How to Beat Turnitin… What Works and What Doesn’t

How to Beat Turnitin… What Works and What Doesn’t

There is much existing writing about Turnitin. Knowledge is power when you’re trying to figure out how to cheat Turnitin.

It is definitely not a perfect piece of software. Consider some of these excerpts from relevant articles.

Paper Writing Services

Of course, a paper being written from scratch does not mean that it is a legitimate paper that follows honor codes. You can still cheat with an original paper.

A major flaw with Turnitin is that it can only detect plagiarism. Other types of cheating can get by. I found this excerpt on a custom writing service’s website who claims that it can help students cheat Turnitin by writing their papers for them:

So what is the trick to get a perfect, original paper that will let you bypass Turnitin and get you a stellar grade? Have someone else write your paper. If someone writes you a fresh paper, it will be plagiarism-free!

Turnitin can’t detect this because it isn’t plagiarism! Turnitin isn’t effective at solving for all types of academic dishonesty.

There is no way in hell that a computer algorithm can detect this kind of cheating. It isn’t designed to. And really, there is no way that it could be designed to do this. During my time as a teacher, this is one way of cheating that I could never stop.


Hiring someone else to write your paper is basically the Contra Code of getting around Turnitin. With the right writer, you can get plagiarism-free, original papers every time.

False Positives

Turnitin works by identifying phrases used elsewhere on the Internet and in previously submitted phrases. The problem is that there are many legitimate reasons why an author might use a phrase that has previously been used somewhere else. Consider this excerpt from a news article.

One major problem with the Turnitin software is that many of the phrases flagged by its detection system are not incidents of plagiarism, but commonly used phrases that define the topic of the paper, such as “global warming.”

This can be unfair to students and can artificially raise plagiarism percentages, especially for more general papers. Papers for colleges that reuse prompts are especially subject to this shortcoming.

Content Spinning

The practice of content spinning is to take existing information, such as part of a Wikipedia article, and changing it to be phrased differently, generally by switching words to other words with the same meaning. For example, changing “the dog was really fat” to “his dog was super obese.”

Turnitin says that it has scripts that can figure out if a paper has simply been run through a thesaurus. However, these scripts are flawed. When done correctly, Turnitin can’t detect this.

Essentially, this is uncited paraphrasing. It is an effective method to beat Turnitin. This is perhaps the best method to beat Turnitin besides writing a paper from scratch.


All in all, Turnitin is a tool that is imperfect. It can detect plagiarism in some cases, but can be flawed. Take it with a grain of salt. And for students: If you need to get around Turnitin, there are some tricks that you can use. Consider the content of this article and you now know how to beat Turnitin.

These 3 Tricks Will Help You Beat Plagiarism Checkers Like Turnitin

Tired of being chastised for unintended plagiarism?

You know software is not heaven-sent when, after beating all odds to sit and pen what you thought is a decent paper, your plagiarism detection software smacks you in the face and screams out loud—Plagiarism detected!

It is nerve-wracking frustrating.

But that tiny piece of correspondence carries a lot of load to any student who’s unfortunate enough to collide with it head-on. It is especially fatal when you get such a response and the paper is due in just over an hour (well, sometimes minutes).

But in a digital world where every source material you quote is sitting pretty somewhere online, plagiarism checkers can be hard to beat.

So, how do you turn off the likes of Turnitin plagiarism software without actually pissing and turning off your professor?

We know a few tricks to beat plagiarism checkers—all the while reveling in the fact you put your best hand forward and did decent, original work. Beating the system is simple.

How to Fool Plagiarism Detection Software

  1. Cite Tweets

Whatever piece of academic information you need to inject power and pizzazz into your paper, you’ll find related, punchy information on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, among others.


Twitter is especially powerful for several reasons:

  • Tweets are practically bouts of conversation, and what better way to find relevant data fast and in quotable form?
  • Twitter is largely used by authority figures and scientific publishers in different areas of study. Many companies use Twitter for official uses—unlike Facebook and Google+ where finding official pages also may pull up several dummies instead. Remember you are allowed to cite official pages.
  • There are millions of hashtags on plenty of study areas that you pull up by simply searching a particular hashtag.

Citing social media is now acceptable at most universities. To beat plagiarism checkers this way, do it right this way.

  1. Use Answers from Online threads

If your online savvy has leveled up over time, find a discussion platform online where they discuss issues you consider relevant to your academic research. Professors and learned friends like to show off their gray matter prowess by using technical and not-so-technical wording in such discussions.

Use the language they use there on your work. It’ll most likely be readily paraphrased and after changing a few words here and there you can have yourself a solid, original section.

Not only that. Every profession has “buzzwords” that members identify with. Most discussions among like-minded professors and practitioners spark with heavy use of such buzzwords. Automatically, when you use these terms, you’ll strike a nerve with your professor—proving you actually do understand what you are talking about.

