Last modified
16:09, 13 Mar 2014

You can use SafeAssign to prevent plagiarism and to create opportunities to help students identify how to properly attribute sources rather than paraphrase. SafeAssign is effective as both a deterrent and an educational tool.

SafeAssign compares submitted assignments against a set of academic papers to identify areas of overlap between the submitted assignment and existing works.

SafeAssign is based on a unique text matching algorithm capable of detecting exact and inexact matching between a paper and source material. SafeAssignments are compared against several different databases, including:

  • Internet: Comprehensive index of documents available for public access on the internet.
  • ProQuest ABI/Inform database: More than 1,100 publication titles and about 2.6 million articles from 1990 to present time, updated weekly (exclusive access).
  • Institutional document archives: Contains all papers submitted to SafeAssign by users in their respective institutions.
  • Global Reference Database: Contains papers that were volunteered by students from Blackboard client institutions to help prevent cross-institution plagiarism.

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Global Reference Database

Blackboard’s Global Reference Database is a separate database where students voluntarily donate copies of their papers to help prevent plagiarism. It is separated from each institution's internal database, where all papers are stored by each corresponding institution. Students are free to select the option to check their papers without submitting them to the Global Reference Database. Students submit their papers to the database voluntarily and agree not to delete papers in the future. Submissions to the Global Reference Database are extra copies that are given voluntarily for the purpose of helping with plagiarism prevention. Blackboard does not claim ownership of submitted papers.

SafeAssign Originality Reports

After a paper has been processed, a report is generated detailing the percentage of text in the submitted paper that matches existing sources. The report also shows the suspected sources of each section of the submitted paper that returns a match. You can delete matching sources from the report and process it again. This is useful if the paper is a continuation of a previously submitted work by the same student.

Read the report carefully and investigate whether each block of text is properly attributed.

Grade Center Integration

When you create a SafeAssignment, a grade column is automatically created in the Grade Center. When a SafeAssignment is ready for grading, an exclamation mark appears in the Grade Center cell. Grade SafeAssignments from the Grade Center or access them from the Needs Grading page. 

Comparing SafeAssign and Regular Assignments

The SafeAssign tool and the assignment tool are completely separate. Both tools enable you to distribute work to individual students, but there are some key differences in the features available in each.

Comparison of SafeAssign and Regular Assignments
  SafeAssign Regular
Grade Center Integration green circle.png green circle.png
Due Dates green circle.png green circle.png
SafeAssign Report green circle.png  
Attach Files (Instructor)   green circle.png
Multiple Attempts   green circle.png
Anonymous Grading   green circle.png
Inline Grading   green circle.png
Assign to Groups   green circle.png
Rubrics   green circle.png

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