What is The Best Plagiarism Checker? 11 Top Options (2022)

In this article, we explain what's the best plagiarism checker available today based on our reviews and extensive testing.

Nothing can damage a writer's reputation or student record more than an accusation of plagiarism. While most issues are unintentional, improper citations and quotes are sometimes considered plagiarism.

Even the hint of an accusation can impact your grades or your livelihood, so it's essential to turn in copies, articles, and assignments plagiarism-free. Bloggers, writers, essayists, and students should routinely use an online plagiarism checker or detection tool before submitting or publishing their work online.

A good plagiarism check forms part of every writer or editor's workflow. If you're worried about plagiarism, unintentional or otherwise, fear not. This article covers the best free and paid tools. We also explore how accurate plagiarism detection tools are and what you can expect. And we offer useful tips for getting more value from them.

Best Plagiarism Checker For 2022

ProductEase of UseAccuracyInsightsFree Trial Get Discount



Grammarly
Browser, web and desktop appsBest in class online plagiarism checkerAI-powered writing assistantYesGET 25% OFF
Prowritingaid logo


ProWritingAid
Desktop appOver 20 powerful writing reportsInstructional videos and guidesYesGET 25% OFF

The Best Plagiarism Checkers

These tools use various algorithms and AI technology to scan online databases of content for previously published works. In some cases, they provide detailed reports. In other cases, they provide links for a writer to review. A few free tools and paid tools are geared towards general writers while others are more suited towards academics and essayists.

1. Grammarly

Pricing: Free, with a premium version available

Use for: Checking your articles or articles by other writers

Grammarly graphical user interface
Grammarly is a plagiarism checker that identifies instances of duplication in my work and across this site

The Grammarly plagiarism checker is part of its premium plan. You can access Grammarly for free and check your paper, Docx Word file, or web page for grammar errors, but you'll need to upgrade to check for plagiarism.

I copied and pasted some writing from a txt file into Grammarly. It picked up intentional plagiarism and an improperly cited quote using deep search across the web. I also use this checker regularly to vet articles submitted by freelance writers and also to find links for missing citations.

I like Grammarly as a plagiarism checker as it identifies instances of duplication in my work and across this site. These types of insights help with self-editing and ensure I publish original work, which is good for ranking higher in SERP (a search engine results page).

Grammarly is available on iOS and Android, mobile and desktop. It's an ideal solution for professional writers, and students worried about potential plagiarism. That said, it doesn't take into account print books, like academic plagiarism software.

If you want to learn more, try the free online version first or read my comprehensive Grammarly review.

Tip: If you're in school or university, avail of a Grammarly student discount.

Pros
  • Fast and accurate
  • Proofreads your document and checks for a wide range of issues
  • Gives a link to potentially plagiarised text
  • You also get a best-in-class grammar checker
Cons
  • Reporting is not as robust as other tools.
  • Not suitable for longer documents i.e. over several thousand words
  • Pricey for students
Best Grammar Checker
Grammarly
$30

Grammarly is a top spelling, grammar and plagiarism checker. It'll help you find and fix errors fast, and it works everywhere. It's trusted by millions of writers for a reason.

Become a Writer Today is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

2. ProWritingAid

Pricing: Free version available, $70 per year,

Use for: fiction, books, as a Grammarly alternative

ProWritingAid graphical user interface
A ProWritingAid plagiarism checker report

This versatile tool offers is a good choice for writers who want to check their work for plagiarism quickly and easily, but are on a tight budget. You can use this copyright checker to scan your writing while working in popular applications like Scrivener. Or you can simply upload an article, essay or document.

That said, you need to buy credits to run a plagiarism report on a piece of writing. While writing my last book, I used the plagiarism checker to scan book chapters for missing quote citations. I was impressed with the accuracy of the reports. That said, it doesn't consider print publications. It's also less suitable for content publishers.

The free trial version of ProWritingAid is relatively limited. To try the plagiarism checker, you'll need to pay $70 for the year and purchase credits to run a report. It's still cheaper than Grammarly and just as accurate.

Read our ProWritingAid Review.

Pros
  • Accurate reports
  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Comprehensive list of potential writing issues to fix beyond plagiarism
Cons
  • A beginner could find the sheer number of choices overwhelming
  • Less suitable for academics
Best Grammarly Alternative
ProWritingAid
$79

ProWritingAid is a powerful, accurate grammar checker and style editor. It's suitable for non-fiction and fiction writers and doesn't require a monthly subscription.

