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Plagiarism detection

Aarhus University has 2 plagiarism detection systems, iThenticate and Urkund.  

Urkund is primarily used in conjunction with the digital exam systems Wiseflow and Digital Exam. Urkund is integrated into these systems, thus all material submitted to Wiseflow and Digital Exam is checked by Urkund.

Urkund is a system for detecting plagiarism in student assignments at AU. AU Library fulfills the role of the University’s primary support for Urkund users. AU Library has solid experience using the system. They provide support for system use, and are also a key player in relation to the prevention of plagiarism at Aarhus University

iThenticate is used by Health and Science & Technology to detect plagiarism in PhD theses.  

Access to Urkund and iThenticate cannot be granted as a means of checking one’s own material, as the system’s structure is not designed in a way that makes it suitable for such a purpose. Such use would also place an undue focus on the system and what it can and cannot do, rather than on it’s core purpose which is to manage and promote good practice in citing, paraphrasing, etc.   

What is Urkund?

Urkund is a plagiarism detection tool, accessible to all lecturers at Aarhus University.  

Urkund can detect overlaps between texts and thus help to spot cheating in written assignments. Urkund searches in 3 different sources: the Internet, material from publishers and previously screened tasks from institutions with a license to the system.  

Please note that Urkund does not work in conjunction with all the publishers that AU Library provides access to. See a list on Urkund's own website. The list is not exhaustive. Please contact your faculty representative if you have any questions about specific publishers, or if you have suggestions for journals that you would like to see included in Urkund's comparison base. We will then contact Urkund in order to discover what possibilities are available to meet your needs.

How do I use Urkund?

  1. Urkund is mostly employed in relation to the digital exam systems, where tasks are screened automatically. Urkund is integrated into Wiseflow and Digital Exam. 

  1. Urkund can also be used on an ad hoc basis. As a member of staff at AU you can get a personal Urkund account (subject to agreement with your faculty). Then you will be able to check assignments on an ongoing basis, when it suits you. Urkund can be used via your mail program, by attaching tasks to an e-mail that you send to your own Urkund email address. You can obtain an Urkund account by contacting your local faculty representative at AU Library

  1. A third possibility is via Urkund’s integration with Blackboard (at present, only BSS’ version of BlackBoard). This requires you to actively create a so-called "Urkund assignment" for the individual courses. When this is done each task that students submit is checked automatically. This requires a personal account, which you can obtain by contacting your local faculty representative.  

See a not entirely new, but still instructive, video from Aarhus BSS (it should be noted that the colour coding does not indicate the degree of plagiarism, but only an identified overlap. It is up to the subject specialists to assess whether there is any question of plagiarism).

How do I get access Urkund?

Contact, or your local faculty representative, in order to gain access to Urkund. Lecturers and staff can obtain access in connection with the marking of student assignments. To create an account you should indicate: name, position, e-mail and department. 

If you have any questions about Urkund, you are also welcome to contact 

Manuals and guides to Urkund

On Urkund’s own support pages you will find manuals and guides

The following can be particularly useful: 

Before you send your first assignment, you can see an example here of an Urkund analysis, so that you have an idea of how an analysis looks. 

See more about how to select and deselect sources in Urkund analyses. Urkund Master Class duplicates (pdf)




If I suspect plagiarism

If you suspect plagiarism in an assignment, it is important that you do not consider the Urkund analysis to be concrete proof the student has committed plagiarism.  

Urkund highlights only duplicate text areas between documents, and duplicate text does not necessarily equal plagiarism. Duplicate text may, for example, be a quote that has been viably inserted into a task and where a clear source has been documented. An Urkund analysis must be read in its context in order to determine whether any plagiarism has occurred.  

The Urkund analysis must be studied with a view to determining whether it is just a matter of careless citation practice or plagiarism. If you need help finding out how to read an Urkund analysis, AU Library Urkund Support are there to assist you. 

If, after having studied an Urkund analysis thoroughly, you have decided to proceed with a case, you must report and document the case to Educational Law. Educational Law will handle the subsequent processing of the case, based on your documentation.  

More about plagiarism - for students and lecturers

It is important that students are made aware of the rules on documenting sources and managing references, in order to avoid plagiarism. AU Library has a made number of resources available, which you can share with your students. 

As a lecturer, and researcher, we have the following information pages for you: 

Your faculty representative

Urkund - Central support

Solveig Sandal Johnsen

Librarian AU Library, Bartholins Allé
H 1342, 275
P +4591356476


Mathias Johannes Michelsen

Information Specialist AU Library, Emdrup
H B, 242b
P +4591356417

Jesper Frederiksen Ølsgaard

Librarian AU Library, Nobel Park
H 1463, 317
P +4591356437

Aarhus BSS

Lisbeth Petersen

Administrator AU Library, Fuglesangs Allé
H 2624, E3
P +4591356468

Helle Vinbæk Stenholt

Administrator AU Library, Bartholins Allé
H 1340, 150
P +4591356463


Marina Therese Axelsen

Librarian AU Library, Health Sciences
H 1265
P +4589462258

Janne Lytoft Simonsen

Research Librarian AU Library, Health Sciences
H 1265
P +4589462366
P +4521387814

Science & Technology

Morten Hjorth Gad

Librarian AU Library, Ny Munkegade
H 1536, 223
P +4591356492

AU Library is part of the preventive measures against plagiarism. We are always ready to give presentations, and enter into a dialogue on how we help can strengthen students' awareness of academic integrity, good citation practice, reference management and source criticism. Please contact your faculty representative to learn more.

AU Library has also assembled information on the subject for students.

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