Author: Cheng Zhao |

How to Beat Turnitin:
Dos and Don’ts

How to Beat Turnitin:
Dos and
Don’ts

5 min read

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Understanding Turnitin: Upholding Academic Integrity

Previously recognized as Plagiarism.org, Turnitin stands as an advanced software solution designed to uphold the utmost standards of academic integrity. In essence, it serves as a mechanism through which educators ensure that students engage in authentic work rather than resorting to plagiarism.

Though initially perceived as a straightforward plagiarism checker, Turnitin operates as a robust tool that serves not only to deter plagiarism but also to enhance the overall quality of academic writing. Nevertheless, despite its manifold advantages, the platform is not devoid of limitations. In fact, the growing prevalence of false-positive outcomes has led to a certain aversion among students and educators alike. This has led to increasingly inventive methods of circumventing Turnitin’s mechanisms, highlighting the extent to which the quest to bypass the software has evolved.


How Turnitin Identifies Plagiarism

Understanding Turnitin’s functioning reveals that it transcends being a mere plagiarism checker. The generated report refrains from quantifying plagiarism percentages; instead, it highlights resemblances within your paper compared to a spectrum of online sources, scholarly publications, and fellow student submissions present in the Turnitin database. The evaluation of these highlighted similarities rests with your professor, who determines whether your work exhibits originality.

The intricacy arises from the evolving nature of Turnitin’s algorithms, resulting in an increased occurrence of false-positive outcomes. For instance, commonplace transition phrases contribute to the similarity percentage, unless your instructor stipulates otherwise. The quest to accommodate paraphrasing introduces further unpredictability, as the precise methodology for identifying similarities remains veiled.

But does Turnitin’s accuracy hold?

Much like any plagiarism detection mechanism, Turnitin is not impervious to imperfections. This aspect underscores why the responsibility of assigning grades or deeming assignments as successes or failures rests solely with the instructor. The assessment of the similarity report requires human analysis to reach an accurate conclusion.

In summation, comprehending how Turnitin detects plagiarism unveils its nuanced approach beyond a simple checker. It underscores the role of professors in gauging similarity highlights and determining the originality of your work, given the intricacies and potential inaccuracies inherent in Turnitin’s evolving algorithms.


Best Practices for Navigating Turnitin

When it comes to circumventing Turnitin, understanding the dos and don’ts is crucial. Here’s a guide to help you navigate this terrain effectively:

Dos and Don’ts:

1. Don’t Attempt Character Swapping: Swapping Latin characters with similar-looking characters from other alphabets is an outdated trick. Turnitin’s flag report encompasses all suspicious aspects, including unconventional characters.

2. Avoid White-on-White Text: The tactic of replacing spaces with invisible white characters no longer evades Turnitin’s radar. The software detects this and will draw attention to your manipulation efforts.

3. Steer Clear of Macros, Images, or PDFs: Using macros, images, or non-editable PDFs to replace your paper won’t deceive Turnitin. The word count is reported, so zero words will alert your professor.

4. Use Quotes Sparingly and Properly: Excessive use of quotes won’t outsmart Turnitin. Instead, employ quotes judiciously, adhering to proper citation style. Overquoting triggers suspicion and raises flags.

5. Be Wary of Paraphrasing Tools: Free paraphrasing tools often result in incoherent content. Premium tools might offer more success, but Turnitin can still identify such manipulations.

6. Employ Quality Paraphrasing: Effective paraphrasing involves more than just synonym swapping. Focus on restructuring sentences, diversifying sentence lengths, and incorporating your unique analysis.

7. Utilize Quotes and Cite Sources: Employ quotes sparingly, using proper citations. This increases word count and can aid in expediting the writing process.

8. Submit Original Work: The most foolproof method is submitting a genuinely original essay. While various avenues, like hiring a professional writer or obtaining a quality rewrite, can achieve this, uniqueness is paramount.

In essence, mastering Turnitin requires a nuanced approach. Avoid outdated tricks, use quotes thoughtfully, and prioritize originality. Employing these strategies aligns with academic integrity, ensuring your work is both credible and authentic.