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

3. Copyscape

Price: $4.95 per month or 3 cents per search

Use for: checking online work and protecting your website

Copyscape
Copyscape plagiarism detection in action

Copyscape is a popular type of plagiarism detection service founded by Gideon Greenspan in 2003. You can enter an article's URL into Copyscape and check if it matches published web pages for plagiarism. Essayists can also paste their work into Copyscape to check for accidental plagiarism.

I used Copyscape as a type of plagiarism detection software for this site. I connected it to my sitemap, I was disturbed to find another website had ripped off one of my online reviews. I immediately contacted them and asked them to take down the article. After receiving no response, I also initiated a DMCA takedown request.

If you publish content on a website regularly, Copyscape is a useful tool for maintaining the health of your site. You can connect it via an API tool and also configure notifications for existing content. That sets it apart from Grammarly as it's a type of proactive plagiarism software rather than reactive (i.e. it can alert you).

These days, I use Copyscape in conjunction with Grammarly and ProWritingAid the most.

Read our Copyscape review

Pros
  • Excels for content-based websites
  • Unearths plagiarism quickly and easily
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Less useful for self-editing
  • Reports require some analysis
  • Not possible to save reports

4. Writer.Com

Pricing: Free version available
Use for: working with a team

Writer.com
Writer.com is a good choice for those who work with other team members

Writer.com is a newer plagiarism detector that I'm impressed with. It's built with businesses in mind with additional security and compliance measures compared to typical writing software.

It also supports the AP style guide. Writer.com is a good choice for those who work with other team members, thanks to advanced collaboration features.

It will check your work for instances of plagiarism, inadvertent or otherwise. If Writer.com finds content used elsewhere, it will highlight the text and also provide a URL for you to check. It's also cheaper than Grammarly at $11.99 per month.

You can try out the plagiarism checker for free too.

Read our Writer.com review

Pros
  • Cheaper than Grammarly
  • Accurate
Cons
  • Newer to the market and less well-known than Grammarly
  • Unsuitable if you're not running a business or write fiction

5. Turnitin

Pricing: You can't buy access or an account but you can access it for free if your teacher is using it
Use for: checking essays

Plagiarism checker: Turnitin
This app provides a comprehensive and proprietary scoring system for each piece it scans

When you ask which plagiarism checker or detection tool universities use, they point to this one.

While there is no way to check this from the student-facing side (without submitting a document to a teacher) here's what you should know about using Turnitin for academic integrity. 

Turnitin is a software solution for schools, sold by a business, to a business, so you can't check your own individual work. According to Turnitin's sales materials, every document that is submitted to a teacher through the portal is scanned and checked.

Turnitin stresses that it offers more than plagiarism detection. It provides a comprehensive and proprietary scoring system for each piece it scans. The brand provides a “similarity index,” a percentage score, and a report that gives teachers more insight into the piece. 

Tip: If your teacher is using Turnitin, you should run your paper through another plagiarism detection software before submitting it. This is a good practice before you submit any paper, but absolutely essential if your teacher is using Turnitin. 

Pros
  • Accurate and sophisticated reports
  • Geared towards academics and essayists
  • Scans books and digital print works
Cons
  • You can't run your paper through on your own before submitting it
  • Not widely available outside of academia

6. Plagiarism Check

Pricing: It costs between 15 and 30 cents per page, depending on your plan
Use For: Students who check their work for duplicate content while creating citations

Plagiarism Check
The citation creator can also help avoid accidental plagiarism

Plagiarism Check is an accurate type of plagiarism software that uses algorithms to spot unoriginal work even after it’s spun. 

Signing up for an account is easy, and Plagiarism Check gives you one free scan so you can get a feel for the platform.

After you’ve signed up, you’ll notice the dashboard is simple, and you don’t have to go through a learning curve. There’s a menu that also offers a citation generator on the left. This feature makes Plagiarism Check a practical option for students because you can scan for plagiarism and create citations within seconds.

The citation creator can also help avoid accidental plagiarism. This way, when you hand in your assignment to your school or college, you can be sure there’s no copied content.

