Turnitin is a web-based assignment evaluation tool that can be used by both instructors and students at UW-Madison. Used for evaluating students’ online assignment submissions, Turnitin promotes originality in student work by comparing submitted assignments with similar content from multiple sources. It also helps students check for proper formatting of citations in their work.

Key Features

  • Highlights similarities to a collection of internet, academic, and student content from UW-Madison and other sources
  • Allows instructors to provide students the option of viewing their similarity report when submitting assignments or after assignments are graded
  • Offers the Feedback Studio, where instructors can place drag-and-drop comment bubbles in the content, leave text or voice comments, and evaluate based on rubrics 
  • Seamlessly integrates with the Canvas interface, including the Gradebook and SpeedGrader


Turnitin is integrated with Canvas at UW-Madison, and should only be accessed through Canvas and not Turnitin’s website. Within Canvas, instructors can configure assignment submission settings for Turnitin and can also view results of similarity reports. If given the option by their instructor, students can view Turnitin similarity results when submitting assignments in Canvas or after receiving a grade on the assignment. 

Instructional Uses

Turnitin is for use by instructors who are conducting assignments in Canvas that require online uploads/submissions.  

Turnitin is a teaching and evaluation tool which benefits students and instructors alike. It can help with the following instructional needs:

  • Comparing Canvas assignment submissions with other content to identify, and correct, unintentional use of someone else’s material
  • Helping students better understand how to properly format citations and quotations in their work
  • Grading submissions that have been checked in Turnitin, including leaving audio comments, using drag-and-drop feedback tags, and typing comments in line

Getting Started

Turnitin is available from within Canvas. Instructors simply configure Turnitin when setting up a Canvas assignment that requires an online submission. Instructors can also view the similarity check results within Canvas. For instructions, please see the Learn@UW-Madison Turnitin “Getting Started” guide.

Turnitin similarity checking for students is available only if the instructor enables it on a particular assignment. 

Helpful Resources


The DoIT Help Desk provides instructors, staff and students with free tech support and troubleshooting help by phone at 608.264.4357, email at help@doit.wisc.edu and chat at helpdesk.wisc.edu. In-person support is also available at the DoIT Help Desk service desk in the Computer Sciences building. Visit helpdesk.wisc.edu for hours and more information.

Instructors and instructional staff can also request a consultation through the DoIT Help Desk. A DoIT AT consultant will help you select and use the right learning technology to improve student success. In addition, the Learn@UW KnowledgeBase offers helpful documents for instructors, course owners and students.