A detailed look at administrator, teacher, student and parent functionality including setup, customization and reporting.


ThinkWave Webinar Tutorial Transcript: 8/13/21

Introduction: 0:05

Hi Welcome to ThinkWave, the all-encompassing cloud-based platform that allows you to manage your student enrollment, class details, a comprehensive Gradebook, create custom reports and so much more.

You can always contact us for questions at support@thinkwave.com

Let’s get started.  First at the ThinkWave homepage on the left-hand side of the page, there’s a link for for “Live Demo”, this is a fully filled out demo that will allow you to try out the features of the ThinkWave platform.  We will start by walking you through the administrator view, then the Teacher view and finally the Student and Parent view.  ThinkWave is cloud-based, so it can be used on a PC, Mac, iPad and the iPhone, it's a responsive layout so changing size of the browser window or the viewing device will adjust the interface so you can use it on any of those devices.  When you login you can tell what view and school year you’re in quickly, from the top left here, it says “Administrator 2022-2023”

The Dashboard: 1:13

When logging in the first thing you will see is the dashboard.  On the dashboard you can see a place for administrators and teachers to add messages.  An administrator can create messages for either all students in the school or just certain students.  Also you can add attachments, you can see here is an eagle jpg.  You can also add multiple attachments files to message or blog posts.  And those messages will be mailed out based on your email preferences.

On the dashboard the administrator can access previous years, also administrator can have multiple roles, an administrator can see Administrator, Teacher, Student or Parent View.  

Students Tab: 1:58

Now Let's go to the students tab.  The Students tab is where all the student information is kept.  You could upload a photo here. And by clicking on the settings icon you can also add any custom field you would like, either for all students here, or specific groups of students.  So you could have a free-form field or you could have a pull-down will choices you have created yourself.  There’s also the ability to upload files, if you need immunization records or any other files you would keep for student records, you can put that here.  Further once the student logs in and chooses the username, appears here.  And the Parent username is here.  Also the administrator can log in and view what the parents or students can see online by clicking “Visit Student Account”.  We will go over more on that later.  You can also adjust grade levels or put the e-mails for the automatic e-mail notification.  You can also see the classes that the student is enrolled in.  And the groups the student is enrolled in.  You can also access all of this areas by hovering over the the Students Tab.

Teacher’s Tab: 3:24

The Teachers tab is next.  This is where you would put all the names of the teachers, you can also put a photograph, or any files associated with that teacher.  Teachers once they login will have a personal  grade book that is pre-populated with all the students in their classes, and as an administrator you visit the teachers grade-book by clicking the “Visit Teacher Gradebook”.  We will go over more on that later.  And again, you can access any of these features by hovering over the Teachers Tab.

Classes Tab: 4:01

The next tab is classes.  Classes are similar to courses, they are interchangeable.  A couple things I would like to bring up, is that you can have multiple final grade scales for your school, and you can assign the grade-scales by class.  So kindergarten classes can have E, S and U  And other higher-level classes can have a different grading scales.  If a teacher switches classes or leaves in the middle of the semester you can re-assign the grade-book to another teacher easily by just selecting another teacher in the dropdown menu.  The class scheduling is flexible so you can have classes meet on different periods during the week.  Another important thing to note is graded skills, so for kindergarten classes or other classes you can you can grade a class on multiple parameters, and those also print out on report cards and transcripts.

Final Grades: 4:56

Under the class tab there are the final grades and comments.  This is the heart of the software in the sense that it collects the grades and comments from multiple teachers and combines them together for one unified report, so you can generate a report card or transcript for each student.

There's three levels of using this software.  First the teacher can keep all the assignments in the grade-book and it calculates the final grade and transfers it to the administrator.  Or the teacher could just enter in the over-ride as a final grade if they don't want to use the grade-book.  Or further the administrator can just put in the final grade as an over-ride and also put the comment in, in the comment block.  The comments are long, they can be up to 5,000 characters for both the over-all grade and also any graded skills.  So you can see under Biology 1 for example, you can have grade here and comment from the teacher, also all the graded skills and comments also go on the transcript.  There’s also the ability to get credits if a student earns partial credits for a course. Those credits appear on the transcript and and are summed together for an over-all number of credits.