Pros
  • It’s a citation generator and plagiarism checker in one
  • Plagiarism Check is affordable
  • It spots spun content
  • Easy to use
Cons
  • No mobile app
  • No tools like a bulk checker for website publishers

7. Paper Rater

Pricing: Free
Use for: checking essays, if you can't access TurnItIn

Best Free Plagiarism Checker: Paper Rater
You can indicate your grade level, what type of paper it is, and other factors before checking

This free online plagiarism checker asks questions about your paper before it is checked. You can indicate your grade level, what type of paper it is, and other factors before checking.

You can paste the text into Paper Rater and check a few hundred words. However, pushing the “premium” button will automatically transfer you to Ginger. That's a grammar checker that lags behind Grammarly 

Pros
  • No account required to use
  • Will catch some issues
  • Detailed stats
Cons
  • It's basically Ginger
  • No mobile apps

8. Unicheck

Pricing: Varied, I was quoted $15 to check the submitted passage and 99 others
Use for: checking articles on a budget

Best Free Plagiarism Checker: Unicheck
Unicheck requires you to pay before your paper is checked

Unicheck is a plagiarism detection software that offers plenty of features but requires more details to start checking original content. While the other checkers here allow you to drop in a passage and go, this one requires a login and some additional details. You can check 200 words for free (probably not enough for any student!)

I pasted in some extracts from articles on this site. A Unicheck report presented me with some links to check. However, I found Copyscape's reports more useful for this type of analysis.

Pros
  • Geared toward students
  • Works nicely with Google Docs
Cons
  • Promoted as a free service, Unicheck requires you to pay before your paper is checked, but it doesn't tell you this until you enter your email, personal details, and your paper.
  • Not as robust as other tools in this roundup

9. PlagScan

Pricing: You get 20 credits free – after that, 100 credits will cost you $12.00
Use for: checking your essays

Best Free Plagiarism Checker: PlagScan
You must sign up to use this tool, but the signup is fast and easy

PlagScan is a relatively robust plagiarism checker, in existence for over ten years. You can sign up with a Google account or your email and access the web browser for free. It works on a credit system basis, but you can still check up to 2,000 words without paying.

Signup is fast, easy, and does not require a credit card for the trial period. Once my email was verified, I received immediate free credits — enough to check the passage and some future papers as well.

You can upload word documents, input text directly or add a URL. I tried pasting a URL into the tool and encountered connection errors. Instead, I coped the bulk of my article into the tool.

It took about one minute to scan my document. Then, it presented me with a report and links to potentially plagiarised content. I was unaware of one of these links. It revealed someone had copied original content from this site and put it into a PDF online.

If you want an accurate free plagiarism checker for a once-off project, this could be a good choice as 2,000 words covers the length of a typical essay. Then, you can update to a premium plan starting at $5.99 per month, depending on the level of analysis you want.

Pros
  • Accurate
  • Relatively affordable
  • Supports multiple formats including blog posts, articles and essays
Cons
  • No mobile app
  • Reports require some interpretation

10. DMCA Scan

Price: Free for two scans
Use for: raising DMCA takedown requests

A DMCA report
A DMCA report

After finding an instance of plagiarism or duplicate content, you can issue a DMCA takedown request via Google. Alternatively, you can use a site that scans the web for duplicate content issues. I pasted the website address for this site into DMCA scan. It's

It found three examples of duplicate content on other sites. One of these was an Amazon book description. It missed some other examples I was aware of. This information may be useful prior to submit a DMCA takedown request but I wouldn't solely rely on this tool as a content publisher.

The company behind it also claims to help with DMCA takedown requests for $199 but considering these are free to raise with Google and other search engines, I'm unsure of the benefits of paying for this service.

Pros
  • Free
  • Quick
  • Geared towrds DMCA takedowns
Cons
  • Missed some instances of plagiarism
  • Relatively uninsightful reports

11. Plagiarism Checker X

Price. Free/$39.95
Use for: Checking essays and articles in bulk, non-English checks

Plagiarism Checker X Vs Grammarly
The Plagiarism Checker X report

Plagiarism Checker X is a well-known tool founded by Rashid Ali in 2012. It's popular with students and academics. It claims customers including Trinity College, Ohio University and JM Field Marketing. You can paste content or essays directly into the tool or paste a URL for an article.

It will score an article a percentage and provide a relatively accurate report that's comparable to Grammarly, based on a database of the published content. Unlike Grammarly, you don't have to pay a monthly subscription. It costs $39.95 once you decide to upgrade from the free version.

