Turnitin Troubleshooting

There are a few common issues that you may experience when you submit your assessment to a Turnitin submission point. This guide will help you resolve the issues, or direct you to the best place to go for help.

What to do if you can’t submit

First, read the error message carefully, these will usually tell you what the issue is so you can resolve it.

Word count error

If you see the following error message that says that your submission needs at least 20 words, you’ll need to edit your submission to meet this word count. This message often appears when you are submitting a file that has scanned pages. Even if these appear to have text on them, scans are read by Turnitin as images, and therefore they are considered to have no text. You can create a coversheet in Word that meets the word count and attach it to your file in order to be able to upload your file.

If you’re still having issues, contact Help4U.

Screenshot of an error message when trying to submit a file to Turnitin. It says 'Oops...There was an error during the upload. Your submission must contain 20 words or more. Your file has not been submitted'.

Cannot upload submission

If you are unable to upload a submission and see the message Cannot upload submission. There is something in the settings that is barring your from submitting – most likely, the due date has passed and the assignment has been set up to not allow late submissions. If you see this message, you will need to contact your instructor for any further help.

Screenshot of the Turnitin Submission point from a student page, the page says in large text 'Cannot upload submission'.

File size error

If you see the following error about your file being too large, you will need to compress your file. You can see our guide on how to optimise your file for tips on how to decrease file size.

For any further issues, please contact Help4U.

Screenshot of the Turnitin submission file upload window. It has an error message that says 'Your selected file is too big (126.91 MiB). The maximum file size is 100 MiB.'

What to do if you have submitted the wrong file

First, see if your assignment allows resubmissions – you don’t need to delete anything, the new submission will automatically replace the earlier submission. If the assignment doesn’t allow resubmissions, you’ll need to contact your instructor for any further help.

You cannot delete submissions, so if you have uploaded a file to the wrong submission point and need help removing it you will need to contact your instructor for further help.

What to do if something else has gone wrong

If anything else is going wrong with your submission, please contact Help4U. We also strongly recommend that you also contact your instructor so they are aware of any issues you may be having. 

Updated on 30/08/2021

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