Answered By: Jennifer Harris
Last Updated: Apr 29, 2019     Views: 4646

Plagiarism checkers are software that can be used to cross-check text for duplicated content (this may include quoted material, paraphrased material, similarities in wording, etc.). These tools help to ensure that writing is original and correctly cited.

In general, plagiarism is the use, whether by paraphrase or direct quotation, of another’s published or unpublished work without full and clear acknowledgment. Remember that direct quotes with a clear acknowledgement are usually appropriate if not overused but that copying another’s work word for word outside of a direct quotation, even with acknowledgement, is likely to be considered plagiarism. Plagiarism is often unintentional - -you may not realize that you have accidentally plagiarized so using a plagiarism checker can help you determine if and where plagiarism may have occurred so it can be corrected. SNHU’s Academic Honesty Policy provides more information on SNHU’s definition of plagiarism.

The following are some examples of plagiarism checkers:

  • Turnitin: A plagiarism prevention system used at SNHU. Turnitin is accessible through Brightspace, but not every course uses this tool. If Turnitin is being used in a course, a student submits a paper and Turnitin checks it for plagiarism against content on the web, other student papers, and selected online library databases.
  • Grammarly: A free online plagiarism checker that can also assist with grammar and proofreading.
  • WriteCheck: A student version of Turnitin that is available for purchase.

Additionally, a simple Google search can oftentimes detect plagiarism. Instructors often put a sentence or two of a student's paper into Google to see if there are any close matches.

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