Turnitin Assignment 2

This guidance refers to the Turnitin assignment 2 plugin and covers all settings. For a quick set up refer to Assignment Quickstart Guides.

Turnitin is a web-based text-matching software system which can assist in determining plagiarism and which can be used to teach students how to properly acknowledge quotations. Turnitin provides a report on any text matches. Turnitin does not interpret the report nor dictate action in response to the report, nor does access to the software, in itself, imply any requirement to act on the report. Those questions remain properly the responsibility of the University's academic processes. It also offers a Feedback Studio function that allows assignments to be marked and commented on online.

Accepted file types

Turnitin currently accepts the following file types for upload into an assignment:

  • Microsoft Word™ (DOC and DOCX)
  • Corel WordPerfect®
  • HTML
  • Adobe PostScript®
  • Plain text (TXT)
  • Rich Text Format (RTF)
  • Portable Document Format (PDF)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX, and PPS) (Unable to generate an Originality Report )
  • Hangul (HWP)

For assignments that accept any file types the following image file types can be displayed and rendered in GradeMark, but will not generate an Originality Report:

  • JPEG
  • GIF
  • PNG
  • TIFF
  • BMP
  • PICT

Non-supported file types

  • Microsoft® Works (.wps) file types.
  • Apple Pages file types.
  • Spreadsheets created outside of Microsoft Excel (i.e. .ods).
  • GDOC files (.gdoc) which are just links to online Google Document files, but don't actually contain text or the document's content. Google Drive must be used to upload Google Docs.
  • Microsoft Word 2007 macros-enabled (.docm) files.

All other file types that are not one of file formats listed above will be accepted by Turnitin when the setting for Allow submission of any file type is set to Yes, but the file may not be displayed in GradeMark. When files cannot be displayed in GradeMark, Lecturers and Tutors are still able to download the original files

Loading data from Turnitin

A number of staff have reported problems in opening Turnitin Submission Inboxes using Internet Explorer or Chrome on Windows. We recommend that you do not use Internet Explorer to access Feedback Studio. If the Submission Inbox hangs with the message Loading data from Turnitin, try refreshing your browser. If this does not work try using Firefox while Information Services investigate this issue. If you are a Mac user, please ensure that you using OS X 10.4.11 (Tiger) or above.

Acceptable file size

Turnitin assignments will accept files up to 40MB

Digital receipts

On submission of a Turnitin assignment, students will receipt a notification within their University email stating that the submission has been submitted. The full digital receipt can be view and printed from the Turnitin My submissions screen.

Not all departments use the Turnitin Moodle plugin. We advise staff to contact IT Self Service Portal to request training if you have not used Turnitin before.

Please ensure you are using a supported operating system and browser and have configured your settings to work with Turnitin.
Check out Turnitin's system requirements
. We recommend that you avoid using Internet Explorer when accessing Feedback Studio and instead use an up-to-date version of Firefox. If you are a Mac user, please ensure that you using OS X 10.4.11 (Tiger) or above.

Create Turnitin assignment

  1. Click Turn editing on.
  2. Click on the section header to open the topic/week where you want the Turnitin assignment to be located. Click Add an activity or resource.
  3. Select Turnitin Assignment 2 from the Activity list and click Add.
  4. Work through these settings, considering each in turn and identifying what would be appropriate for your assignment. Guidance on each setting that you might need to change is shown below.

General Settings



Turnitin Assignment

Turnitin Assignment Name: You have to give your assignment a name. Choose something that will be meaningful for students and help them to distinguish different assignments on the module.


Summary: Provide assignment information and instructions in the Summary field. If you are planning on using Feedback Studio (Turnitin's online feedback system) you should ask students to submit their assignments with double-spaced text so you can use the feedback features effectively. Select the tick box under the summary to display this information on the module page.

Do not add in a link to a file in the Summary field as this will render the link to the file unusable. If you need to use a link to a file you will need to select the next option Display description on module page for the link to work.


Submission Types

Submission Type: File upload requires students to undertake an action that is similar to attaching a document to an email. Text input enables the students to copy and paste their paper in a text box to submit their assignment.

Default is File Upload

Number of Parts

Number of Parts: Your assignment can have several parts (e.g. the group work section and an individual reflection, or data and subsequent analysis). Select the number to correspond to the number of parts of the assignment that you want your students to be able to submit.

Each part will have a separate grade that will then equally feed into an overall grade for the assignment. If you have a multipart assignment and require different weightings on each part of the assignment or different due dates these can be changed later in the process.

