Blackboard 9: Collecting Turnitin Assignments

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What is this?

Turnitin is the global leader in evaluating and improving student writing. The company’s cloud-based service for originality checking, online grading and peer review saves instructors time and provides rich feedback to students. is now available through Blackboard. This integration allows Blackboard users to check papers for originality without leaving the Blackboard environment. It is important to note:

  • Profiles for student and faculty will be created automatically when

they use Turnitin through Blackboard.

  • No separate Turnitin registration is required for faculty and students.
  • Single login for both Blackboard and Turnitin.
  • Classes and assignments created in Blackboard are mirrored in Turnitin.

Faculty and students accustomed to using Turnitin may still access the system through the Turnitin website.

Why would I use this?

Institutions license Turnitin on an annual basis. The institutions are encouraged to communicate with students about their use of Turnitin and how their academic integrity policies work. An instructor sets up a class and an assignment in the Turnitin service. Students or instructors then submit papers to Turnitin via file upload or cut-and-paste. Turnitin consists of three core tools: OriginalityCheck®, GradeMark® and PeerMark®.

OriginalityCheck compares the paper's text to a vast database of 24+ billion pages of digital content (including archived Internet content that is no longer available), over 250 million papers in the student archive, and 120,000+ professional, academic and commercial journals and publications. The software is regularly updated with new content acquired through new partnerships. For example, Turnitin partner CrossRef boasts 500‐plus members that include publishers such as Elsevier and the IEEE, and has already added hundreds of millions of pages of new content to our database. Turnitin offers institutions a wide variety of flexible options for handling students' submissions including options that let students choose to keep their papers in an institution-only private zone.

Once assured of the paper’s originality, instructors use GradeMark to provide rich feedback using drag-and-drop marks, voice comments, and rubrics. ETS® e-rater® technology is integrated with GradeMark to identify spelling, grammar, mechanics, usage and style errors so instructors can focus on providing more substantive feedback. Instructors can track student views of the graded paper, customize and share comments and rubrics, track grades using a grade book, and assess students over time.

PeerMark facilitates the management of peer review exercises so students can evaluate and learn from one another’s work. It automates paper distribution, allows for anonymous reviews, and provides standard or customizable assessment questions.

Simultaneously layering the feedback from these three tools onto the student paper provides both the instructor and student with a comprehensive view and deeper insight into the student’s writing.

Who is using this?

One of the most widely distributed educational applications in the world, Turnitin is used by more than 10,000 institutions in 126 countries to manage the submission, tracking and evaluation of student papers online.

It is used by several of our faculty here at Hofstra University.

How do I use this?

Below are detailed steps on how you can create, review and grade Turnitin assignments.

Turnitin Assignment

An Improvement to Similarity Scoring

At Turnitin, we appreciate the importance of the Originality Report, and we are constantly seeking to deliver more reliable matches and a comprehensive Originality Report to our users.

  • What’s changing?

Starting in March, when bibliographic material is excluded from an Originality Report, we will recalculate the Similarity Score based on the remaining content only. This update will provide you with a more accurate score.

  • What does this mean?

As an example, this means that by opting to exclude a bibliography that constitutes 10% of a paper, we will now generate a report according to 90% of that paper, rather than calculating reports out of 100%.

  • How will this affect my assignments?

For assignments that have not yet passed their due date, all reports will automatically regenerate in line with the improvement. Rest assured that reports for closed assignments will not be updated. If you have open assignments, we advise logging in to check regenerated reports, as this update may cause a slight increase to a paper’s Similarity Score.

  • How can I ensure that all Originality Reports are aligned with this improvement?

If you’d prefer that all existing reports are aligned with our update (specifically for papers submitted to current assignments), you can simply opt to regenerate reports from the Document Viewer.

  • If I extend the due date for a closed assignment, will this affect current Originality Reports?

By extending a closed assignment’s due date - therefore reopening the assignment - all reports in the assignment will regenerate to align with our update.

  • If you have any questions concerning the Turnitin changes that have not been satisfactorily answered by Turnitin support, please contact Professor Alan Bailin (Hofstra Turnitin contact person) in the Axinn Library. He can be reached by email at or by telephone at 516-463-5973.


Creating a Turnitin Assignment

Image: Turnitin-1.jpg

  • Make sure the Edit Mode is ON
  • Click into any Content Area (Course Documents, Assignments, etc.)
  • Select Create Assessment and then click on Turnitin Assignment

Create a Turnitin Assignment

  • Give the assignment a title, and instructions.
  • Make sure that it is available.
  • You must check Display Until and choose a date

less than six months in the future.

