Powerup Originality Reports with School Matches

Students regularly incorporate external inspiration into their writing and avoid plagiarism by attributing credit to the appropriate source. Originality reports, included with the Teaching and Learning Upgrade and Education Plus editions, empower students to do their best work by fostering academic integrity. To further develop authenticity, Google Workspace for Education has added the school matches feature to this Google Classroom resource. 

Enabling student matches

School matches give originality reports the ability to compare assignments against previous student submissions within a Google Workspace domain. In addition to assessing student work against billions of web pages and books, it can also scan your Google Drive data for potential misconduct. 

To enable student matches, begin by ensuring the Teacher Permissions are set to verified teachers only by navigating to  Apps > Google Workspace > Classroom > General Settings > Teacher Permissions > Who Can Create Classes

Note: Selecting verified teachers only ensures that school matches will only be enabled at the Teacher OU level. This will create a private repository that is owned by the domain, and non-delegated users will not have access to the shared drive that will need to be created. 

Next, while staying in Apps > Workspace > Classroom, go to the Originality Reports section. At the root level, apply the Enable originality reports school matches setting by checking the box.

After this setting is applied, a shared drive needs to be created to house the repository of work to compare against. To create the shared drive and begin building the repository, create an assignment with originality reports enabled in any Google Classroom class. Once work is submitted to the assignment, run originality reports, which will create the institution-owned repository in a private, hidden shared drive to store information from student submissions from this point forward.

To have originality reports compared against student work submitted prior to applying these settings, admins who have been delegated as managers of the repository can request that staff designate them as viewers to any Classroom folders with files they wish to add. Once the admin has viewer access to those folders, they can copy them into the new shared drive repository to be used for comparison.

Managing shared drives

Since the best practice is to maintain control in your domain over who can create shared drives, enabling school matches is an opportunity to ensure permissions are limited to assigned admins by setting up the shared drive using the preferred method of creating a configuration group.

Launch a new tab in your browser and click on this link. This will open the Classroom school matches admin page. There are two sections to this page: Service Accounts and Shared Drives. Under the Service Accounts section, copy the email address which is listed. Next, switch back to the tab with the Admin console open and go to Groups. Once in Groups, create a configuration group with the email listed for this service account just copied from the previous tab as the owner of the group. This will prevent having to enable all domain users to create shared drives and avoid shared drive sprawl.

Now that the configuration group is created, navigate to Apps > Google Workspace > Drive and Docs > Sharing settings > Shared drive creation. On the left side of the screen, select the newly created group and make sure that the setting Prevent users in <your domain> from creating new shared drives is deselected.  

Note: If not using the configuration group method, this setting would be deselected at the root but that would allow anyone in the domain to create shared drives and could lead to shared drive sprawl.  

To finish the setup process, deselect Prevent non-members of the shared drive from accessing files as well for this group. This will allow teachers to see matches across the institution’s domain, not just for their classes. Click Save.  

Originality reports add so much value to a student’s EdTech experience and the school matches feature supports their growth as learners. As a final thought, institutions should also weigh their retention policies in Vault. If the retention policy on student Google Drive files is anything other than indefinitely, consider how long those records should be retained so that they will be available for school matches when Originality Reports are run in Google Classroom.

If your institution currently has the Teaching and Learning Upgrade or Education Plus edition, make sure your Google Admin console is configured to support the school matches feature before you enable it.  

If you are interested in upgrading your Google Workspace for Education edition, contact your regional account manager.  

  • tammy-headshot

    Tammy Groff
    Google for Education Training Consultant

  • About the Author:

    Tammy started at Amplified IT in 2019 after working as Director of IT at a small private school where she executed the replacement of the entire network and wireless infrastructure of the school, security cameras, and managed the schools’ migration to 1:1 Chromebooks. As one of Amplified IT’s Google for Education Training Consultants, she greatly enjoys training Google Workspace admins and collaborating with schools to ensure they are following EDU security best practices in their Google Workspace environment.