Default Number of Parts is 1

Maximum file type

Maximum File Size: This setting determines the maximum file size for submissions to each assignment part. The default is 40MB which is the maximum upload limit for assignments submitted to Turnitin 

Default is Course Upload limit (40MB).

Anonymous Marking

Anonymous Marking: Set this option to Yes if you require the assignment to be anonymously marked. The names of the student will be shown once the marks and feedback is released back to the students. Once a student has submitted to the Submission inbox this option cannot be changed. Please refer to the Turnitin Anonymous Quickstart Guide for information on how to set up an Anonymous Turnitin assignment.

Default is No. Before setting an assignment with anonymous marking remember that nobody can see the students' names in the Turnitin Assignments area (unless revealed) which means that if a student calls to ask if their submission was successful this cannot be verified.

You cannot download any files submitted when anonymous marking is enabled, you can only access the GradeMark and online versions of submissions so you must be prepared for online marking.

Submission file type

Change Allow submission of any file type? to Yes if students are required to submit a variety of file types. Please note that not all file types will generate a Similarity Report but Feedback Studio can be used to mark submissions.

Default is No

Display  Originality

If you want students to view their Similarity Report so that they can use Turnitin as a formative assessment tool to support the development of their academic writing you will need to change the Display Originality Reports to Students to Yes. Similarity Reports cannot be not generated for all file types.

Default is No

Grade Display

Grade Display: Choose if grades for individual assignments and parts of assignments are displayed as a fraction of the available marks, or as a percentage.

Default is Show grades as Fraction.  

Auto Refresh Grades/Scores: By default, any changes made in Turnitin will automatically be pulled into Moodle by the integration plugin. You can use this option to turn off this feature, however, in order to maintain synchronisation between both systems, you will need to frequently manually refresh grades and originality scores from within Moodle.

Default is Yes, automatically refresh originality scores and grades

Set these options as defult

Check the box to set the values you have selected for the above settings as your Turnitin assignment defaults. If you check this box the defaults outlined above will be superseded by your selections.

Grade settings


Click Grade to view and change the settings in the Grade section.

Grade Type

Leave Type as the default Point.

Set the Maximum points or marks associated with the Turnitin assignment.

Default is 100

It is not possible to use a Scale with Turnitin assignments as these are not supported.

 Grade Catergory

This Grade category controls the category in which this activity's grades are placed in the Grader Report.

Grade to pass

Grade to pass determines the minimum grade required to pass. The value is used in activity and course completion, and in the gradebook, where pass grades are highlighted in green and fail grades in red.

Edit dates for Assignment Parts


Assignment Dates

Set your Start, Due and Post dates and maximum marks.  Note: For multiple part assignments you will need to set the dates and maximum marks for each assignment part.

Start Date is when the Summary text area becomes visible to students.

Due Date is when the students are expected to submit their assignment. When setting up due dates please note that Turnitin maintenance periods may occur the 1st  and 3rd Saturday of the month. We recommend that assignment deadlines are set between 9-5 Monday-Friday to ensure educational technology, IT, and course office support is available for students who experience problems submitting assignments.

Post Date is when the feedback comments and marks are released to students.

Set the Max Marks for the assignment part. For single-part assignments, Max Marks is the maximum marks available for the assignment.

For multipart assignments, you might need to change the Max Marks on each Assignment Part. For example, many assignments are set up as multipart assignments to enable students to submit supporting evidence, but only Part 1 of the assignment is graded. In this example, you would set Assignment Part 1 to 100 and all other Assignment Parts to 0.

Originality Report Options



Originality Report Options

Click Originality Report Options to change the Similarity Report settings.

This is the most important set of settings for a Turnitin assignment and you will need to change some of the defaults.

Allow submissions after due date

Allow Submissions after the Due Date: We recommend changing this setting to Yes. Submissions attempted after the due date are often not received by Turnitin and cannot be marked using Feedback Studio, making them very difficult to manage. Late submissions are marked as late and the actual submission date and time is recorded.

Default is No

Report Generation Speed

Report Generation Speed: There are three options for this setting which relate to the timing of the generation of the Originality Report and the resubmission settings.

  • Generate reports immediately (students can resubmit until due date): Similarity Reports for the initial submission by each student to this assignment will be generated immediately. Students may resubmit as often as they wish until the assignment due date. Only the latest submission is available to the lecturer or student. Previous versions are removed. Student submissions will compare against one another within the assignment on the due date, which may result in a change in the Similarity Report similarity index and results on the due date.

