How to use the CSV Bulk Edit tool

3.png Audience: Administrators

Admins can make updates to students, teachers, classes, and families in bulk from the School Dashboard. You can also use this tool to add new information and set up school rosters.

For a quick summary of how the CSV Bulk Edit tool can help, take a look at this slide deck!

How do I make updates using the CSV Bulk Edit tool?

1. Log into your Administrator account at

2. Go to the Classes, Teachers, Students, or Families tab, depending on what information you want to edit.

3. Tap the Add or Edit in Bulk button in the upper left corner.

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4. If you only want to add new information, tap Add NEW classes, teachers, students, or families. Note: if you want to roster new classes for the school year, please use the 'Import and Edit Class Rosters' tool.

5. If you want to update existing information, tap EDIT existing classes, teachers, students, or families.

⚠️ NOTE: There are different .csv templates for Classes, Teachers, Students, and Families. Do not try to use the same .csv template for all of them.

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6. Once the .csv file has been downloaded, tap Continue.

7. Open the .csv file you just downloaded. Use your preferred spreadsheet editor to add or update the information for your classes, teachers, students, or families.

8. When updating existing classes, ensure that each class takes up one line only. All teachers and students that you wish to have rostered in that class must be listed within one cell and comma-separated.


9. If copying student names from one spreadsheet to another, they may automatically be pasted onto separate lines. If this happens, you can use the following formulas to automatically place several student names into a single cell separated by commas.

After applying the formula, you can copy and paste this list of students into a new cell by using Paste Special> Values.

  • Excel: =TEXTJOIN(", ",TRUE, A1:A20)
  • Google Sheets: =JOIN(", ",A1:A10)

10. When you are done, export a .csv file with your updates.
⚠️ NOTE: If you are using Excel, make sure to save the .csv file as UTF-8 so that it can be processed (example). 

11. In the modal, tap Select CSV from Computer and select the .csv file you created.
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12. Preview your changes and make sure that everything looks correct. Scroll down to the bottom to confirm all your changes.

13. Tap the Make Updates button to import your .csv file and start your upload.
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14. When the upload is complete, you’ll receive an email titled "Bulk Update Complete". In that email, tap Download Update Summary to download a zip file containing the results, changelog, and original data. Please check these files to make sure that the updates went through as you expected!

⚠️ NOTE: If you want to undo your changes, simply upload the "_original data.csv" file found in your "Bulk Update Complete" email.

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To learn more about the specific ways you can use the CSV Bulk Edit tool, check out our guide here!
Changing student passwords with the CSV Bulk Edit tool
Here's how admin can change student passwords in bulk from the school dashboard:
  1. Navigate to the Students tab.
  2. Tap the Add or Edit Students in Bulk button.
  3. Select Edit Existing Students.
  4. Download your existing student data.
  5. Open your CSV as a spreadsheet.
  6. Add a column with the header Student Password.
  7. Add the new student passwords in this column. ⚠️ NOTE: use the strong password requirements to avoid any errors.
  8. Export your edited file as a .csv.
  9. Upload the .csv in the Bulk Edit Students tool
CSV templates and field explanations for Bulk Edit CSVs
For more information and templates for .csv files to use for bulk updates, refer to the CSV Templates & Field Explanations guide. All purple fields are required. 

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⚠️ NOTE: In order for archived classes/students to show up in current downloaded class data, the 'Show ___ Archived Classes' must be toggled ON.
Troubleshooting the CSV Bulk Edit tool

I’m not seeing my download show up! 

  • You may need to “Allow popups” in your browser in order for downloads to work.

My CSV uploads but there are zero updates!

  • Try using Google Sheets or Numbers to save and upload .csvs if you are experiencing issues with getting your updates to go through.
  • If you are using Excel, make sure to save the file as UTF-8 so that it can be processed (example).

Help! I want to undo all my changes and go back to what I had before!

  • When your upload is complete, you’ll receive an email titled "Bulk Update Complete". In that email, tap "Download Update Summary" to download a zip file containing the results, changelog, and original data. To undo your changes, simply upload the "_original data.csv" file.

How do these CSVs work?

  • This sheet includes links to CSV Bulk Updates Templates as well as CSV Field Explanations
  • Data in your school will be updated to exactly match the data that you upload in your .csv files. 
  • For any information that you don’t want to update, you can remove rows or columns and the data will remain unchanged.

Tips for referencing classes, students, teachers in your CSVs: 

  • Downloads currently display unique Seesaw Identifiers to reference classes and schools, followed by the name of the class/school in parenthesis. The name is optional for uploads.
  • Downloads currently display Student IDs for students and Emails for teachers and families by default, but you should be able to use any unique identifier (email, student ID, ClassLink/Clever ID, Seesaw Identifier) in the upload. (ex. For the list of Students in the Classes .csv, you can use Student IDs to add students to the list.)
  • If a student has Student IDs in multiple schools, downloaded Student IDs may display a prefixed Seesaw Identifier for the school followed by ::: and the student ID for differentiation. When uploading new Student IDs or using Student IDs to reference students in your school, you do not need to include the prefixed Seesaw Identifier for the school.
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