Activities: Turnitin's Moodle Direct v2

Maintained by Picture of John McGettrick John McGettrick, Picture of Paul Dawson Paul Dawson, Picture of Alex McLarty Alex McLarty, Picture of David Winn David Winn, Picture of Caroline Westgarth Caroline Westgarth, Picture of David Hatton David Hatton
Turnitin's Moodle Direct v2 integration activity module is a standalone Moodle module with the aim of representing the full suite of Turnitin's features within the standard Moodle workflow. The module is an upgrade on the previous Turnitin plugin and is developed and maintained iParadigms the creators of Turnitin.
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Moodle Direct V2 is the latest version of the Moodle Direct integration for Turnitin. Moodle Direct V2 installs separately to the original Turnitin Moodle Direct plugin within Moodle so that it can be used in parallel.

Key New Features

  • PeerMark - PeerMark is now integrated into the Turnitin Assignments and is accessible from the inbox for instructors and students.
  • Rubrics - Instructors can now attach their own rubrics to Turnitin Assignments and access the Rubric Manager, Students can also view any rubric that is attached to an assignment.
  • Quickmarks - An instructor's Quickmark manager (used within GradeMark) can now be accessed from within their Moodle environment.
  • More informative Inbox screen - An assignment inbox screen is now organised so that much more information is readily available and combined on to one screen.
  • Quick editing - Certain assignment details (e.g. dates and marks) can be edited quickly in the inbox without having to go to a specific edit screen.
  • Drag and drop submissions - Users can now submit via drag and drop. They will also be provided with an extract of their submission as proof that it has been submitted to Turnitin.
  • Class Migration Tool - Instructors and administrators can now recreate classes they have on Turnitin which may have existed in previous integrations or created through the Turnitin website.

Inherited features from v1

  • Multi-part Assignments - Each Turnitin Assignment may consist of up to 5 parts, parts can be configured to have start dates, due dates and post dates independent of one another.
  • Real Turnitin Users - The integration maps Moodle users to real Turnitin user accounts for both Instructors and Students, there is the option to disable student emails should an institution not wish to have students log in to Turnitin rather than Moodle.
  • GradeMark / Moodle Grade Book integration - Grades are synchronised between Turnitin's GradeMark and the Moodle grade book.
  • Anonymous Marking (UK Only) - Anonymous marking allows student names to be masked from instructors up until the post date.
  • Troubleshooting / Diagnostics - Diagnostic mode allows administrators to identify bugs and communication issues by enabling API call logs and displaying line numbers within error messages


This plugin is part of set Turnitin.


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Picture of John McGettrick
John McGettrick (Lead maintainer)
Picture of Caroline Westgarth
Caroline Westgarth
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  • Picture of Caroline Westgarth
    Thu, 21 Jul 2016, 11:15 PM
    Hi John,

    Thank you for raising this with us.

    Yes we are planning on looking into group submissions this year.

    Kind Regards

    Caroline Westgarth
    Turnitin Product Manager, Integrations
  • Picture of Huw Smith
    Mon, 1 Aug 2016, 9:37 PM
    I have installed Turnitin Assignment 2 (Version: 2016072601) on Moodle 3.1.1 (Build: 20160721) and the plugin installed fine.
    But when a student tries to submit a file the upload icon just sits there and doesn't complete or show an error.
    With debugging turned on this error is displayed: Fatal error: Class 'finfo' not found in /srv/www/htdocs/csg/mod/turnitintooltwo/sdk/lti.class.php on line 540

    When I try to delete the failed upload this error is displayed:

    You need to update your sql to include additional name fields in the user object.

    line 3273 of /lib/moodlelib.php: call to debugging()
    line 193 of /mod/turnitintooltwo/turnitintooltwo_submission.class.php: call to fullname()
    line 69 of /mod/turnitintooltwo/turnitintooltwo_submission.class.php: call to turnitintooltwo_submission->get_submission_details()
    line 353 of /mod/turnitintooltwo/view.php: call to turnitintooltwo_submission->__construct()

    Any suggestions how to fix this?
  • Picture of Huw Smith
    Mon, 1 Aug 2016, 11:55 PM
    Enabling php_fileinfo extension fixed the problem
  • Picture of John McGettrick
    Tue, 2 Aug 2016, 2:58 PM
    The debugging warning showing "You need to update your sql to include additional name fields in the user object." shouldn't impact on functionality but we'll get it fixed for the next release.
  • Picture of Nick Williams
    Wed, 28 Sep 2016, 8:45 PM
    Hi all,

    We are currently running version 2016011105 on Moodle 2.7 and we've noticed that anyone with the ability to grade in the submissions inbox can also change the submission times/dates at the top, regardless of their status as non-editing in the course page. Has anyone else found a way to change this and/or a workaround to prevent this?

    Any advice appreciated!

