Does Turnitin Detect Quillbot? Yes - Here's How

Does Turnitin Detect Quillbot? Yes - Here's How
"This DESTROYED My ChatGPT Workflow!"
- Ezekiel Whitlock, Forbes Editor
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Yes, Turnitin Can Detect Quillbot Paraphrased Content

Turnitin, a tool I and many others use often to check the originality of texts, is VERY effective in recognizing content that has been generated by AI and then altered using tools like Quillbot. For instance, if you input text generated by ChatGPT and modify it using Quillbot, Turnitin can still flag this as AI-generated based on underlying patterns that don’t change much with simple paraphrasing. The software scans for consistency in style and vocabulary that are often telltale signs of AI authorship.

When using Quillbot to paraphrase your own genuine writing, however, Turnitin generally does not flag this as problematic, provided the original content was predominantly your creation. This distinction is crucial; it means you should always ensure that the bulk of your submission reflects your own ideas and expression.

So, before you try to use Quillbot to cheat on your next assignment, think twice! 

What Is Quillbot?

Quillbot paraphrasing user interface and settings

Quillbot is a very popular tool that finds synonyms for words. It is commonly used on AI-generated text from AI language models such as ChatGPT, but its utility extends far beyond just that. Here’s a breakdown of how I use Quillbot and what makes it an indispensable part of my writing toolkit.

QuillBot’s default method focuses on finding synonyms and rephrasing sentences. It’s good at maintaining the original meaning, but this can lead to predictable and formulaic results. After using it frequently, I noticed patterns in the outputs that made the text sound robotic and unnatural. This is a common issue when the tool is used without significant human intervention.

Paraphrasing Tool

At its core, Quillbot serves as a paraphrasing tool. This means it takes the text you input and rewords it using artificial intelligence. I frequently use this feature when I want to avoid redundancy in my documents or simply improve the flow of my content. What's great about Quillbot is that it doesn’t just swap out words; it actually restructures sentences if needed, making the rephrased text sound natural and professional.

When you’re on the Quillbot platform, simply paste your text into the main text box or type it directly. Once your text is in, you hit the paraphrase button located at the bottom right of the text box. The tool then processes your input and offers different versions of your text. You can choose the 'Standard' mode for straightforward paraphrasing, but there are other options too—like making your text simpler or more formal, depending on what you need (this can be selected from a drop-down menu at the top of the paraphrase box).

Real-World Examples and Performance

When using QuillBot for student essays, I observed that it often produces verbose and wordy text. This is because it tries to avoid direct duplication, leading to longer, more complicated sentences. For instance, a simple sentence like “The cat sat on the mat” could become “The feline positioned itself atop the floor covering.” While technically correct, this transformation can make the writing sound artificial.

In a batch of ten essays, QuillBot’s paraphrasing made the text noticeably non-human in about seven cases. This is a significant issue when trying to pass the writing off as original, as detection tools like Turnitin can flag such content easily.

Enhancing QuillBot’s Output

To improve the quality of the paraphrased text, I found that manual editing is essential. After QuillBot generates its version, I review each sentence to ensure it sounds natural and fits the context. This extra step is crucial to humanize the text and avoid detection by AI detection tools & plagiarism checkers.

For instance, instead of letting QuillBot turn “Students need to study hard” into “Learners must exert significant effort in their academic pursuits,” I would adjust it to something more natural, like “Students should focus on their studies.”

Grammar Checking and Plagiarism Detection

In addition to paraphrasing, Quillbot comes equipped with grammar checking and plagiarism detection functionalities. These features are particularly useful when I need to ensure my writing is not only unique but also error-free. The grammar checker analyzes your text and highlights errors or awkward phrasing, similar to tools like Grammarly (which isn't as accurate).

What Is Turnitin?

turnitin AI detector functionality displayed

Turnitin is a tool that checks students' work for signs of academic misuse. This includes signs of plagiarism, signs of AI text generator usage, and more. As someone who has used Turnitin extensively, I've found it incredibly helpful for maintaining the standards required by educational institutions.

Used By Schools & Universities

Educators around the world trust Turnitin. In my experience, this tool has shown a high success rate in identifying AI-generated content. A staggering 98% of institutions that use Turnitin have activated its AI writing detection capabilities. This feature adds a layer of trust as it demonstrates Turnitin's effectiveness compared to other available detectors.

Designed For School Work

What sets Turnitin's AI detector apart is its specialization in student writing. With over 25 years of experience, Turnitin has refined its algorithms to distinguish between AI-generated and human-written content effectively. This specialization is critical because it understands the nuances of academic writing better than general-purpose detectors. When I submit papers, the feedback is not only quick but impressively accurate, reflecting Turnitin's deep learning from decades of data.

