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Turnitin is a program for checking similarities in texts. Turnitin compares written text to an extensive international database of articles, journals, books, websites, and theses, and looks for similarities between the submitted text and the sources in the database. Turnitin provides a feedback report which includes a similarity index (percentage), which demonstrates how much similarities can be found between the submitted text and the texts in Turnitin databases. By interpreting the report, it can be deduced whether the text has been plagiarised or not.

It is important to remember that similarity does not necessarily mean plagiarism! The percentage is always proportional to the length of the text. Short texts can demonstrate a higher percentage than a longer text. Quotations and reference list (bibliography) are also taken into account in the report, which also increases the similarity percentage. There is no need to aim for zero percent; it may even be impossible to achieve. There is no need to be afraid or nervous about using Turnitin! Turnitin is specifically designed to correct and assist in the writing of scientific text, as well as to expose intentional plagiarism.

Turnitin is integrated into Moodle: teachers use it to review assignments, reports or theses. Students can submit their texts to Turnitin only if the teacher has assigned a specific Turnitin assignment.

Why do you use Turnitin?

  • It helps you to write source-based text with your own words.
  • It helps you to write academically correct and fluent text.
  • The software gives you feedback from the text you write.
  • With the report you can be guided to revise your work on time.
  • The report also detects plagiarism and checking of all theses ensures equal treatment of students.

Allowed file types

Please remember to check that your submission is in a file type that can be checked for similarity. Please note that Turnitin does not work, for example, with protected Word files, or with a PDF file that contains only images of the text instead of text (you can try to copy the text from the PDF to some other place – if this won’t work,
the file most probably doesn’t contain text, but instead images of text). You can find the exact file requirements on the Turnitin help page.

AI recognition add-on

Turnitin's scientific writing programme has added an AI recognition add-on that is visible to teachers. The add-on searches for AI-generated text. Similarity detection in scientific writing software works as before.

Recommendations for the use of AI at LAB and LUT can be found on eLAB's AI-based tools policies page.


  • Turnitin guide for students below in Files section.
  • Instructional video by @Pedatiimi for submitting a work and checking a Turnitin report and teacher's comments in "Turnitin assignment 2" activity.
  • Instructional video by @Pedatiimi for submitting a work and checking a Turnitin report and teacher's comments in "Assignment" activity.