Unplag and Writecheck are both online plagiarism checkers suitable for personal use. They are created to fit in the needs of the educational field. So, they should be just what students have ever dreamt of. But whenever users are on the point of choosing some tools for daily use, they may rely only on the information provided either on Youtube or elsewhere on the Q&A websites
It doesn’t mean that they don’t provide relevant information. It does mean that it takes time to collect all major pros and cons and only then take a decision. Plagiarism accusations lead to fatal outcomes like expulsion or degree withdrawal. So, you need to be on the safe side and carefully select a checker.
Unplag Vs WriteCheck
This post is based on a real user experience and outlines the key benefits and disadvantages for Unplag and Writecheck. So, let’s get the ball rolling.
User interface navigation
This what every user notices first and what makes the first impression. You don’t need to spend time searching for the button to launch a check or browse a web page with a matching source. What you obviously need is simplicity and what UI designers call it – an intuitive interface where everything is clear even without tooltips.
Unplag and Writecheck both seem to be simple and have much in common. Though when you take a closer look at the dashboard inside each checker account, you see the difference.
the dashboard at Unplag
One of the things that makes Unplag more easy-to-handle is a shortcut bar. You can access files or folders in a quicker way – add, search, move, or delete them. Unplag indicates percentage of matches found for each checked document and specifies the number of checks run (saving the history of all previous checks). You can also drag & drop folders and files into the dashboard, upload your papers from Google Drive and Dropbox or check several files at once. It speeds up your work. Besides, you can share reports with your instructors without downloading them.
the dashboard at Writecheck
Writecheck’s dashboard shows titles of checked files, their status, and submission dates. It allows creating files and folders and arrange them the way you like. However, to quickly navigate the dashboard takes time: You won’t find the button allowing to quickly add a new document or delete a folder. If you do not check papers daily, you may simply forget which one needs editing. There’s no search option available and similarity percentage shown next to each scanned file. You will have to open each document to view the similarity percentage. It isn’t effective.
Software check quality
You will never know that self-plagiarism can be an issue, till your professor refuses to accept your assignment because of this reason. That’s why the check option to scan through all the works you wrote and uploaded to Unplag previously is of big value.
Writecheck doesn’t give you such an opportunity. It claims to check works through the same database as Turnitin (online sources, academic journals, articles, etc.). However its check quality doesn’t show relevant percentage of matches. When excluding Bibliography from search results, Writecheck may skip some matching sources (like Wikipedia) by mistake.
With Unplag, you can also compare your uploads with real-time web sources. Educators always insist on consulting the most relevant and up-to-date sources. Thus, if you fail to give reference to some recently published research or article, Unplag will be able to spot the match.
As said on the Writecheck FAQ page, it “only shows potential unintended plagiarism without matching sources”. This is not convenient. You may fail to note down all the sources you used to create a paper or assignment, and the report will only highlight the text areas that might be copy-pasted. Writecheck lets you exclude bibliography and quotes, but it can lead to twisting comparison results.
Unplag also delivers reports right after files are scanned. Unlike Writecheck, it generates a list with sources. You can click each source link and get to the original website page. It is helpful, since you can timely check whether you have cited all the sources or not. In case if not, you may get all the source details to be included into your reference list. Unplag also allows skipping citations and references. This way you obtain more relevant similarity percentage. Not to spend time reviewing matching sources with minor percentage of similarity, you can exclude them using the system settings. Alternatively, you can skip them manually too.
Average speed of checking
When you launch a check at Writecheck, its system notification says that the turnaround may take from 5 to 10 minutes. Still, there are some exceptions. The check can be run in a minute or in more than 10 minutes should you scan a bigger file. What is more, you won’t be notified when the check is completed. Neither will you understand how much time is still necessary for obtaining the report (the system doesn’t have a progress bar).
Unplag’s average speed of one check is about four seconds per page. Well, in contrast to Writecheck, it seems to be lightning-fast. Still, Unplag says that the bigger the file size, the more time it will need to process all the pages it has. But anyway it will take less than 10 minutes. Unplag shows a circle progress bar to let you know when the scanning process is going to be finished.
Price tags set
Writecheck sets $7.95 for one paper check (5,000 words with three free resubmissions of the paper), $19.95 for three papers and $29.95 for five papers. It is rather costly for the check quality provided by the tool.
Unplag pricing looks more reasonable. Presently, it suggests using one-month plan for $9.97, three-month plan for $20.95 ($6.98 per month), and an annual plan for $59.88 ($4.99 per month).