Attendance: 6:13

Attendance is a two-tiered system where the teacher takes attendance either for one period or multiple periods.  And that period mark is then transformed into a day mark according to the rules you set in the setup tab.  We'll go over the setup tab later.  So you can set it so if a teacher marks a student absent for first period they are marked absent for the whole day.  An administrator can go in and over-ride that if the student comes in tardy.  Or you can set different rules where if a student is gone for a majority of the periods or the majority of minutes then the day mark is absent or present or whatever you setup in the setup rules.

Reports/Report Card: 6:57

Next go to the Reports Tab.  The Report card is one of the reports I'll show you, you could generate the report card either on your own letterhead by designated length space on the top in inches or you can upload your own logo to appear in the top left of the report.  You can choose single term report card or multi-term to include multiple terms.  Also you can change the layout either portrait or landscape.  Change the report title if you want to generate a progress report.

Since ThinkWave data is uploaded immediately as teachers enter the grades you can make a progress report at any time.  There is also a lot of customization options available for other areas, so you can include things like attendance, or the custom fields I showed you earlier in the students tab.  For example you can print the value of a semester or school-wide test on the report card as well.  Here you can print a legend which appears at the bottom of the report card along with the signature line.  Just select a student, a term then click “Generate”.

Reports/Transcripts: 8:19

Now I'll show a couple more reports.  The transcript report I mentioned earlier contains multiple years of a student's grades.  The student ID connects the data year to year so once you setup the current year you can roll back the grades to enter historical data.  And when you roll the student forward the information is copied so you can generate a full student transcript at any time.  The student transcript also generates as a ready to print PDF with your logo and the school address.  As you can see all the years a student has been enrolled is included.  It includes the cumulative GPA and the cumulative credits earned. 

Reports/Student Summary: 9:02

Let's look at another report.  The Student summary report.  Since ThinkWave is always updated with the data from all the teachers in your school, an administrator could get a good view of how a student's doing by generating the student summary report.  Either by group or by a particular student, you could get every single assignment grade a student has, as well as the grade by assignment type or overall grade a student has.  This is a good report to get an over-all status of  a student's progress, or if there's a parent meeting, this report is always available for an administrator to look at.  As you can see the classes, all assignments and the results of the assignments are all shown.  The grades by assignment type, and how much each assignment type is weighed.  So this student for example has: Complete on homework and 99.0% on Math Quiz, and all the assignments within those categories are shown.

Reports/Various 10:03

There are other reports you can print out in the reports tab, including login instruction sheets, if you don't want to e-mail out the instructions you can print them out on paper.  There is also a series of attendance reports, class schedule reports, and missing assignment reports.  You can print out grade-books for all the teachers in your school to see standard grid-based grade-book for all the grades a teacher has given a student.  Also down here you can create custom reports from the ground up, or ask us to customize a report for you.  More on that in another video.

Setup/General: 10:47

Now I'll show you some of the setup functionality.  There's a files area, where you can see the files that teachers uploaded and files you've uploaded as part of assignments or part of messages that are sent to Students and Parents.  Grade levels can be added or changed, if you use it in a college level setting you can change all grade levels to be appropriate for your college level.  Groups allows you to add custom groups for students.  And here you can set the Max Comment Length.  And here you can fill out the full School Name and Address.

Setup/Grading: 11:37

The administrator has the ability to set final grade scales for school, as I was showing earlier.  You can add multiple grading scales as you can see here, there's a kindergarten grading scale, and a prescholar.  There is also non-calculated grades, that you can assign to class in addition to calculated grades.  There's the ability to round grades, if you use percentages as a final grade.  And the minimum percent that you allow a student to get, if they are to gain credits for that class.  To edit the grading scale you simply click on one of the grades.  It gives you the ability to change the grade, to a number or any other grade value you want.  You can put in a description, this site is GPA value, Honors GPA Value and the minimum percent that's required to achieve that grade.

There's other setup options.  Graded skills are something you can detach to class, especially lower level classes, such as kindergarten.  And those graded skills can be added to report cards and transcripts.

Setup/Import Export: 12:54

The Import Export function allows you to Import students from a CSV file.  And the Export Options allows you to Export Attendance by day or attendance by class, export grades and custom field data.  All of these export options work by clicking on the link and it automatically generates a CSV compatible text file.

