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Turnitin for Students

A guide for students using Turnitin software through D2L.

Viewing Your Report

Your professor may have enabled a feature in D2L that allows you to view your paper and directly compare it to sources that Turnitin found to be similar. If this feature is enabled, your paper opens in a separate screen with a sidebar that shows any sources you may have used, or that may be similar to content in your paper. If the program finds words or phrases in your paper that match one of its sources, it highlights them in different colors. Each color represents how similar your paper is to a source. If it finds a similarity, the Similarity Report offers a link to the document that best matches your paper, and you can view those in a sidebar when you open the report.

The different levels of matches are  as follows:

  • Blue = No matches found
  • Green = Up to 24% of your paper has a match
  • Yellow = Between 25% and 49% of your paper has a match
  • Orange = Between 50% and 74% of your paper has a match
  • Red = Between 75% and 100% of your paper has a match.

Even if you have quoted a source and properly cited it, Turnitin may still highlight it. This is completely normal. The program cannot distinguish between good citations and bad ones, but your professor can. Your professor uses Turnitin as a tool to help them identify areas of your paper that might be improperly cited or taken from a source without crediting the original author. If you aren't sure whether or not you are citing your sources correctly, please see the section of this guide called "Citing Your Sources," or talk to a reference librarian. The Writing Center is also available to help you with citations and other writing questions.