Plagiarism detector Turnitin is developing a system to spot ChatGPT

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Law students beware!

Popular essay plagiarism software Turnitin is working on a new tool to detect if students have used AI bots like ChatGPT.

Turnitin is a plagiarism detection service commonly used by universties, including law schools. Their software produces a percentage score identifying similarities with existing sources.

The recent boom in AI chatbots has triggered the company to start its own AI Innovation Lab in a bid to outsmart the bots and detect the use of AI writing tools.

In a recent YouTube video, Turnitin developer David Adamson demonstrated how the new software will work. After inputing an essay written by ChatGPT and edited by himself, the system calculated that 50% of the essay was produced by AI, even identifying that 22 of the 43 sentences were not of human origin.

While the tool is still in the testing phase the team is hoping it will be ready soon.

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“Our model has been trained specifically on academic writing sourced from a comprehensive database, as opposed to solely publicly available content,” explained Turnitin’s chief product officer, Annie Chechitelli, in a blog post. “As a result, Turnitin is more tuned to finding instances of potential dishonesty in student assignments,”

CEO Chris Caren added that while the company’s current products already offer some level of AI detection, more would be needed in the future. “We will incorporate our latest AI writing detection capabilities — including those that recognize ChatGPT writing — into our in-market products for educator use in 2023,” he said.

The issue of AI-based cheating is a hot topic at the moment, with many universities reassessing their rules concerning assessments. Legal Cheek recently reported concerns from a top barrister that students cheating with ChatGPT could damage degree credibility.

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Completely pointless. It’s difficult enough to prove plagiarism even with identifiable source material. With Chat GPT et al the dishonest student will say that they wrote it themselves and it will be impossible to prove otherwise. Sadly, this is one of the reasons why take-home exams will fairly quickly devalue degrees, to the detriment of those who are honest.


I passed the Turing test

“Sadly, this is one of the reasons why take-home exams will fairly quickly devalue degrees, to the detriment of those who are honest.”

It’s not like ChatGPT is currently advanced enough to write first-class scripts. Who cares if some enterprising 2.2 students scrape a low 2.1 instead? Also, supervised take-home exams are a thing.


Non issue

You can’t even get a 2.1 nor a third with ChatGPT. It’s very helpful for research but it has numerous mistakes and inconsistencies in its prose. If you decide to ask it to write an essay, unless you’re at a very mediocre university (nothing wrong with this), you will obtain a fail grade.



my mom is working on this project at turnitin right now and i dont understand how it works but it is so cool:D



Completely pointless exercise. So an Ivy League University is going to accuse a student of cheating just because Turnitin says so. I don’t think so, the student could and probably should take legal action, especially if they are paying tens thousands for a degree and get ((accused)) of cheating.



Universities try to do so much to clamp down on plagiarism, if only they put this much effort into ensuring that students actually get the classes they paid for


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