Setup/Schedule: 13:28

Year allows you to customize the start and end date of the school year.  Terms and subterms are very flexible within ThinkWave.  The one thing to remember is terms appear on transcript reports and subterms do not.  But other than that you can have over-lapping terms so if your school uses one term for lower level students and another term for highschoolers you can have both term structures in the software and just assign classes to the different term structures.  You can have multiple subterms, so you can have progress reports and progress periods you can print out on report cards and that's an area that's very flexible.  You can even change the subterm dates once a semester started.

Periods are very flexible too, you can change the starts and end time of the periods, as well as add your own period for you school.  If you have a period that covers the whole day, you can do that.  If you have different day schedules for example for minimum day you can assign different periods to those minimum days, or you can shorten the periods and remove 5th and 6th periods from the minimum day if you would like.

Here you can set holidays for certain days of the year and it would climate those days from taking attendance.  


Here under attendance, you can edit the current attendance marks.  Or create a custom attendance Mark.

The attendance Rules I was mentioning here earlier, could be setup in the daily calculations, by default they’re set for one teacher mark for a period, that means that if a teacher marks a student absent for one period, that makes the student absent for the whole day.  Those could be changed so a student has to present for a set minimum number of periods to get a day mark, or you could actually set it to a percentage of periods or a percentage of minutes to get the day mark.

Setup/Account Owner Functions: 15:28

Here you can add additional Administrators.  Click on “Add Administrator” and it will give you an invite code to send the person you want to make an administrator.

And here you can Lock & Unlock a year, if a year is locked then you will be unable to modify any data within that year.  And finally the Rollover function, which allows you to Rollover the classes, students and groups from one year to another.  Or Roll a year back to input historical data.

Setup/Reports: 16:04

Here you can set the defaults for all reports created within the ThinkWave system.  Here is the Font.  Here is where you would select the view options for the Header on reports.  And finally here you can upload your school’s logo, it must be in a jpg format.

Setup/Custom Fields: 16:32

Here is where you can create custom fields, you can select the name, who it applies to like all students, teachers or certain groups.  And here if you want a short text field, long text field, a date field or a predefined choice.  Custom tabs allows you to organize your custom fields.  And in Record Values you can add the values in the custom fields directly.

Setup/Online Access: 17:17

Online access is where you could invite teachers, students and parents to access integrated grade-book and information, you can put their e-mail and either print their invitation or e-mail them directly, there is also a way to e-mail everyone at one time.  The teachers, the parents and the students get a e-mail with a link and an embedded code, they just click on the link and create a user name and password.  And then they go to ThinkWave.com on the top right and click the login button to login.  So everyone has a view of only their own data.  I'll show you the teacher and the student/parent view in a few minutes.  You can also customize the invite message here.

Settings controls who has online access for the current year, you can also disable mailings.  Add your school’s blog right here.  And here you can set your default LogOut URL.  So when a student, teacher or parent is visiting your School’s ThinkWave portal and then they log out, you can send them back to your school’s website.

There's an ability to embargo final grades.  If you want final grades to show up after a certain date, you put the date there. 

Teacher View/Intro: 18:41

Now I'll show you the teacher grade-book and grade-book view.  An Administrator can access the teacher's grade-book by going to the Teachers tab.  Then clicking “Visit Teacher Gradebook”.  Teachers of course access their grade-book and only their grade-book through their login at ThinkWave.com  By clicking on the top right.  But administrators can get access to the teacher's grade-book this way.

Teacher View/Dashboard: 19:07

The Teachers have the ability to create messages for all the students they teach and all the classes they have under their purview.  As well they upload attachments, syllabuses or any general handouts, as part of their general messages.  From here the teacher has shortcuts to Messages, Students in their classes, their gradebook and linked accounts.

Teacher View/Students and Gradebook View: 19:39

By clicking on the student’s tab a teacher can see all details on all the students in their classes.  And clicking the Gradebook tab brings you to the full teacher’s gradebook.  Teachers have a full grade-book functionality, so once they login all their students and classes are pre-populated.  So to create an assignment teachers click “add assignment”  Here is where they have the name of the assignment, the type, date, and type of grade that's given.  ThinkWave allows teachers to have very flexible grading options, they can create their custom grade-scales as well.  They can mix points, percents and a sort of custom grade-scale.  There's also the ability to attach a file, to allow students to turn in assignments online, so when the students login there's a link that appears that allows them to send the assignment back to the teacher, so they can save paper.  And there's an ability to create a description and add a weblink.  That shows for students and parents when they login.

