What is Turnitin?

Students in most Business graduate, IT graduate, and IT undergraduate programs will be transitioning to the integrated process for submission of performance assessments. During the transition, students may be submitting performance assessments in Taskstream or in their course.


To identify if you are part of the integrated submission process access your Course via the Student Portal and navigate to the assessment specific information. If you do not see a Taskstream Button but something similar to the screenshot below, please click here for additional information on submitting a performance assessment through your course.







For questions regarding the access to performance assessments, please contact Assessment Services team.



Turnitin is an Internet-based plagiarism-prevention service that checks a paper’s originality. When a paper is uploaded to Turnitin, it is compared against all the material already stored in the Turnitin database. This database includes current Internet documents, archived Internet data, periodicals, journals, publications, and previously submitted student papers. If there is text in the new submission that matches something already in the database, the matching text will be highlighted in a Turnitin Originality Report. The Originality Report indicates by percentages how similar the submission is to other work in the database. Turnitin does not detect or determine plagiarism; it just detects matching text and provides a report for review.


To request an originality report prior to submitting your work to Taskstream, follow the steps below after uploading your files.

1. Select the “Scores/Results” tab without clicking the “SUBMIT WORK” button.


  1. Click on the “Request Report” button. After a short time, the “Originality Report” button will populate in Taskstream. Click on it to open the Originality Report page. 
  1. This page shows the title of the work, date submitted, and a colored square icon with the Originality Score. The colored icon is linked to the overall similarity percentage:


  • blue - no matching words
  • green - one matching word - 24% matching
  • yellow - 25-49% matching
  • orange - 50-74% matching
  • red - 75-100% matching


WGU allows no more than 30% of a submission to be quoted or closely paraphrased from sources and no more than 10% from any individual source.


  1. Click the “Full Report” button. The report opens in a new window.
  2. If necessary, click on “Text-Only Report” in bottom right-hand corner.
  3. The "Text-Only Report" has three main sections: Paper Information, Paper Text, and Matching Sources. 


  • Paper Information: The top section of the report shows the information about the paper, including the title, author, date of submission and similarity information. 
  • Paper Text (student paper): The left side of the Originality report shows the text-only version of the submitted paper. Any text matching to text in the Turnitin database will be highlighted and numbered to correspond with the sources on the right side of the report. 
  • Matching Sources: Any matching sources will be listed on the right side of the report in order of magnitude. In order to accurately view the highest individual match percentage, you will need to go to the drop down menu at the top of this section and choose “Show Matches One at a Time.” The percentage that shows in the first box in that list is the highest individual match.



Note: The source listed on the right side of the screen may not be the source actually used in writing the paper. It may be a secondary source, which also matches the source used by the writer. 


  1. Click on a colored section of the work to view the matching source text. If the match is to another student’s paper, the matching source text will not be shown.
  2. Evaluate the report:
  • Does the paper match work previously submitted to Taskstream? 
  • Is the highlighted section cited appropriately? 
  • Is the paper paraphrased correctly? 
  • Is the majority of the text original writing (not quoted or paraphrased)? 
  • Is the match to the given information in the task directions? 
  • Is the match to the references? 


A high percentage does not necessarily mean a plagiarized paper. Remember that in most cases WGU only allows a 30% overall similarity index with no more than 10% from any individual source, even if cited correctly. 


Note: When an assessment is submitted to Taskstream, it is uploaded to the Turnitin database, and in most cases an Originality Report is generated, regardless of whether you requested one previously.




Article Number: 48108






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