ACU Faculty Honored for Using Turnitin

Steve and Karen, Turnitin

Today Turnitin announced their Global Innovation Awards for 2016.  ACU’s Karen Cukrowski and Steve Hare were two of three people to be listed in “honorable mention” for academic integrity in the North America Higher Education category. Turnitin’s press release described how Karen and Steve use Turnitin to enhance student writing:

“First, students will write and submit their rough drafts through Feedback Studio. Three class peers will review these drafts, evaluating against a set of questions similar to a rubric. All students are required to participate as peer reviewers, as it has an impact on their course grade. While reviewing, students certainly mark the papers. However, they are also required to fully respond to the set of questions about the papers they are critiquing, which demand that they write even more. The peer review is not anonymous, and the professors encourage their students to get up and ask each other questions about the papers they are reading. This contributes to the sense of community that is the very focus of the course. In fact, they have seen this process lead to deeper connections between their students. In Karen’s words:

‘It’s not just about the writing; it’s about the people.’ “

For further information, check here.

Congratulations to Karen and Steve. If you want to use Turnitin as well, please check our Turnitin Feedback Studio page, or contact the instructional design team at Adams Center for help.

Common Turnitin Issues

We have had Turnitin integration in Canvas in a while and we have heard of a few issues which I would like to address in the following question and answer format.

If you are a new user of Turnitin, please check this post for instructions on how to deploy the tool in your course.

Question: My students were told that they have to create accounts in Turnitin.  Why did that happen?  Shouldn’t Canvas have taken care of that?  

Answer: Account creation requires first-time users to agree to Turnitin terms and conditions.  Students will need to agree to allow their accounts to be created.  If they have chosen not to agree, they might want to clear their cache and try again, or use another browser or computer to perform this one-time action.

Question: My students were not able to submit their assignments due to error messages about assignment title and dates.  What might be the issue?

Answer: You will need go to Turnitin settings and give the assignment a title, a start date, due date and feedback release date that should be consistent with the assignment dates you assigned in Canvas assignment settings.

Question:  A student claims that his or her assignment has been submitted but I could not see it.  Why?

Answer: The top reason is that the student may not have followed through in the submission process. One last step is to click on a button to accept the submission.  If a student does not do this, his or her assignment will not go through. If an assignment has gone through, a student should see a confirmation message on the screen.  There really isn’t a middle ground between a successful submission and an unsuccessful submission. You can ask the student to resubmit and make sure the button for confirmation is clicked.

Another possible reason is that you might have switched in your submission method from “online” to “external tools” in the middle of students submitting their assignments.  If that’s the case, submissions turned in earlier can be accessed through the Speedgrader instead of the Turnitin inbox.

Question:  Can I use the Canvas Speedgrader and Turnitin only for originality check?

Canvas has now made it possible for Turnitin assignments to be pushed to Speedgrader as well, so yes, it is possible to use the Speedgrader for grades and comments.

Using the New Turnitin Feedback Studio iPad App

Turnitin released its new Turnitin Feedback Studio app (download here).

For ACU Faculty to sign in, open the app and select “Log in with Access Code.”

Log in with Access Code

Next, open a Canvas course in Safari on your iPad (not on a laptop, and not in the Canvas app). Navigate to an assignment that is using the Turnitin LTI and open the Turnitin viewer by clicking on a submitted paper.

view of Turnitin from canvas


In the Feedback Studio view, tap the i in the circle on the lower right of the screen.  If you do not see the “i” icon, it may be covered by a gear icon. Tap on it and you will be able to see the “i”icon.

Tap the i


Tap the “Generate Code” button.

A view of the information from the assignment

It may take a moment or two before the code actually generates.


Next, copy the generated code and paste it in the appropriate place in the Turnitin app.

a unique code will be generated.


Remove the spaces before hitting Return.

Remove the spaces


Once the code is accepted, you will be able to use the Turnitin Feedback Studio app on your iPad.

An image of a paper in Turnitin Feedback Studio

Tap anywhere in the paper to make comments and suggestions. This app is new and is a little buggy, but has potential to be a great markup tool as improvements are made.

Quick Start with Turnitin

Turnitin is a web-based application you can use to check plagiarism, grade student work and facilitate peer review among students.  It is used by an increasing number of ACU professors to manage class assignments.  It works best for grading various types of paper assignments, though it can also be used to grade other types of student work such as presentations or recitals (See the Grade Anything page on the Turnitin website for more information) .  You cannot administer quizzes or exams through Turnitin, but you can record scores from these types of assessments in the Turnitin grade book.   It is now used as a standalone web-based application, not integrated with Banner or our learning management system.

You can learn to use it by working with the Instructional Design team (David Christianson,  or  Berlin Fang,, attend a workshop (check Adams Center mail notifications of such events),  consult a colleague who has used it before, or learn it from the Turnitin training page.

Here is a quick guide to get you started:

Create an account

  • Contact Berlin Fang ( or David Christianson ( to receive an Account ID and Join Password. You will need these to create a Turnitin profile.
  • Go to
  • Click on “Create account” (beside “login”, on the upper right corner)
  • On the “Create a User Profile” page, choose “Instructor”
  • Fill out all the fields, using Account ID and Join Password that you received from Berlin or David.  Please do not share such information with anyone, as the account administrator may change the join password from time to time for account security.
  • Click on “I agree– create profile” to complete your registration

Create a class

  1. Log in to using the credentials you have created
  2. Click on “+add class”
  3. Fill out all the fields for class settings.  For class type, choose “standard” if you do not have multiple sessions of the same class.  Choose “master” if you have multiple sections and you would like to add a teaching assistant for each section.  For Class end date, you might want to add some extra time after the class is officially over as some students may want to go back and review their papers.   A good practice, as Dr. Cliff Barbarick showed us, is to set the end date to be the first day of the NEXT semester
  4. Click on “submit” to complete it

Add students

  1. From MyACU, find the class roster
  2. Export the roster into an Excel spreadsheet
  3. Go to the Excel spreadsheet, edit it to have only three columns in this sequence, first name, last name, email.  Get rid of the headings row (last name, first name, email), save the file.
  4. Go to Turnitin, click on the class in which you would like to add the students, then on your class page, click on the “students” tab on the top;
  5. Click on the “Upload Student List” tab
  6. Choose and upload the Excel file you saved
  7. Once you click “yes, submit,” students will automatically receive an email invitation to create a Turnitin profile and join the class. If students have previously created a Turnitin profile, they will automatically be added to the class.
  8. If students are having trouble getting started with Turnitin, direct them to this resource page ( to set up their account and learn how Turnitin works from a student perspective

Add an assignment

  1. Go back to your account home page
  2. Click on the name of your class
  3. Click on “+new assignment”
  4. Provide all the information you are asked for.   Click also on “optional settings” to change the settings and save your changes for future use.
  5. Set the start date (when students can submit assignments), due date (when assignments are due) and post dates (when comments and grades can be viewed by students)
  6. Click on “submit” to complete.

On this page, you will be able to find other instructions to learn how to use Turnitin as an instructor