You get to nail two birds in one smart sweep.

  1. Apply the Oldest (and Best) Trick Ever

This is by far the strongest way to beat plagiarism checkers such as Grammarly, Turnitin, and IThenticate. It also happens to be the toughest one.

Manually paraphrase your work.

While they have worked before, tricks such as word laundering (tweaking keywords in a statement), applying extensive synonyms, and converting doctored Word write-ups into PDF documents may no longer work as effectively as before.

And not even Google Translate will be effective for jumbling the structure and exact wording in a sentence to beat plagiarism detection software now.

According to the Senior Lecturer of Computing at the University of Surrey, Dr. James Heather, new plagiarism checker algorithm improvements now come with secondary Optical Character Recognition (OCR algorithm).

OCR will detect depths of plagiarism by interpreting plagiarism marks on a rendered copy, which is pretty much what a human reader would do.

Still, using social media bites and bytes, mining discussion forums online and pumping your creativity to paraphrase research works will ensure plagiarism checkers can’t touch your writing.

Turnitin: Can’t Live With It; Can’t Live Without It

I have a love-hate relationship with Turnitin. I love it because of its accuracy, the highlights and pointing out the text source but I hate it because of the same reason. For a semester, I taught technical writing in a local college and students are given the same page for instruction each time. They write their piece below it and voila, the Turnitin counter goes crazy making them all 100% plagiarized. Here goes accuracy!


Even if it’s 8:04 PM on the night before your paper is due, you can still take the time to get around Turnitin effectively.

In my campus, we got Turnitin combined with another curriculum-learning portal. The students submit their essays in the portal with an embedded Turnitin system. It was a disaster, at least when students has to follow the same format or the instruction given by the teacher. For the real plagiarism score, I need to look at them one by one.
But certainly, Turnitin as a software itself has many great features. It is also a sure fire way to get your students working diligently. I say, it is a foolproof system if you are serious about catching students who were sleeping on the job.

There are many suggested conventional trick to beat the Turnitin algorithm. Among them include confusing the program by swapping letters, or words, or phrases. Possible but doing so would probably cause more harm than good. Imagine spelling, context and content errors. Similarly, why not swap it with a letter from another language such as archaic, Germanic or Greek letters. Sounds innovative but as a teacher, I would worry about spelling and they certainly will all look like typos.

Another claim made by any is saving the file into .pdf instead of .doc or docx. Sounds clever? Nah. Turnitin reads .pdf too. Doing this silly trick will make screwed more than you already are.

Going against the algorithm of Turnitin is a futile exercise. The software is constantly updated hence there is no way you or your friends can trick the already tricky system.
However, there are ways to make sure you can around Turnitin plagiarism scan system.

  • Paraphrase, Paraphrase, Paraphrase. Next to good researching is excellent paraphrasing. Whenever you need a text from a source, you first need to understand, reflect on and paraphrase the text. Copy pasting is so 2000. Avoid it at all cost.
  • Rewrite but don’t change the meaning. One of the best ways to avoid getting a high Turnitin percentage is to make sure you know what the text is about. Once you have a full understanding, it is time to rewrite. Once rewritten, Turnitin would be able to compare patterns of writing. Yes, there are patterns.
  • Write it yourself. If you have that little gift of writing, nurture it. There is nothing better than celebrating a good honest grade than someone who resorted to the “easy way” out of college.

If you have no skill or time for writing, there are groups of writers who are more than willing to help you with your essay for a modest fee. Check for authenticity and avoid those who tends to overcharge knowledge!

So going back to the question, can you possibly cheat Turnitin?

Unless you are the program develop who knows the sequence codes, then maybe but if you know nothing about system designs, sit down and find time to write your own paper instead!

How to Beat Turnitin 2017

How to Beat Turnitin 2017

I did some research on Turnitin’s website. It seems that they provide information to students. Check out the link below:

Click to access Answers_to_Questions_Students_Ask.pdf

It is interesting information, although somewhat biased. For example, while they talk about protecting student copyright, that isn’t always the case. Lawsuits have been raised against the company. They use your papers for commercial purposes without your consent.

Students and teachers should think twice before using Turnitin.

Post-Thanksgiving: Back to School

Post-Thanksgiving: Back to School

I had a great Thanksgiving and hope that my readers have too. It has been a great journey so far.

I’ve gotten more and more readers lately, which seems to be in part because of how involved and busy students and teachers are at this time of year.

If you’re thinking about taking some… shortcuts on your papers *cough* plagiarizing *cough* this is the time of year to do it. If you do choose to plagiarize, make sure that you do so safely and effectively.

Wishing you the best of luck at the most stressful time of year…

Louis Stone