Automated methods are used to detect plagiarism. These include code-comparators for submitted programs and an Automated Source Matching Software service (currently turnitin) for reports or essays.
The scores returned by turnitin should be treated as evidence. When judging the severity of any plagiarism, account should be taken of the amount of copying involved (the turnitin score is an indication of this), the explanation the student gives, which part of the report is copied, and any other relevant factors.
Students should not be allowed to send their report to turnitin before they submit their work for assessment.