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Plagiarism: Turnitin plagiarism plugin

Maintained by Picture of Dan Marsden Dan Marsden
Turnitin is a commercial plagiarism detection system which requires a paid subscription to use - This Plugin integrates with the existing Moodle Assignment module.
This plugin will soon be replaced by a new plugin currently in development by Turnitin - the new plugin will be backwards compatible with this plugin - more information on this is available here:


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Dan Marsden (Lead maintainer)
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Matt Gibson: Contributor
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  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Mon, Jan 20, 2014, 3:39 PM
    I've just downloaded the Turnitin V2 Instructor manual and it describes it as a separate activity link. It doesn't integrate with the Moodle assignment, forum or workshop tool.
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Mon, Jan 20, 2014, 4:51 PM
    Marinda - this is new bleeding edge stuff... the documentation hasn't been updated yet - you may want to continue using my plugin for now and wait for things to settle a bit. I have 2 clients starting to test the new code right now and there are still a few small things to be tidied up before it works exactly the same as mine but it currently works with the existing Assignment, workshop and forum modules. More info on the plugin is available in my blog:
    My existing plugin still works with 2.6 and lower - I will continue to support it in 2.6 and lower but at this stage I don't expect I will work on support for any versions past 2.6 (like 2.7) as the new plugin provided by Turnitin should be a lot more stable, easier to support and provide a wider/larger functionality set than my old code.
  • Lindy anime style
    Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 10:19 AM
    Dan - just curious - if we were to try the Moodle Direct v2 plugin and find it doesn't integrate with Moodle assign v 2.3 (and up), how hard would it be to switch to your plugin? I know its bleeding edge stuff, but our educators are heavily invested in Marking guides and Rubrics. We need the TurnItIn integration to be able to work with these features!
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 10:25 AM
    Hi Lindy - it's bleeding edge stuff - so I wouldn't expect it would be easy to switch back. If you are worried and don't have the internal staff/knowledge to test it properly it's best to continue using mine and then look at upgrading/changing at a later date.
  • Lindy anime style
    Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 12:46 PM
    Thanks Dan! Legend!
  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 1:52 PM
    Right, trying the Moodle Direct v2 plugin proved to be disastrous (Moodle 2.5). We changed back to the Dan Marsden plugin yesterday and everything runs smoothly. @Lindy: Luckily all the assignments and rubrics that were uploaded using the V2 plugin could still be reached on Turnitin.
  • Picture of Hittesh Ahuja
    Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 5:20 PM
    @Marinda Van Rooyen Hi Marinda,Can you elaborate on how exactly is the plugin disastrous. We are planning to use the MoodleDirectV2's version of what currently is Dan's plugins and currently testing them on our test servers. Any pointers would really help. Thanks.

    @Dan , if we decide to use the MoodleDirectV2 plugin for the plagiarism tool bit ( /plagiarism/turnitin) ,would /should it still process assignments sent through your plugin ?
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Thu, Jan 30, 2014, 6:07 AM
    @Hittesh - the links to reports on previously submitted assignments should still work and from what I understand it creates "new" assignments in Turnitin for any newly submitted files. (would be good to test everything though)
  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Fri, Mar 7, 2014, 2:21 PM
    Some students received the following message when they tried to upload their file to Turnitin.

    "A site configuration error occured when attempting to send this file to Turnitin (118)"

    This error is not in the list of Turnitin errors. We've picked up that these particular files were scanned pdf documents so it should have generated error 1023: "We're sorry, but we could not read the PDF you submitted. Please make sure that the file is not password protected and contains selectable text rather than scanned images."

    The lecturer complained that this message is not very useful so I would like to change it to something more useful, but I would like to know under which circumstances this error is generated.
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Sat, Mar 8, 2014, 4:33 PM
    Hi Marinda - you should contact Turnitin to ask them about the circumstances around the 118 error - I'm not aware of anything about this particular error.
  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Wed, Mar 19, 2014, 3:17 PM
    One of the courses made use of groups and the new "Available for group members only" when they created the first assignment (with enabled Turnitin). It seems that only 82 of the 519 students synced to Turnitin. No more students are now added to Turnitin when new assignments are created, even if no grouping is used, only the original group of students have access to Turnitin. Any other students who upload assignments get a 118 error message.

    How can I sync the whole class list to Turnitin?
  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Wed, Mar 19, 2014, 3:24 PM
    Hi Marinda - if you are using my plugin you could try adding 118 to the list of turnitin_attemptcodes listed in admin > plagiarism > turnitin
    this will go through all 118 codes that have an attempt value of "0" in the database and try to resubmit them to turnitin next time cron runs.

    Note - after it has completed you should go back and remove the 118 code from the turnitin_attemptcode list

    If you are using Turnitin's new plugin - you'll need to ask them for help smile
  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Wed, Mar 19, 2014, 4:13 PM
    We are using the Dan Marsden plugin. I've done what you suggested, but it still gives the following error when I run the cron for a large number of students.

    could not create user/login to turnitin code:118 encrypt value in URL is bad or missing

  • Picture of Dan Marsden
    Wed, Mar 19, 2014, 5:40 PM
    not sure then sorry - I haven't seen that issue before - to investigate further I'd need access to your server and not something I could do as a volunteer - if you're really stuck and are able to fund the time for someone to help further drop me an e-mail.
  • Picture of Marinda Van Rooyen
    Wed, Mar 19, 2014, 9:51 PM
    Thanks. I fixed the problem. The students' email addresses contained a space at the end and consisted of uppercase letters. Took me days to figure it out. I changed them all, made the changes and now the students are syncing and reports are generated. New integration code that doesn't clean messy detail. Very expensive lesson. I hope chocolates will pacify some very upset lecturers ....
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