I particularly liked that it supports more than English. I was also impressed by the bulk comparison tool which enables checking multiple articles or essayists at once. This is ideal for people who write and publish a lot of content.

Read our Plagiarism Checker X vs Grammarly comparison.

What Is a Plagiarism Checker?

A plagiarism checker tool scans a document or a portion of a document for duplicate or plagiarized content.

The checker scans the internet for other uses of the same phrases, terms, or quotes. In some cases, a sensitive plagiarism checker can also detect similarities in wording and paraphrasing.

Plagiarism checkers look for direct quotes and similar wording between your document and other pieces of content online. You can also use this type of software to check if your work was plagiarized elsewhere as it will show links to where similar content appears online.

Quotes cited correctly are not plagiarism, but will still be detected by plagiarism detectors, as will similar sentences, paragraphs, phrases, and titles.

Common word pairings and uses are not considered plagiarism — a detector that is so sensitive it picks up common word combinations would not be very useful.

A plagiarism checker or tool compares your document with others and highlights the similarities. This allows you to ensure your quotes are cited properly and that you have not been inadvertently influenced too much by one source.

If you get a positive result from a plagiarism checker, go back and correct the problematic part. If you submit an important document without checking, you could end up in trouble and with a failing grade, so taking this extra step is a critical part of the writing process.

Plagiarism detectors are available online from a variety of brands and are built using customer algorithms. In this article, we explain more about how plagiarism detectors work. Now, let's cover the one question many writers ask themselves at some point during their careers:

Did I Plagiarize?

If you've written anything more than a few hundred words, it's easy to lose track of your sources and research. What's more, an improperly cited piece of work can give the appearance of plagiarism, unintentional or otherwise.

If you're asking yourself this question, take the piece of writing in question and scan using your plagiarism software of choice. It should identify duplicate content across the web. Then you can add links, citations, or rewrite as needed.

In short: there are several different types of plagiarism to watch for, including accidental, deliberate, and excessive paraphrasing.

Why Use a Plagiarism Checker?

Plagiarism checkers can check your document and compare it to others found online. They are an effective way of ensuring you’ve created an original piece and cited sources or quotes correctly.

Consider a plagiarism checker an essential part of writing — like spellcheck software — that ensures your document or paper is polished.

Plagiarism checkers can be used to cross-check text for duplicated content (this may include quoted material, paraphrased material, similarities in wording, etc.). This essential writing tool helps ensure that the text is original and correctly cited.

I also sometimes use a plagiarism checker to determine if popular articles on this site have been plagiarized. I once found an entire article copy verbatim with my bio and all to a different domain.

These paid and free tools can help polish your work. In a university setting, a plagiarism detector can help you prepare an academic paper or essay for an important submission.

In short: don't get plagiarised!

If you need help, read our guide. 5 Ways to Avoid Accidental Plagiarism

5 Benefits of Using Plagiarism Detection Software

1. Superior Results

If you need to know when a local shop is open, Google is ideal. If you want to check your document for plagiarism, though, Google can be hit or miss.

This is problematic because Google could tell you that your own paper is fine (when there are incorrectly cited quotes or other issues). You could submit a flawed paper that doesn’t get the right grade or triggers an academic review.

If Google gets it wrong, you could end up making unnecessary changes that weaken the document or content. This also adds time to the process and could impact your grade. Using a tool like Turnitin from the start eliminates these risks.

2. Clarity

Even if a search engine like Google can find a phrase or piece from your document online, it is not always clear where that piece is. Google may return a page for results but not give you the details you need as part of a useful plagiarism check. It's also unlikely to act as a duplicate content checker for online publishers.

3. High-Quality, Detailed Matches

When you use a free plagiarism checker on content, you get a detailed report of the matches found along with a percentage of the document that is considered to be duplicate content.

This is useful because even a document that has quotes that are properly cited could get a lower grade if you have too many of them. If quotes and other properly cited phrases are too large of a percentage of your paper, it could impact your grade. 

4. Peace of Mind

A freelance writer, for example, will probably consult a variety of sources while working on an article. Sometimes, this may unintentionally forget to include a link or citation. This could result in them being accused of unintentional plagiarism.

After using a plagiarism tool, you can submit knowing it is free of duplicate content or cited properly. This step can eliminate risk, improve your work, protect your reputation and avoid the consequences of plagiarism.

5. Better Writing

If you're creating content for a client or publication, running your finished piece through a plagiarism checker can help you spot quotes needing citations.

