Can I tutor from my phone or tablet?
Unfortunately, no. You can only tutor from your laptop or computer. We've found that this greatly helps our tutors maintain a stable connection and setup, thereby greatly reducing the number of technical issues. Currently we do not believe we can deliver a quality tutoring session to our students over a mobile device or tablet device but we're always keeping up with new developments.
Why was I dropped from my Priority Hour?
We understand that internet outages, emergencies and missed calls happen to the best of us. That’s why our system is designed to overlook one-off misses. There is no need to write in unless there is something we can do to help (i.e. tech problems). Here are a few common reasons why you might miss calls or be detected offline:
If you navigate away from Cambly’s tutor side of the website and your computer goes to sleep or your internet cuts out or is experiencing seriously degraded performance (usually manifested in wildly varying or very low internet speeds and/or high levels of latency), you will likely be detected as offline. Additionally, Chrome will put inactive browser tabs to sleep. This means if you leave Cambly in the background Chrome may stop data transmission to it. This can happen even sooner if you are using your computer for other tasks especially those that are more bandwidth intensive. The best way to be sure this doesn’t happen is to keep your computer from going to sleep, not using your computer for multiple other data intensive tasks while on PH and keeping your Cambly tab in Chrome active.
Note, in the event of a Cambly-wide outage (see Cambly’s status page here), please do submit a request so we can restore any affected Priority Hours right away. In order to tutor on Cambly, we require all tutors to have a high speed internet connection.
A poor internet connection dramatically reduces the quality of the student’s experience; therefore, it’s essential for you to have consistent and high-quality connection. If our system detects a poor internet connection, you will be automatically dropped from a Priority Hour and get redirected to the tutor checklist page. You can proactively test against the tutor checklist here before session.
Additionally, here are some tips to improve your internet connection:
1) Make sure your hardware is prepped for Cambly: restart your computer and router regularly. If either is left on for too long they can start to cause performance issues.
2) Make sure your software is up to date: check to make sure you are on the most recent version of Chrome and of your computer’s operating system.
3) Optimize your internet connection: Try to minimize the amount of additional devices connected to your wifi, and minimize the amount of background programs/applications you may have running on your computer. Move your computer closer to your router, or if possible, plug directly into your modem.
4) Check your Chrome extensions: make sure you do not have an excess number of extensions running in your Chrome browser. An easy first step is to try to tutor from an incognito window (this disabled any extensions you have installed). If this resolves your issue, you may want to examine the extensions you have installed and decide which ones are necessary. There are a lot of different Chrome extensions out there, but often times anti-virus extensions are installed that severely impact a tutor’s ability to connect on Cambly, or an excess of extensions slow down a tutor’s browsing speeds.
5) Disable any anti-virus/firewalls you may have installed: most anti-virus software blocks the ports on your connection required to tutor on Cambly. (Avast, Norton Anti-Virus, McAfee are all examples). Try disabling those while you tutor. Additionally, make sure there are no firewalls in your connection. Beyond those firewalls installed by anti-virus software, some internet connections may have firewalls pre-installed. This can happen with wifi from Universities or other public wifi sources.
What should I do if I can't sign up for enough PHs?
There are a few reasons why you might not be able to sign up for as many Priority Hours as you'd like:
- It may be that other tutors have already reserved all the available spots for that hour and they are simply less available. However, tutors add/drop Priority Hours all the way up to the start-time, so you may want to periodically check back and see if a spot opens up.
- Your tutor rating may be below the average Cambly tutor's rating. Tutors with higher ratings receive higher Priority Hour access (up to 3 weeks). For tips on improving your rating, check out this article.
- While we aim to maintain a good balance between tutors and students, we may be in a period where our tutors are slightly oversupplied. This can cause more competition among tutors for chat minutes and Priority Hour seats. We're examining alternative ways of addressing this balance problem when it occurs though.
- If you miss multiple PH in a short period of time or release too many within 12 hours of start up, your PH access may get blocked for three days. If this happens, we will notify you via email. In the meantime, you can continue to tutor on-demand without PH. When the block is lifted, you will be able to sign up for as many PH as you were able to before.