Integration Available

One of the most practical features of Turnitin is how it integrates into existing educational workflows. For instance, the AI detector is part of the Similarity Report, which you can access directly through your learning management system. This integration means there's no need for additional steps in your process—you get a comprehensive report that includes potential AI involvement alongside the usual plagiarism check.

Turnitin's Accuracy At Detecting AI

I actually recently tested the accuracy of Turnitin amongst other AI detection tools. Turnitin claims to detect AI-generated writing with 98% accuracy, including content from ChatGPT. I decided to put this to the test myself to see how reliable it really is.

In my experience, Turnitin's performance varies. When I submitted several essays, it correctly identified AI-generated content in about six out of sixteen essays. For three essays, it either missed the AI content or flagged original writing as AI-generated. One example was an essay with only 8% AI content, which was incorrectly flagged.

This discrepancy shows that Turnitin's AI detection isn't foolproof. When using Turnitin, I noticed that it's better at catching straightforward AI-generated text but struggles with content that's been significantly edited or humanized.

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Does Quillbot Remove AI Detection? Here's A Test To See If Turnitin Can Detect Quillbot

I recently conducted a thorough test to evaluate how effective Turnitin is at detecting AI-generated text, even after it's been altered using Quillbot. I used 10 samples that I created with ChatGPT. These samples varied widely – different sentence lengths, topics, overall article lengths, and tones were all tested to see how Turnitin handled each variation.

My Testing Process

To start, I generated text using ChatGPT, making sure to cover a broad spectrum of content. Once I had these samples, I used Quillbot to paraphrase them, aiming to obscure any digital footprints that might hint at their AI origin. After paraphrasing, I uploaded each piece to Turnitin, meticulously checking how the system flagged each document.

Results - Does Turnitin Detect Quillbot?

Fortunately, AI-generated text, even after being processed through Quillbot will be detected by Turnitin.

Turnitin has improved its algorithms and can now detect paraphrasing done by tools like Quillbot. This detection focuses on recognizing the unique patterns and structures characteristic of AI-generated content.

Why Turnitin Can Detect Quillbot

Quillbot is designed to rephrase content, but AI-generated text often has detectable patterns. Turnitin's advanced technology identifies these patterns and flags them. So, relying on Quillbot to avoid plagiarism detection is no longer effective.

The results were quite revealing. Turnitin identified each of my 10 samples as being AI-generated to some degree. The lowest score of AI content detection was 64%, with some samples reaching higher percentages. This test showed that despite Quillbot's capability to significantly alter the text structure and flow, Turnitin's algorithms could still sniff out the underlying AI-generated nature of the content.

Test Subject % AI Generated
Test subject 197%
Test subject 276%
Test subject 366%
Test subject 486%
Test subject 564%
Test subject 699%
Test subject 776%
Test subject 868%
Test subject 987%
Test subject 1069%

Practical Implications for Users

If you frequently use Quillbot for paraphrasing, be aware that Turnitin's new capabilities mean your paraphrased text may still be flagged. This change means you'll need to be more cautious and perhaps reconsider your approach to avoid plagiarism detection.

Why Not To Use Quillbot To Bypass Turnitin

  • Formulaic Outputs: Repeated use leads to predictable patterns in sentence structure, making the text appear robotic and easily identifiable by AI detection tools.
  • Verbose and Wordy Text: QuillBot often replaces simple words with more complex synonyms, resulting in unnecessarily complicated sentences that can sound unnatural.
  • Lack of Human Touch: The generated text lacks the subtle nuances and contextual understanding that human writing has, making it easier for detection tools to flag it.
  • Inconsistent Tone and Voice: The paraphrased text might not maintain a consistent writing style, which can raise red flags during manual reviews.
  • Over-reliance on Synonyms: QuillBot’s primary method of paraphrasing involves synonym replacement, which can be easily detected by advanced AI algorithms looking for such patterns.
  • Detection by Plagiarism Checkers: Tools like Turnitin can still identify the underlying structure of the original text, even after paraphrasing, leading to potential flags for AI-generated content.
  • Need for Significant Human Intervention: To humanize the text and avoid detection, substantial rewriting and manual editing are required, defeating the purpose of using an automated tool.
  • Contextual Misinterpretations: QuillBot might not always grasp the context correctly, leading to awkward or incorrect rephrasing that can alert AI detection systems.
  • Limited Efficacy with Complex Texts: For more sophisticated writing, QuillBot’s paraphrasing can become clumsy, further highlighting its artificial nature.
  • Potential for Detection Algorithms to Adapt: As AI detection tools continue to evolve, they become better at identifying content that has been paraphrased by algorithms like QuillBot.


In my experience, even after using Quillbot to paraphrase AI-generated text, Turnitin effectively identifies it as AI-produced content; all my tests showed detection rates of 64% or higher. While I appreciate Turnitin's reliable detection capabilities, I find the interface could be more streamlined for quicker, more intuitive use.

True Or False?

ChatGPT generated content can be detected by Google and Teachers?