The similarity score is your magic number. It tells you what percentage of your work matches sources in the Turnitin database.
Rule of thumb #1: The higher your score is, the more likely you need to address unoriginal text.
We call each snippet of text that is found in the Turnitin database a similarity. A similarity can range from a few words within a single sentence to entire paragraphs.
Rule of thumb #2: The higher the similarity, the more likely you’ve plagiarized.
Each similarity corresponds to an original source, which contains the similarity with your text.
Rule of thumb #3: The more familiar the original source looks to you, the higher the chance that you plagiarized.
Does your text include a reference list? Great! However, in this case, it doesn’t matter much.
We ignore your reference list, so it doesn’t influence your similarity score.
Why? Citing your sources does not constitute plagiarism.
The Plagiarism Checker does not index or analyze your references. We simply ignore them when comparing your text against the database.
Every academic writer uses quotes. Sometimes, they are necessary for expressing or analyzing your ideas. Properly quoted text does not constitute plagiarism. However, you should always follow these guidelines when quoting text:
The Plagiarism Checker might mark quoted text as similarities. So long as the material is cited, you can ignore these similarities.
You can ignore found similarities if your quotes are properly cited.
Each similarity negatively influences your similarity score. This does not mean that each similarity is considered plagiarism.
You will need to decide on your own if you need to revise your work.
Ask yourself the following questions:
It’s okay if the answer to these questions is yes. However, the more questions you can answer with yes, the more likely it is that you plagiarized and have some work to do to to address it.
Is the answer to these questions no? If so, then you can probable ignore the similarity.
When you paraphrase, you rewrite information from a source text in your own words. You intend to make use of the source to improve the reasoning and argumentation in your own work. Paraphrased text should always be cited.
When you quote, you have literally copied the text from a source. You do so to strengthen your argument and to show the words an author has used. Quoted material should always be cited.
If your text matches with the source, then you probably didn’t properly paraphrase the original source. You copied too much of the author’s writing.
You now have two options, depending how similar the text is:
Use our tips to paraphrase like a star. Always cite paraphrased text.
Finally, make sure to consistently cite your sources according to your specific citation style, whether it’s APA, Harvard or Chicago. Are you doubting whether or not you need to cite a source? Then you should probably just do it!
Want to contact us directly? No problem, we are always here for you.
Downloading your results as a PDF is simple. Just follow these three steps:
Review every similarity for plagiarism, and decide whether or not you need to revise your text.
Your similarity score shows you what percentage of your text is found within sources in the Turnitin database.
For example, if your score is 15%, then 15% of the content you wrote is unoriginal, as it matches text in the database.
You will have to review each similarity and decide whether or not you need to revise your work.
Your work should not contain any plagiarism. This means that even a score of 1% is too high.
However, in practice, not all similarities found by Turnitin constitute plagiarism. Turnitin sometimes flags the following:
Because of this, you can generally follow these guidelines:
Even if your score is 1%, you will need to review each similarity and decide whether it’s necessary to revise your work.
When citing a section of text fewer than 40 words, you use double quotation marks directly before and directly after the quote. Next to that, you mention the author, the year and a page number.
|The definition of soccer is, according to Van Persie (2014), “running back and forth with each other and whoever scores the most, wins” (p.15).|
|A famous soccer player always said, “playing soccer with each other on a beautiful Sunday afternoon is the greatest thing there is” (Sneijder, 2013, pp. 2-3).|
If the quote contains 40 words or more, then place the quote in a separate block, which begins on a new line and is indented in its entirety.
|The second anniversary of Scribbr was widely reported in the press:|
|Scribbr is now two years old and that is being celebrated with the introduction of a new version of the APA Generator. Now that more and more students make grateful use of the APA Generator, it is high time for a new version, according to the founders.|
|The APA Generator is very popular because the APA Style has many exceptions. As a result, it is difficult for many students to really get the hang of the APA Style. In addition, the APA Generator saves many students a great deal of time. (Schlagers, 2014, p. 3)|
Check the article about quoting according to the APA rules for more information.
The Scribbr Plagiarism Checker detect similarities between your paper and the official Turnitin database. Because many students write their references in the same way (for instance in APA Style), Turnitin finds many similarities with these sources.
A reference found by the check is not a form of plagiarism. Therefore, there is no need to take action.