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5 ways to trick Turnitin in 2020

Although Turnitin has a sophisticated algorithm and a huge database, you can still trick it by using these tips.

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Many students are always wondering how they can trick Turnitin. Some people say this plagiarism detection service is so good that it will certainly find plagiarism in your papers, no matter what tricks you try. However, there are also many students who say that they’ve managed to fool Turnitin, and they share their tips online.

The originality of academic papers is crucial for a student’s future in their university or college. If you submit a plagiarized paper to your professor, you will face serious consequences. Although the punishment may vary in different institutions, students often get expelled for academic dishonesty.

However, even if you write a completely original paper from scratch, Turnitin or another plagiarism service may still detect plagiarized elements in your content because the internet is big, and writing completely unique content is a challenge. To provide an original paper, you should know how Turnitin works and what it may or may not like about your work.

What Is Turnitin?

Turnitin is arguably the most popular plagiarism detection service. At first, it was only used by teachers and professors so that they can check their students’ work for plagiarism. This tool has also been useful in other areas of the academic world because it has helped people make sure that their quotes and paraphrased content are properly formatted and attributed. Now Turnitin is commercial software. Everyone can create a Turnitin account, and 30 million people from all over the world use it all the time.

The main reason why Turnitin is so popular is that it’s unbelievably accurate. This software compares the submitted materials with a lot of content available online. Turnitin has a huge database that consists of three main categories.

  • Turnitin has a database of various academic papers on different topics that have been previously submitted to this service. An interesting fact about Turnitin is that students didn’t actually give it permission to store their academic papers. As a result, this source has faced many accusations of copyright infringement.

You can test Turnitin by submitting a paper that you’ve previously checked with this service. Turnitin will show that your paper is plagiarized and mark it as “submitted to your university.”

  • This service also has access to paid materials from various scientific magazines and academic journals.
  • In addition, Turnitin compares the submitted papers to indexed online content that is accessible to everyone.

What You Shouldn’t Try

There are many methods used by students that have proven to be ineffective. Turnitin algorithms are quite sophisticated so they are difficult to fool. For instance, you won’t be able to trick Turnitin by simply replacing words with synonyms. There is also a less obvious approach, which involves replacing Latin letters with letters from other alphabets that look similar. For instance, you may replace Latin “a” and “e” with Cyrillic “а” and “е.” Turnitin knows about this trick so it will automatically replace foreign letters with Latin ones.

Some people also claim that you can hide plagiarized content if you use Microsoft Word macros and submit your paper as a .docx document. The truth is that Turnitin can easily scan Word documents and recognize macros. There is also a trick that involves replacing spaces with white symbols. Don’t try it because Turnitin will read your text entirely, regardless of the color of the text. Your words will be marked as unusually lengthy, and your text won’t pass the check.

What You Should Do

  • Change the Structure

You can make your text more original by rewriting it and changing the original structure of the source. The easiest approach is to consider words that are located at the beginning and the end of a sentence, switching them and rewriting the sentence so that it will look natural.

Unfortunately, this method is difficult to use because most sentences will lose their meaning if you change the positions of words. You can only use this approach if you’re sure that the structure of the new sentence will be 100% grammatically correct.

  • Use Paraphrasing

High-quality paraphrasing is probably the best way to fool Turnitin or another plagiarism service. You should rewrite sentences and replace words with synonyms so that the new text will have a different sentence structure and will be completely unique, while also saving its initial meaning.

Obviously, this method takes a lot of time and requires you to have well-developed writing skills. A disadvantage of this method is that you won’t be able to fool your professor. A human expert will still be able to tell whether your content was paraphrased or not.

  • Use the Passive Voice

We recommend that you only use this method if you’re good at writing because it requires you to put quite a bit of creativity into the rewriting process. However, if you’re a good writer, you might know that the passive voice can only be used in certain types of academic writing.

For instance, you cannot use it in argumentative and narrative papers. However, you can still rewrite sentences using the passive voice in some academic areas when using a formal scientific style.

  • Use Images

It’s really difficult for a machine to read text from an image, and you can use this feature to trick Turnitin. However, if you convert your text into an image, you should use the right format. Students used to be able to submit their PDF files to Turnitin but PDF files are no longer supported.

However, Turnitin still supports PowerPoint presentations so you can turn your text into a PowerPoint document, converting unoriginal sections to images. Keep in mind that Turnitin will skip images but check textual descriptions so they must be original.

  • Translate From Other Languages

If you know another language, you can find materials on the necessary topic written in that language and then translate them into English. In this case, the new text will have a unique structure. You can even translate complete academic papers from another language and get original papers in English. The only possible issue with this method is that somebody may have already translated a certain paper before.


Although Turnitin has a sophisticated algorithm and a huge database, you can still trick it by using our tips. Of course, these methods require you to do a lot of work and to use your creative skills. However, these tricks will certainly increase the originality of your writing so that you won’t be afraid to be accused of plagiarism.

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