    • If students have been given the option to review their Similarity Report, they should be informed that after three resubmissions, it will take 24 hours for the Similarity Report to generate.

  • Generate reports immediately (students cannot resubmit): Similarity Reports for all submissions will be generated immediately. Students cannot resubmit papers. Submissions must be deleted by the lecturer/course officer to enable resubmission. This option is not recommended as students are unable to resubmit and submissions are not checked against each other.
  • Generate reports on due date (students can resubmit until due date): Similarity Reports will not be generated for any submission until the due date and time of the assignment. Students may resubmit as many times as needed until the due date and time without receiving reports. Resubmissions may not be made after the due date and time of the assignment.

Default is 'Generate reports immediately (students can resubmit until due date)'.  

Where resubmission is allowed, students may resubmit as often as they wish until the assignment due date. Similarity Reports after third submission will take 24h to generate

Store Student Papers

Store Student Papers: There are two options to choose from. Store student papers in the Standard Repository or No Repository. If No Repository is chosen, the student papers will be checked against the Turnitin Databases but will not be submitted to the Database. For formative submissions change this option to No Repository so the student's formative submission is not matched to a later summative submission. For confidential project or dissertation work, you might also need to change the option to No Repository to ensure that the student's assignment remains confidential.

Default is 'No repository '. Change to " Standard repository" which is suitable for most summative submissions.

The remainder of the options listed below enables you to exclude certain elements from a Similarity Report. We do not recommend that any of these options are changed.

Check against stored student papers

Choose whether or not to check papers against the Turnitin Student Papers repository. The similarity index percentage may decrease if this is de-selected.

Default is Yes

Check against internet

Choose whether or not to check papers against the Internet sources stored in the Turnitin database.

Default is Yes

Check against

Choose whether or not to check papers against the journals, periodicals and publications stored in the Turnitin database.

Default is Yes

Exclude bibliography

Text appearing in the bibliography works cited, and references sections can be excluded from the Similarity Index and Similarity Report. This means that the Similarity Index will be reduced in all instances where the Bibliography is excluded.

Default is No

Excldue quoted material

Text appearing in the quotes of student papers can be excluded from the Similarity Index and Similarity Report. This means that the Similarity Index will be reduced in all instances where the quoted material is excluded.

Default is No

Exclude small matches

Matches that are not of sufficient length can be excluded from the Similarity Index and Similarity Report. The number of words or paper percentage to be excluded is determined by yourself and entered into the text box. Change Words to Percent to add a paper percentage.

Default is Words

Grademark Options

Setting NameDetails

Grade Mark Options

Select GradeMark Options to attach a Rubric or a Grading Form to a Turnitin assignment.  If neither rubrics or grading forms will not be used to mark the Turnitin assignment, skip this step.

Grae mark options

The Attach a rubric to this assignment setting allows you to attach a rubric or grading form in order to provide feedback to students that highlights strengths and areas for development against the assignment criteria. If you have previously created a rubric or grading form this will be available in the rubric drop-down menu.

If you would like to create a rubric or grading form, click on Launch Rubric Manager and follow the rubric guidance. We recommend using an excel spreadsheet to create a new rubric as Turnitin has an hour time-out limit.

Default is No rubric

Common module settings

Setting NameDetails

Common module settings

Select Common module settings to change the visibility of the Turnitin assignment or to manage marking by groups.

Comon Module Settings


Visible: If you wish to keep the assignment area hidden select Hide.

Default is Show

If you have multiple Lecturers grading and providing feedback on student assignments you can set up groups/groupings to manage the marking.

  • Students must first be added to groups
  • Set Group mode to Separate groups.
  • When you view the assignment you can then filter by separate groups to facilitate the marking process.

Groups on Turnitin do not enable students to submit one assignment as part of a group work submission.

Restrict access

Setting NameDetails

Restrict Access

Select restrict access to restrict access to a Turnitin assignment by using a number of different restrictions. To protect students’ personal information, Course Officers, Lecturers and Teaching Assistants must not use Moodle group restrictions  to manage resubmissions and extensions of assignments and assessments in Moodle. Group functionality in Moodle supports collaboration and groupwork and students are able to see the membership of each group as you would expect for a collaboration feature.  

This makes the group feature unsuitable for restricting access to assignments being used for extensions and/or resubmissions. Instead you must restrict by user profile fields as outlined in the Turnitin managing extensions and students who fail at first attempt guidance.

Additional Resources

  1. Turnitin Troubleshooting
  2. Groups and groupings
  3. Restrict access
  4. Turnitin managing extensions and students who fail at first attempt