  • Picture of Ken Farrimond
    Tue, 11 Oct 2016, 8:08 PM
    Hi John and everyone else

    We are having intermittent failures to connect between our Moodle sites and Turnitin. We have several departmental Moodle sites on one Debian based server each connected to a sub-account of our main Turnitin account. There are different versions of Moodle in use eg

    2.8.7 (Build: 20150706) with Turnitin2 Version: 2016011105
    3.0.5 (Build: 20160711) with Turnitin2 Version: 2016072601

    Usually the outages are just for a few minutes, several times per day, but occasionally last for an hour or more. When there is an outage there is no connection, including in the "Test Turnitin Connection". We reported this to Turnitin support who sent instructions to install CA certificates, which we followed. However the problems have continued - we have just updated our error report to Turnitin support, but I thought I would check with you to see if you have any suggestions.

    Typical lines from the APIlog are

    2016-10-11 7:54:46 +0100 - ERROR --> ------------------------------------------------------------
    Turnitin SDK Exception: Curl Error - couldn't connect to host

    2016-10-11 7:54:46 +0100 - ERROR --> ------------------------------------------------------------
    Curl Error: couldn't connect to host

    Typical lines from the Activity log (with server address ***** starred out)

    Fault Code: Curl Error | File: /srv/*************/public/htdocs/mod/turnitintooltwo/sdk/soap.class.php | Line: 342 | Message: couldn't connect to host | Code: 0
    2016-10-11 12:24:20 +0100 (API_ERROR) - There was an error connecting to Turnitin the return error message is below:

    Fault Code: Curl Error | File: /srv/*****************/public/htdocs/mod/turnitintooltwo/sdk/soap.class.php | Line: 342 | Message: couldn't connect to host | Code: 0
    2016-10-11 12:24:29 +0100 (API_ERROR) - There was an error connecting to Turnitin the return error message is below:

    Fault Code: Curl Error | File: /srv/***************/public/htdocs/mod/turnitintooltwo/sdk/soap.class.php | Line: 342 | Message: couldn't connect to host | Code: 0

    Many thanks

  • Picture of John McGettrick
    Mon, 17 Oct 2016, 8:28 PM
    Hi Ken,

    Generally in cases like this we've found that updating the CA certificates solves the problem. It's very difficult to diagnose from our side if it's intermittent. The information Product Support is similar to what's in the plugin documentation:

    Is it still happening regularly? Is there any pattern to when it happens?


  • Picture of Ken Farrimond
    Mon, 17 Oct 2016, 8:53 PM
    Hi John

    Thanks for your response. The issues has been passed to the Turnitin engineering team on Friday, who have copies of our API logs, so we hope to have a response soon. We did update the CA certificates, but could they cause intermittent failures? If it can then we might need to investigate this area further. It is the intermittent nature of the failures that is so perplexing. I have tried plotting the failure times, but there is no real pattern. Most failures are during the main part of the day, but that is when the service is being used.

    We are looking at other services on the server, let me list them in case any give a suggestion as to a cause. We have a single physical server running 12 Moodle sites, most with a Turnitin connection. There is also MNET connections from each site to a single Moodle site (which does not use Turnitin). We have running on the same server a copy of EZproxy so there server has two IP addresses to all EZproxy to work (we are looking at moving EZproxy to a virtual server in case this is the cause).

    At its most basic level this problem means that sometimes you can test the Turnitin connection and it works fine, other times you try and get a failure. But for staff and students it just looks like something not working.

    Any help much appreciated.

  • Picture of Goma NAjah
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 5:46 AM
    I installed this plugin "urkund" after that i installed "turnitin" and Suddenly my moodle stoped working without any errors>
    My moodle v is 3.1

    Please Help.
  • Picture of Goma NAjah
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 6:40 AM
    I installed this plugin "urkund" after that i installed "turnitin" and Suddenly my moodle stoped working without any errors>
    My moodle v is 3.1

    Please Help.
  • Picture of Chris Chapman
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 5:05 PM
    Hi, for some reason the anonymous marking feature does not seem to be working. whenever this is enabled the next page errors with turnitintooltwo/There was an error trying to create the assignment in Turnitin

    Fault Code: invaliddata | File: [dirroot]/mod/turnitintooltwo/sdk/assignmentsoap.class.php | Line: 33 | Message: anonymous_marking_enabled - cannot set anonymous_marking_enabled field | Code: 0

    Any ideas of a fix?
  • Picture of John McGettrick
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 5:20 PM
    Hi Chris, it will need to be enabled by the admin for your Turnitin account before you can use it in Moodle.
  • Picture of Chris Chapman
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 5:44 PM
    Cheers for the swift response John, all sorted!
  • Picture of John McGettrick
    Fri, 18 Nov 2016, 6:10 PM
    No problem, glad to hear it Chris!
  • Picture of Ken Farrimond
    Wed, 30 Nov 2016, 1:38 AM
    Hi John and everyone

    The solution to the problems described above took some time to figure out. In brief it came down to an outgoing firewall issue on our server. The intermittent nature came from how the firewall interacted with the load-balancing of Turnitin's servers. The firewall reloaded its rules each hour and that would automatically fix the problem until load balancing changed an IP address in a way that the firewall would not accept. This did not happen every hour.

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