Advanced Similarity Report settings

When creating a paper assignment, you may select to view and change any of the advanced assignment options. The advanced assignment options are viewed by clicking the + Optional Settings link.

Generate Similarity Reports for submissions?

Select whether you would like Similarity Reports to be generated for submissions to the assignment. If you have chosen to set this to Yes, continue to step 2. If you prefer to set this option to No, please skip to step3.

If the assignment is set to accept any file type Turnitin will only generate Similarity Reports for the following file types:

Microsoft Word; PowerPoint; WordPerfect; PostScript; PDF; HTML; RTF; OpenOffice (ODT); Hangul (HWP); Google Docs; Slides; and Sheets (submitted via the Google Drive submission option); and plain text files.

Report generation and resubmission options

Select from the dropdown list when, after student submission, that you would like Similarity Reports to be generated. There are three options for this assignment setting:

  • Immediately (first report is final) - Similarity Reports for all submissions will be generated immediately. Students cannot resubmit papers. Submissions must be deleted by the instructor to enable resubmission.
  • Immediately (can overwrite reports until due date) - Students may resubmit as often they need to until the due date. Similarity Reports for the initial submission, and the next three resubmissions, will generate immediately.

    The first three resubmissions will generate a new Similarity Report straight away. After three attempts, a 24-hour wait is enforced to generate Similarity Reports for all subsequent resubmissions.

    Resubmission attempts are shared between you and your students. If you attempt to resubmit on their behalf, one of their attempts will be used.

    Only the latest submission is available to the instructor or student. Previous versions are overwritten.

    Similarity Reports will regenerate within an hour of the due date and time to allow student submissions to compare against one another within the assignment. A change in the Similarity Report similarity index may result from the regeneration of the reports. This option is typically used when students are self-reviewing and revising their submissions and able to view the Similarity Report. No resubmissions are allowed after the due date and time of the assignment.

  • On due date - Similarity Reports will not be generated for any submission until the due date and time of the assignment. Students may resubmit as many times as needed until the due date and time without receiving reports. Resubmissions may not be made after the due date and time of the assignment.

If an instructor chooses to grade without a student submission and the Immediately first report is final is selected, students will not be able to submit to the assignment once the Grading Template is created.

Excluding the bibliography

Select whether you would like text appearing in the bibliography, works cited, or references sections of assignments to be excluded from being checked for matches in the Similarity Index when generating Similarity Reports. This setting can be overridden in individual Similarity Reports.

Excluding quotes

Select whether you would like text appearing in the quotes of an assignment to be excluded from being checked for matches in the Similarity Index when generating Similarity Reports. This setting can be overridden in individual Similarity Reports.

Excluding small sources

The exclude small sources feature works by excluding sources in the source list that are below a set word count or percentage threshold. For example, if the threshold is set to 3%, any 1% or 2% match would be removed from the current report's source list (Match Overview or All Sources). With this feature, you have greater control over sifting out smaller sources, allowing you to focus on larger, more problematic and suspect sources within Similarity Reports.

Once yes has been selected, a yellow box will appear allowing you to set the source exclusion threshold.


This setting can be overridden or adjusted in individual Similarity Reports via the Turnitin Viewer. You can adjust the exclude small sources assignment setting at any time by clicking the edit icon to the right of the assignment name.

Allow access to Similarity Reports

Choose whether you would like your students to view the Similarity Reports for their submissions to this assignment. This option gives instructors more flexibility and control when creating assignments.

Repository options

If the repository options are enabled for an instructor by the administrator, two or four options will appear within the Submit papers to dropdown list. Select from the dropdown list where you would like papers to be submitted to. The settings provide you with the ability to select whether papers are stored in a Turnitin standard paper repository, your institution's paper repository, the student's choice of paper repository, or no repository at all.

The benefit of submitting papers to the standard paper repository is that student papers can be compared against by students from others institutions. You can engage with Instructors from other institutions to help each other investigate potential cases of academic misconduct.

However, by selecting to submit papers to the institution's paper repository, this means that the assignment will only be available for comparison against other students' submissions within the institution. The papers will still be compared against all of the Turnitin databases you have selected.

If you select no repository, your students' papers will not be stored in the Turnitin standard paper repository or the institution's paper repository, therefore meaning that the papers will not be checked for collusion between students of the same or different institutions.


The search options setting allows you to select which Turnitin repositories students' submissions will be checked against when processing Similarity Reports for papers. This allows an instructor to disregard a source type if the comparison against this type of source is not needed. The similarity index percentage may decrease if a repository option is deselected.

The available search targets are listed under Search options. The targets with a check mark are those that will be searched. To remove a search target repository, click on the check box to remove the check mark. Clicking on an empty selection box next to the repository will re-add the repository as a search target. This selection will not alter any currently generated Similarity Reports or Overall Similarity Index scores.

The currently available search targets are:

  • Student paper repository - works previously submitted in classes and assignments on Turnitin.
  • Institution paper repository - a private repository of student papers unique to your institution.
  • Current and archived internet - a repository of archived and live publicly available internet pages containing billions of pages of existing content and tens of thousands of new pages added daily.
  • Periodicals, journals, & publications - third party periodical, journal, and publication content including many major professional journals, periodicals, and business publications.

Changing advanced assignment option defaults

If any changes have been made to the advanced assignment options, an additional option will be available at the bottom of the options panel. The instructor is asked Would you like to save these options as your defaults for future assignments? Tick the box to have all future assignment creations use the advanced assignment options that have been selected as the default setting. Leave the box empty to continue with the previous default advanced assignment option settings.

The default settings can be changed at any time when creating a new assignment or updating an existing assignment.