Turnitin is a Web-based service that identifies passages in submitted papers that match passages in other sources, such as websites, articles in scholarly journals, and other student papers. TurnItIn then generates an Originality Report, which highlights passages of matching text. See more information on Turnitin here. Turnitin does not state outright whether or not plagiarism has occurred. Plagiarism is a large category that includes many different behaviors, ranging from poorly paraphrasing a cited source to purchasing a paper and submitting it as one’s own work. While no software can make a blanket statement about whether a paper contains plagiarism, Turnitin does provide originality reports that show which passages from submitted papers match other sources. To make a determination about whether a paper contains plagiarized material, analysis is required. Originality reports make analysis easier and more convenient.

Yes, any course using this software should include a statement in the syllabus. You may use or adapt the following:

“Your instructor may ask you to submit one or more of your writing assignments to the Turnitin plagiarism prevention service via Canvas (do not submit directly to the Turnitin website). Your assignment content will be checked against Internet sources, academic journal articles, and the papers of other OSU students, for common or borrowed content.  Turnitin generates a report that highlights any potentially unoriginal text in your paper. Papers that you submit through Turnitin for this class or any class will be added to the OSU Turnitin database and may be checked against other OSU paper submissions.  You will retain all rights to your written work."

Turnitin originality reports are especially effective in helping students diagnose problematic passages in their own papers and in helping guide revision of early drafts. By providing clearly marked reports that identify passages that match other sources, originality reports guide students through a careful step by step analysis of their own work.
Originality Reports should usually be ready within 15 minutes. However it may take up to 24 hours during peak times such as the middle or the end of semesters when many papers are being submitted to Turnitin. Plan accordingly when working on a deadline. If an instructor allows multiple submissions on a Turnitin assignment there is a 24-hour waiting period between the each submission. This delay allows resubmissions to correctly generate without matching to a student's previous draft.

Yes. Data is kept secure at all times and is only used for purposes of assisting the instructor in assessing the assignment. Students always maintain ownership of any work submitted to Turnitin.