Using Turnitin for Canvas Assignments

Turnitin is a tool that can help you to compare the similarity of a student's submission to other content in the Turnitin repository. In Canvas, the ability to enable Turnitin is built in to the assignment settings, for any assignment that requires a file submission. At WSE EP, it is a requirement that all graded, text-based assignments and assessments have the Turnitin setting enabled.

Creating an Assignment with Turnitin Enabled 

  1. Log into Canvas and access your course.
  2. In the Module where you want to build the assignment, click the + symbol to add a new item.


  3. Select Assignment from the menu, and then enter a name for the Assignment. Click Add Item to continue.


  4. Click on the Assignment link after it creates to bring up the assignment instructions page, and then click Edit, to edit the assignment details.
  5. Complete the appropriate details for your assignment, including a description that provides students with information on what is required.
  6. In order to use Turnitin, the Submission Type must be Online and the File Uploads box must be checked. Please make sure that Text Entry is not checked.
  7. Important: Note that the Text Entry option does not support inline text preview for using the markup tools for providing feedback. Files uploaded via Text Entry can't be checked by Turnitin.


  8. From the Plagiarism Review drop-down menu, select Turnitin


  9. The full menu for configuration of Turnitin settings will appear. Here, you can select the option to submit the student's submission to the standard repository (where it will be used for future comparisons in TII), adjust what this submission is compared against, and declare what the similarity report should include as well as when it will be released to students.


    To avoid false positives of plagiarism detection, we recommend excluding bibliographic materials.
  10. Choose when your students will see the originality report. By default, this option is set to Never. Selecting the other options will result in the originality report being visible to students either immediately after submitting their work, after the due date of the assignment, or after a grade is entered.
  11. Click the Save & Publish button to post the assignment and allow students to submit. 

Viewing Student Submission Reports 

You can view the Student Submission Reports for Turnitin from the gradebook, which has colorful visual cues to give you an idea of how the students scored on their similarity reports.

  1. Navigate to the gradebook by clicking Grades in the course navigation.
  2. Locate the column for your assignment with Turnitin enabled.
  3. You will see a small square representing the Turnitin originality indicator.

  4. The indicator is color-coded, according to the originality score or status of the report, using the following scale:  
    • Gray: originality report not yet generated
    • Blue: no matching words found 
    • Green: 1-24% similarity index 
    • Yellow: 25-49% similarity index 
    • Orange: 50-74% similarity index 
    • Red: 75-100% similarity index 
    • Clock: Turnitin report is pending.  
  5. Click on the originality indicator - the gradebook cell will become editable, and an arrow will appear to the right of the box. Click the details arrow to open the grade details.


  6. Click the SpeedGrader link to view the originality score.

  7. Click the originality score to view more details.

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