Running a quote through a checker can help you find and authenticate the source, too. 

One of the worst things you can do as a writer is turn in copy with plagiarised content, even accidentally. An editor who finds copied content will likely reject the piece and refuse to work with you again.

How We Tested These Plagiarism Tools

Below is a detailed look at each of these options. I tested each checker tool with a piece of copied text, some paraphrasing, and an improperly cited quote to see what they picked up. I also copied and pasted article samples from this site. In a few cases, I considered use cases for the software based on my existing writing workflow. For example, I've used ProWritingAid and Grammarly for years.

How we tested these plagiarism tools
I typically take an article of several hundred or thousand words in length with obvious mistakes

I update this roundup regularly to bear in mind new features for each of the plagiarism checkers listed. I typically take an article of several hundred or thousand words in length with obvious mistakes. I also sometimes use book chapters and submissions by freelancers to this site.

I then compare each tool to see which ones spot and suggest fixes. I also bear in mind the ideal audience for each tool, the cost, and ease of use.

Why You Can Trust Us

I’ve written and published dozens of articles for newspapers, magazines, and online publications including, Forbes and Lifehacker. I'm also a best-selling non-fiction author, a trained journalist, and a copywriter.

I depend on plagiarism software for two reasons. Firstly, I use it to check the work of freelance writers who submit articles to this site and others. Secondly, I use it to check my work for inadvertent instances of plagiarism and missing citation

Which Plagiarism Checker Is Best? the Final Word 

By deliberately inserting plagiarised and paraphrased passages, there was an advantage of knowing what the detector “should” uncover.

Of the plagiarism detection tools above, all but Paper Rater picked up on the plagiarised passages and gave accurate results. Two, including PlagScan and ProWritingAid, also identified the paraphrased sections, making these slightly more sensitive and useful. 

Grammarly and ProWritingAid also offered additional perks, including proofreading and insights into grammar, alongside a plagiarism report. They can also help with SEO if you're worried about duplicate content.

If you write fiction, consider using ProWritingAid as a useful plagiarism detection tool. It offers a combo of comprehensive detection and editing tools — and doesn't mind paying for the service. The free version of PlagScan was a favorite, as well, and picked up everything I expected it to. 

If you're running a business or working with a team, I'd also recommend checking out Writer.com thanks to its style guide and custom dictionaries. Finally, content publishers should use Copyscape to protect content on their websites. It's cheap and insightful.

Add one or more of these plagiarism detectors to your writer's toolbox and you'll never have to worry about the work you're submitting again. 

FAQs on The Best Plagiarism Checkers

What website can I use to check for plagiarism?

I recommend using Grammarly as it works from anywhere and is relatively easy to use with most types of writing and content. You can copy and paste text into this tool and check it almost instantly.

Is Grammarly plagiarism checker reliable?

Yes, it can find instances of plagiarism in your work using this tool. As an example try pasting an extract from this article into Grammarly and watch it pull through the URL

How does a plagiarism checker work?

Most modern plagiarism checkers work by using a custom algorithm to scan the web for similar content compared to the writing under examination. They will typically present a report with links to duplicate content so you can check your sources or follow up on the copyright violation.

Which Plagiarism Checker Do Teachers Use?

Teachers use a wide range of tools to check for plagiarism, including the free checkers listed below. Since they have the same access to tools you do, running your document through a free plagiarism checker before submitting ensures you know what kind of results they will get.

Some teachers still rely on Google as a tool, but more savvy instructors will use a solution like Turnitin, so you should do the same if you have access. If not, this guide features some alternatives.

Which Online Plagiarism Check Is Available For Students?

You have several options if you want to check plagiarism in your document:
Turnitin: This plagiarism checker is used by many courses and programs and is available through Brightspace. This detector is often in official use for a course and used to check submissions automatically against a variety of sources.
Grammarly: You may know Grammarly for its writing improvement and proofreading tools, but it also has a robust and useful plagiarism detector.
WriteCheck: This is another version of Turnitin, available for students.
Google: While it is not terribly effective, some teachers use a search engine to detect plagiarism. This works if you copy and paste direct quotes but it's sensitive enough to identify paraphrasing.

Join over 15,000 writers today

Get a FREE book of writing prompts and learn how to make more money from your writing.

Powered by ConvertKit

Author

Scroll to Top