check for student-to-student copying, but not both.

  • So, are you suggesting I add the student's work to the repository and then submit each student's work individually? So, the first students work will be analyzed against the already present material, the 2nd student's work will be checked against online material + first student's work and hence nth student will be tested against n-1 students and online material. Is that right? Once done, can I then remove the content from the repository? – seou1 Apr 8 at 15:30
  • @seou1 Well, doing all that manually after the students have already submitted the work would be an enormous hassle. In the setup in which I was working, the students triggered the Turnitin submission and repository upload themselves, as an integral part of uploading their work to the relevant Moodle "assignment" activity. If you're triggering the Turnitin submission, rather than the students triggering it themselves, be careful both of public law on data protection and of Turnitin's terms of use, esepcially with respect to any students under the age of 18... – Daniel Hatton Apr 8 at 15:48
  • ... and no, as far as I know, once you've put something in the repository, you can't remove it. – Daniel Hatton Apr 8 at 15:49

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