The grade-book screen has multiple ways to enter grades.  There's the standard grid-type grade-book view.   teachers can type the grade directly into the grid.  Or select a letter if it's a discreet grade like an A or a B.  There's also by assignment view, where the teacher can put in more detailed comments on each assignment, like give feedback for the students.  There's also a place where the turned in assignments from the students appear in the right column here.   The final grades by class tab, is where the the teachers could see the calculated percent and how it's converted into the school-wide scale.  In the override they can either enter a different percent or they can actually enter the over-ride grade.

Those once they're saved convert into the final grade, and go on the report card.  The area on the right here, is where teachers can put comment that appears on both the student and the parent webviews as well as the report card.  And those comments can be up to 5,000 characters by default and that can be changed in the Administrator view.

Teacher View/Attendance: 21:54

The Attendance screen, from the teacher grade-book is for the teachers to take attendance for that designated period, just mark a student absent or tardy, they don't have to mark any student if they are present, the system will automatically assume the student is present.  They can put a comment in the minutes, like tardy, and that goes immediately to the administrator.  So that quickly establishes the attendance at the beginning of the school day.

Teacher View/Reports: 22:23

The teachers have a series of reports. Here there’s Class Detail, just select a class, a term then click generate.  And here’s the Gradebook Report, it will print out like a standard grid-based gradebook.  Class Enrollment allows teachers a quick overview of who’s enrolled in the class.  And Weekly Attendance will give the teacher a quick report on the attendance for that week.

A teacher can also print out a missing Assignments report,  as well as a student summary report.  And all of these will generate as ready to print PDFs.

Teacher View/Setup: 23:28

In the Setup Tab, ThinkWave allows teachers to have a lot of flexibility in how they create their assignment types, and how they create their grading options.  Here they can select their default grading options.  The grading option allow them to set grading options as a default for the classes in their grade-book.  Or they could drill in on a specific class and override those defaults by a specific term or subterm. Also the term grade could be derived from a percentage of sub-term grades, and those are calculated automatically.  They could use assignment type weighting, where homework, projects, quizzes and tests are a certain percent of the grade.   

And here they can choose assignment types for use in their classes.  And here they can copy assignments from other years or other classes to their current classes. 

Now let's return to the administrator view by clicking return from visit at the top.  This will bring you back to the administrator access.

Student View/Dashboard: 24:46

Now let's go back and look at the student/parent view.  In a similar fashion the administrator can visit a student or parent account by clicking “Visit Student Account” here.  That will bring you to see what the students see when they login.  When students login they see all the messages from their administrators and their teachers, they can download any attachments or syllabuses that are available within the messages.  And here they can see upcoming assignments that are due in the next couple of days.  From the dashboard a student can quickly access Messages, Assignments, Attendance, Grades and account settings.

Student View/Assignments: 25:34

When a student needs detail about their assignments they can get a detailed list by date.  Either with all sections or a specific class only.  The upload link, where students can turn in assignments online is right here, so a student can click on the link and upload their assignments to turn into the teacher.  The teachers can also attach files for the assignments, so that a students can download them and work on them from home or at school. 

Student View/Attendance: 26:04

By clicking on the Attendance tab, a student can see all the absences and tardies they may have.  By clicking on the dropdown they can see any comments the teacher may have recorded regarding their tardy or absence.

Student View/Grades: 26:26

The final grades for each of the classes and terms are available here, as well graded skills and comments.  As I showed earlier these are how the grades can be embargoed by an administrator or they can be shown anytime as the terms progresses.

Parent View: 26:50

The Parent view is similar to the student view, the parents just don't have the ability to upload assignments back to the teachers.  But they get the latest messages and the recent results when they login.  Parents and students can also click on accounts and they can adjust which days they receive e-mails or they can set e-mail updates for every day of the week.

Tutorial final: 27:15

Let's go back to the administrator view.  So this is the overview of the cloud-based ThinkWave school admin system.  If you have any questions, please contact us.  There is also the ability to start a 30 day trial which has full functionality.  If you would like to request a setup, training session or a demo please contact us as well. at suppor@thinkwave.com Thanks for watching.

Get started with ThinkWave School Management Software

Cloud-based School Management Software

Ideal for Distance Learning. Fast to Deploy. Uniquely Easy-to-Use.

Start Your School 30 Days Free

Free Online Gradebook

Distribute assignments and collect homework. Powerful messaging.

Start Free Gradebook Does Not Expire

Buy Premium Gradebook