Information about Certification Tests

Over 143,000 people worldwide passed one of the new Certification Tests in 2016.

Each randomly selected question on a test provides source material from another author and a sample of student writing. The test taker must determine whether the student version is word-for-word plagiarism, paraphrasing plagiarism, or not plagiarism. If you pass, your Certificate will be e-mailed to you, and you can view your Certificate online. Very important, you and your instructor can retrieve and validate it later to ensure it is not counterfeit.

Many test questions exemplify subtle forms of plagiarism, including plagiarism due to omission of elements required for proper citations and references. You may perceive more difficult items as 'trick questions' because the plagiarism is sneaky. These test items nonetheless illustrate ways that writers knowingly plagiarize with hopes of not getting caught, or who are ignorant, lazy, or just careless.

The tests are challenging for most people, requiring concentration and attention to detail. It often takes multiple attempts before passing. The best way to minimize time and frustration is first to do all the tutorials. People who report completion of most or all of the tutorials are 3 to 5 times more likely to pass a Certification Test, when compared with those who do not. Instruction and practice are arranged by levels of difficulty, from basic to complex kinds of plagiarism.

We do not provide correct answers to specific questions you missed on a Certification Test! On purpose.


  • The main reason we do not provide correct answers is that it makes it harder to cheat, as was widely occuring in the past. It's not because we can't provide correct answers, or don't understand the importance of feedback in the learning process. The Certification Tests are designed for valid assessment of learning, not designed as instruments for learning in and of themselves. That's what the tutorials are for, which include practice tests with feedback.

  • Many classroom instructors had brought this widespread cheating phenomen to our attention in 2012 and 2013, who were very concerned about bogus Certificates. They sent us links to answer keys on the Web. That's why there are now billions of possible Certification Tests, and a secure and confidential way to determine the legitimacy of each Certificate.

  • We do not have resources at Indiana University to create new test items every hour of every day (thousands of tests taken every day). And don't forget, we are not charging you for every Certification test you take.

    This issue is similar to when you take a standardized test such as the SAT or GRE. Test makers do not provide correct answers to questions missed for the same reason. It is very expensive to create a large number of reliable, highly discriminating, and valid test questions. And, unlike here, they charge you each time you take a standardized test.

  • If you do not pass a Certification Test, you will receive explicit feedback on specific kinds of mistakes you are making. We do this to assess your ability to recognize plagiarism. Passing a test is not a matter of simply memorizing answers to questions. Taking more Certification Tests will not change the outcome.

    Instead, learn what you need to know through tutorials provided here. Instruction is organized by 5 levels of increasing difficulty (from basic to expert). You can watch one-minute videos of plagiarism cases, see dynamic examples, practice recognizing plagiarism with immediate feedback on your answers, read explanations of why your answers are wrong, reflect on your learning, and take practice tests at each level of difficulty--also with feedback on your answers.

To Take a Certification Test, Click a Button Below:

What age group do you belong to?

Both choices require registration before taking an Indiana University Plagiarism Test.

Already passed a test in 2016 or later and have a Certificate? Click here to retrieve your validated Certificate.

Your Certificate for Passing a Test

If you pass a test, your unique Certificate on recognizing plagiarism will be e-mailed to you, but only if you provide a correct e-mail address when registering to take a test.

Your Certificate could be in your junk mail or spam folder, so be sure to check there if you cannot find it in your inbox. You will not receive a Certificate if you supply an incorrect e-mail address. There is nothing we can do about this--that is your responsibility.

Retrieve Your Certificate at a Later Time

Certificates can be re-issued by following directions after you pass a test and by writing down important unique information that is provided.

Click here to retrieve Certificates earned in 2016. Certificates earned before Jan. 1, 2016 can no longer be retrieved.

Technical Problems?

If you are having technical problems in taking a test, you can e-mail us by clicking on the link at the bottom of any of the pages. We cannot respond to every question or comment we receive, but if there is some particular problem experienced by multiple people in the same time frame, we do our best to address the issue as we can with our limited resources.

See history of recent issues and changes in the plagiarism tests.


Next: Retrieve and Validate Certificates