  • Set the Post Date to release the grades and Comments to the Students. Prior to the Post Date, the students cannot see their grades or your comments..
  • Click Submit.

Screenshot of Turnitin Assignment

More Turnitin Options

The More Options link opens up some important choices.

Among them:

  • Do you want to allow students to see the originality Reports?
  • Do you want to allow submissions after the due date?
Screenshot of More Options

Submitting a Turnitin Assignment

The Turnitin Assignment was created in a particular folder in the Blackboard class site. In this case it was created in the Assignments folder.

For IE/Firefox: please make sure that the option to accept cookies from 3rd third-parties is enabled, or add an exception to accept cookies from

For Safari: there isn't an option to accept 3rd-party cookies, so set it to "accept all cookies."

The student clicks the Assignment link at the left to get into the Assignments folder, and then clicks View Complete under the Assignment Title to enter the Turnitin Assignment.


Submitting a Turnitin Assignment 2

Inside the Turnitin Assignment the student will click the Plus Sign icon under Submit. Student View of Submitting a Turnitin Assignment

Submitting a Turnitin Assignment 3

Because the student is already logged into Blackboard, Turnitin will have the first and last name filled in. The student enters a title for the submission and then uses the browse button to locate the Microsoft Word Document to attach. This is the same as attaching a file to an e-mail.

After selecting the file, click submit.

Student View of Submitting a Turnitin Assignment

Submitting a Turnitin Assignment 4

This step shows the student a preview of the paper she or he is submitting.

If this is the paper, he or she wants to submit, the student clicks "Submit Paper."

Student View of Submitting a Turnitin Assignment

Turnitin Digital Reciept

Turnitin Returns a Digital Receipt with a note saying:

"You have successfully submitted this paper. Below is a copy of your Turnitin Digital Receipt."

Turnitin also sends a Digital Receipt e-mail to the student's Hofstra e-mail account:

Subject: Turnitin Digital Receipt


Hello [student name],

  • This receipt acknowledges that Turnitin received your paper.
  • Below you will find the receipt information regarding your paper submission:
  • Paper ID: 73372361
  • Author: Joseph Nichto
  • Paper Title: Directions
  • Assignment Title: Essay 1 Draft 2
  • E-mail:

Followed by the text of the paper.

Student View of Digital Receipt

Turnitin Assignment Inbox with Paper Submitted

After submitting the paper, the student will see the Title of the paper and the submission date in the Turnitin Assignment Inbox.

Student View of Submitted Turnitin Essay

Reviewing Turnitin Reports

To retrieve the Turnitin Reports, the instructor goes to the Course Tools section of the Control Panel and Clicks Turnitin Assignments.


View Turnitin Reports for an Assignment

The list of Turnitin Assignments gives you the option to "View" each one. Click on the title of the assignment to go to the set of reports for that assignment.


View Turnitin Reports for an Assignment

The Instructor's Turnitin Assignment Inbox lists the author, title, percent of matching text, link to the original file, paper ID, and the date of submission. The percentage matching text is a link to the report on the individual paper.

Keep in mind that Turnitin will count and highlight correctly cited text, so while a number like 30% may seem high at first, if the 30% is correctly cited, it is not an indication of plagarism.

Screenshot of Instructor's  Turnitin Assignment Inbox

Download Original Submissions from a Turnitin Assignment

Screenshot of Instructor's  Turnitin Download Assignment Inbox

Starting in the Blackboard course and logged in as an instructor int the course, the steps are:

Control Panel > Course Tools > Turnitin Assignments > Select Assignment >

There are Check boxes to the left of each assignment and to the left of the column heading. You can select individual assignments or Select All by choosing the box next to author.

When you select a box, Turnitin opens a dialog that allows you to select “Download” and then choose “Original File.”

Another dialog opens asking if you want to compress [zip] the files. Choose Ok.

Another Dialog opens asking you to choose Originally submitted format(s) or PDF format. Click Either.

And Another dialog opens asking you to Click here to begin the download.

The zip file will be saved with your downloads.

Where can I find additional resources? help center [ TurnitIn Help]

Where can I get help?

Hofstra University Library and Faculty Computing Services are here to help you. Please contact:

Alan Bailin Turnitin Administrator

  • Phone: 516-463-5973


  • Phone: 516-463-6894

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