It is a good idea to check back regularly on your Priority Hour page as more hours will become available throughout the week as Cambly sees more students coming online. Priority Hours will open up as the time approaches and will become available periodically throughout the week, not at any set time or day.
What if I don't want to teach a student and I don't want reservations from that student?
Not every tutor and student can get along and that's okay! If you find a student is not compatible with your teaching style, or for another reason you no longer want to do lessons with them then you can hide your account from the student.
To do this navigate to their student profile section which should look like the below section. Then click the Report/Ban button in yellow.
After clicking this button you should then have the option to Hide yourself from the student which will instantly be approved. Please note that hiding from a student should not be your first option. Please read this article to know when it's appropriate or not to ban or hide your profile from a student.
Warning! Only Ban the student if they have done something you would consider extremely offensive and they should no longer be on Cambly.
When you hide yourself from a student every upcoming reservation you have with them will automatically be canceled without any penalty. Take this into account if you have had this student for a long time! You may want to let them know you are moving on from teaching them and they can find a new tutor instead.
How far in advance can I sign up for Priority Hours?
Tutors can sign up for Priority Hours up to three weeks in advance. If Priority Hours are very popular at a given time, they might simply not be available during that window. However, some tutors drop Priority Hours up to 12 hours prior, so we recommend checking back often for availability.
Priority Hours will open up as the time approaches and will become available periodically throughout the week, not at any set time or day. The three-week horizon is adjusted based on your tutor rating. If you have a low tutor rating, we encourage you to pick up Priority Hours that are currently available, perform well on them, and then see your rating improve. Your priority hour access will improve with your tutor rating.
Where are my 15 guaranteed minutes for Priority Hour?
During a Priority Hour, you will be paid at least 15 minutes of guaranteed minutes. Those 15 minutes will only apply if you don't chat for 15 minutes. For example, if you chatted for 6 minutes during a Priority Hour, we would add 9 minutes to that Priority Hour to bring it up to the 15-minute guarantee.
If you talk over 15 minutes, then we just count your chat time. Please note that your Priority Hour history shows how many students you’ve chatted with and how many minutes you chatted during that Priority Hour. This does not count minutes chatted before or after the beginning of the Priority Hour, but you will still be paid for those minutes as usual.
Please note: Cambly will occasionally have bonus periods during which we guarantee 30 minutes of paid chat time during your Priority Hour, even if you don't get any calls. That means you'll be paid $5.10 or your actual paid chat time during that Hour, whichever is higher.
What if a student schedules a lesson during my Priority Hour?
No problem! You can have reservations and be on a Priority Hour at the same time. We automatically confirm reservations during Priority Hour. When students look at your tutor profile, they actually see both your reservation availability and the times you're scheduled to be on Priority Hours.
If another student calls you right before your reservation, you can accept their call. We will alert them that you need to go soon, so there should be no surprises when you need to excuse yourself. Once your reserved student calls in, we'll notify you directly in the chat window, and you'll be able to transition with one click into a new chat window with your reserved student.
What if a student's lesson time is more than the time I have available until my next lesson?
If you take a call on your PH, and you see that the student's time is more than the time you have available, we suggest informing the student as soon as you begin the session. Some students will look at tutor profiles and can see there in how many minutes you are available, but for students who chose "next available tutor," they are randomly connected to a tutor and don't see this information, making it a surprise when the tutor doesn't have enough time.
For example, if you have an upcoming reservation in 10 minutes, but the student has 30 minutes on their clock, you can say (and write in the chat box): "I see you have 30 minutes for a class. I only have 10 minutes because I have another class that will start in 10 minutes. I can speak with you for 10 minutes or until my reservation begins. If you want to call another tutor who can speak with you for the full 30 minutes, you can choose to end the call and find a different tutor. Thank you for your understanding.
I'm no longer getting the weekly Priority Hour bonus emails. How do I find out when the Priority Hour Bonuses are now?
In the past, Priority Hour bonus opportunities were emailed out to tutors on a weekly basis. However, now they are visible on the Cambly platform.To view the bonus details of a priority hour, you can hover your mouse over a priority hour with an indicated bonus (blue triangle). The bonus details will appear as pictured below:
To learn more about Priority Hour bonuses, please visit this Help Center article.