Forgot to cite referencesMany students shy away from using plagiarism checking software, mainly because they feel they have nothing to prove and that their work is (of course) 100% original. However, using a plagiarism checker isn’t about testing your honesty, and at the end of the day we are all only human and prone to make silly mistakes from time to time.

Plagiarism checkers are an extremely effective way to check your essays or dissertations for any instances that may arise that could suggest plagiarism to a potential marker. This unique software is readily available for students who take their academic research seriously, and who want to leave no room for error.

Copying from the web

Plagiarism checking software like is completely free and extremely easy to use. So to be absolutely certain there is no risk of being accused of plagiarism, it’s essential for students to spend a few minutes online using these tools.

If you’re still not convinced, here are 5 reasons why you should scan your work:

1: Plagiarism checkers have more resources than those openly available on Google

Journal databasesSome students decide to use a search engine to cross check their work through the Internet, paragraph by paragraph. However, plagiarism checkers offer more sources and larger databases for cross referencing. Certain articles and books that are not available online are also part of the databases used with plagiarism software, which you wouldn’t find by simply copying and pasting into Google. Some scanners even search against a vast library of previous submissions from other students. So the next time you think checking your work with Google is enough; then think again! Plagiarism checking software uses the Internet and even more when accessing its own huge database.

2: Google results make it hard to see exactly what is plagiarised

Attempting to check through Google makes it extremely difficult to spot where you may have made a mistake. However, plagiarism checking software will highlight the exact content which has been matched, so you can very quickly look straight into it and see where you may have gone wrong.

3: Plagiarism software will often give you a percentage match

Plagiarism checking software also provides a total percentage of matches, or similarities. You may have already come across the software which Universities use called ‘Turnitin’, which provides teachers a percentage of plagiarism when work is scanned.

Universities often have an accepted percentage level that they want students to adhere to, so by using a plagiarism checker before the work is submitted, students can ensure the percentage of similarities are below this required number. Sometimes there's no magic number but a high percentage match will lead to an enquiry. So checking the match percentage avoids any awkward meetings you may have to have with your tutor, and avoids any issues whatsoever with being accused of plagiarism. No student ever wants to be accused or even implicated in potential dishonesty, so why take the risk when you can make certain before hand that all is well?

4: Paraphrasing is tricky to get right...

Plagiarism wish more had been yoursparaphrasing can be very difficult for even the most accomplished students, so again, why take the risk of not paraphrasing correctly when you can use a plagiarism checking software to check what you have done? Your software will highlight any content from your work which is an exact match to the author’s original text. So if you haven’t paraphrased and cited the text correctly, you will now be able to instantly solve this.

Again, lots of students are already convinced that their work is flawless and that everything has been cited correctly. This is the biggest mistake a student can make, and there is no need to take such a relaxed approach when it comes to your grades.

5: Using a scanner shows honest intentions

Finally, if for any reason you are still questioned by your tutor on certain aspects of your paper, you have a printed copy of the plagiarism check to hand that you can provide as evidence that you’ve taken the necessary precautions.

Your tutor will be open and willing to work with you in solving any issues that may arise within your research, so it’s important you have this kind of plagiarism report safely filed away that you can reveal at a moment's notice. It will instantly help you and your tutor to come to a swift conclusion that no dishonesty was intended, and to correct the work where necessary.

In conclusion:

Plagiarism has in recent years become a very serious matter and with advanced methods of detection, many more students are being accused than ever before. The reason for this is primarily down to new technology and the introduction of plagiarism checking software like Turnitin.

If you are a student reading this, then you understand the pressures of writing essays and dissertations, and the importance of getting good grades to aid you in a successful career. This immense pressure unfortunately often leads to students taking the easy way out and using the author’s original content.

Self plagiarism cartoonFor most students it may only be a couple of sentences because they are struggling to meet a deadline, and think it’s ok just this once. Unfortunately it is never ok, and this is why using a plagiarism checking software is not only extremely sensible, but it will also help you to steer clear of buckling under the pressure and taking the easy way out.

For others, no dishonesty is intended and it is just silly mistakes that cost them valuable marks. This might even include accidentally reusing ideas from a previous paper you submitted which again may not be intentional. Don't fall into this trap and lose marks for no good reason when it is so easily avoidable!

Plagiarism checking software is also the last line of defence for accidental plagiarism, and no matter how honest and hard working you are, mistakes can and will be made! So don’t take the chance and realise that just a few minutes of your time could make the difference between a pass and a fail.