Originality reports and privacy

If you use originality reports, Google doesn’t assume ownership of your content. That content belongs to you and your students. 

Originality reports search for what is publicly available on the web. They’re not permanently stored. 

Google Workspace for Education Fundamentals meets these compliance standards:

  • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
  • Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 (COPPA)
  • Student Privacy Pledge introduced by the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF)
  • ISO/IEC 27018:2014 (Data standards)

Accounts FAQ

Do schools have to enroll in Workspace for Education?

Yes. Only teachers using Workspace for Education accounts can turn on originality reports for assignments. 

Can I get student assignments in a Google Drive associated with my personal (@gmail.com) address?

No. You can only get student assignments in a Google Drive associated with your Workspace for Education account.

Why can students turn in work from their personal (@gmail.com) Google Accounts?

We recognize that students sometimes prefer to create files in their personal Google Accounts. For student choice and ease of use, they can submit files from the Google Account where they created them. This flexibility simplifies the student workflow, avoiding account changes and file-ownership issues.

Does it comply with FERPA to allow students to use personal (@gmail.com) Google Accounts to turn in and receive returned assignments?

Yes. The student makes the choice to use a personal Google Account. FERPA applies to assignments while they’re being handled by an educational institution. This law is why we require teachers and administrators to receive, store, and grade assignments in institutionally provided Workspace for Education accounts.

Privacy FAQ

How does Google ensure data privacy?

For information on how Workspace for Education collects, uses, and shares information, go to the Workspace for Education Privacy Notice.

Are student assignment files saved to a global repository?

No. Google doesn’t save assignment files to a global repository.

Institutions with Google Workspace for Education Plus or the Teaching and Learning Upgrade can enable a private, school-owned repository of their student work that can be used for checking student matches in future originality reports. Teachers or the school can copy student submissions to the Originality Corpus on the school’s Google Drive, which contains data owned and controlled by the school. Students' work is copied to the school matches corpus, so that it can be compared to other students' work, when all of the following is true:

  • School matches are enabled for the domain
  • Originality reports are enabled for the assignment
  • The file type is supported

To access the repository:

  1. Go to the school matches admin page.
  2. Click Originality Corpus.

Do originality reports check sources in external domains? If so, can those teachers see my students’ assignments?

No. Google doesn’t store student work to check against external domains. Teachers in other domains can’t see your students’ assignments.

Institutions with Google Workspace for Education Plus or the Teaching and Learning Upgrade can enable a private, school-owned repository of their student work that they can use for future originality reports.

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