|Turnitin is a web-based plagiarism detection/prevention service that matches uploaded documents to its database of scholarly research and student papers. Based on that, Turnitin provides a comprehensive report highlighting and hyperlinking the matched text. Turnitin uses data-mining to compile a large database of electronic academic materials which it indexes and stores.
With its relentless effort and commitment to ensure quality education and knowledge production, University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB) has now been using Turnitin as a platform through which both faculty and students will benefit in their various courseworks, writing projects and publications. Turnitin provides instructors with the tools to engage students in the writing process, gives personalized feedback, and assesses student progress over time. Turnitin is used by more than 30 million students at 15,000 institutions in 150 countries.
At ULAB, the operation of Turnitin is managed by the Office of Faculty Research (OFR). Instructor licenses are provided to all academic departments and research centers. At the research center level, instructor licenses are provided to the center directors and, if required, one senior research fellows of the center. At the program level, the HoDs (or any faculty designated by the HoDs) and/or academic coordinators hold Turnitin instructor licenses and provide supports to other faculty when:
To use Turnitin more efficiently, department coordinators would assess and determine how many courses per semester have writing projects that would require the originality check. HoDs can also request OFR to use the service of Turnitin, if all the departmental slots are occupied.
Course instructors are advised to use this service judiciously. Originality check by Turnitin is strongly recommended for:
• Master’s theses
• Internship reports
• Final assignments (if taken instead of final exam)
• Research works
• Research proposals
• Campaign plans/ reports
However, a faculty may also use Turnitin to check the originality of a minor class assignment, if they consider it important for students to achieve program learning outcomes.
During the thesis writing phases, all graduate research students will be provided a dedicated Turnitin access, to check the originality of their work-in-progress.
Undergraduate students will check the originality of their assignments/papers at the ULAB Library. ULAB Library is provided two instructor licenses for this purpose. Any undergraduate submission that requires an originality check using Turnitin should have to be done by ULAB Library and the Librarian (or a designated officer) should provide the student a signed Turnitin report against any submission checked by the library.
Fig: A generic process of screening by ULAB students
For Master’s theses, internship reports, assignments and student projects, ULAB recommended acceptable similarity index is less than 20 percent (except bibliography). Papers exceeding 20 percent similarity index needs to be revised until they reach the benchmark. Submissions exceeding 20 percent similarity index would be considered as plagiarized.
For the faculty research projects, acceptable similarity index is up to 15 percent. Faculty Research Grant and ULAB journal publications will follow this benchmark. However, for beyond ULAB submission, similarity index will be determined by the policy of respective journals/ conferences/ grant authorities.
Faculty can seek assistance from OFR regarding the originality check of their articles before submission. In addition, OFR can also guide the faculty about limiting the similarity incidences within benchmark. OFR has an online submission system through which any paper prepared by ULAB faculty can be checked for similarity incidences using the following link.
The HR Office, with the consultation of OFR, may use Turnitin when determining the credibility of publications in the recruitment process and in promotion affairs.