Introducing The New italki Teacher Site

Comments

302 comments

  • Avatar
    Jayson

    Is there any other website to choose?

    1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Stefano the Polyglot

    I gave up changing Italki long ago.

    1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Vanessa (Edited )

    Like many others who rely on Italki as their primary source of income, I am beyond horrified with these changes and especially since you go ahead and make changes without consulting us first and give us less than a week's notice— us teachers who are the ones who are making you money!!!  What I will say will be repetitive, as many others have stated all the following  points before me, but  it needs to be said again and again until perhaps it finally gets through!!!!  I just hope that Italki hasn’t stopped reading this thread after they sent us the follow-up message this morning.

    • Keep the 45-minute classes => I have many students who only book 45 lessons. Some of them are introverted and don’t like to take longer classes as it’s too much for them. The 45-minute classes are extremely helpful to me when I have back-to-back lessons as I get a breather. I do quite a bit of 60 minute back-to-back classes and they are extremely hard on me physically and mentally. I'm sure other teachers feel the same.


    • Implement 50 or 55-minute classes instead of 60 minutes => As I mentioned above,  back-to-back lessons are hard on me and on other teachers who use Italki as their primary source of income. Sometimes I change my schedule around so I don’t do so many back-to-backs, but I hate doing this because this means that this a loss of income for me and for YOU!!! I guess I could make the 60-minute classes 55 minutes but I feel like students will feel cheated if I do.


    • Keep the individual cancellation policies and make them visible on the teacher’s profile => Everytime I get new students or trial requests, when I send  them my welcome message I tell them to read and familiarize themselves with my individual policy that’s on my profile . Some of them read it and find it, but others come back to me and tell me how they can’t find it on my profile and so I just copy and paste it for them in the message centre. The problem with  the individual cancellation policies is not that they are unreasonable, but that they are hidden. I notice that many Italki students don’t even go on the Italki Help Support site anyway so this means that we absolutely need to have our cancellation policies CLEARLY VISIBLE on our profiles.


    • Waiting for a late student or a no-show for the entire class => As someone mentioned, this encourages students to treat us like doormats and it doesn’t teach students to take responsibility for their own actions. My cancellation policy is reasonable and is  aimed to weed out students who want to waste my time and  who don’t respect my time.  Us teachers are self-employed and we don’t have time to waste waiting around crappy students who can’t be bothered to let us know that they won’t be showing up to class for whatever reason. I would rather be preparing lesson materials for serious students (as that takes times) and teaching those who do show up on time. I get it emergencies do happen,  but from my experience when a student is late for more than 15 minutes or doesn’t show up, it’s never because of an emergency. It’s from carelessness. 

    • Keep Instant Tutoring -> I don’t use this function often,  but I do use it. I had students who wanted to extend their lessons with me and this was the only way I was able to get paid and do it without creating some absurd fake bookings in my schedule just so that I can paid. It’s convenient for both them and for me.

    • Fix the messaging system => Please implement an option where I can mark my messages as unread or star them so that I can get back to responding to them later. As a teacher,  I have to prioritize my tasks and while I read all of my messages  when I can, I can’t always get back to them right away.  With the current messaging system I have to use to my ToDoIst app to keep track of who I need to respond to which is incredibly inconvenient.

      Seriously Italki,  why implement more changes and these so-called improvements when you haven’t even got your messaging system together? Italki’s approach to improvement makes no sense at all. I hate to sound harsh but this is the reality of things.

     

    16
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Elena

    I'm especially concerned about 45-min sessions. Some of my students are teachers, too, and it is sometimes hard to find a slot for studying in their busy schedule. And some students can study only on weekends, so they book several lessons in a row. Yet, 45 min sessions allow for some flexibility, so they can make sure to get ready for their next session. I'd rather see 60 min sessions made optional.

    6
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Michele The Euroglot

    I am learning Arabic and taking Arabic classes on italki. Yesterday, I had a 60-minute class with a tutor but found it long, so I have requested a 45-minute pack with him now.

    As a teacher, I do have some learners who book 45-minute classes, too.

    And I do have quite a few learners who book Instant Tutoring sessions when I am available, because their schedule is unpredictable, so they cannot book in advance.

    I would like both 45-minute classes and Instant Tutoring to stay until you can find a real improvement for them. Removing Instant Tutoring would be a step backward!

    7
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Bianca (Edited )

    italki's revenue p.a. is estimated $15 Mio!!! - Thanks to the community of teachers, tutors & students here.

    source: https://www.owler.com/company/italki

    I, with my humble income, pay italki about $ 2,000 p.a. for their service. For many of you this will be much more. Now, I'm thinking what I could do with these $ 2,000: easily get a domain, host a website & even get a web designer to set it up. And from then on, I wouldn't have to pay anyone anything and had the full control...

    The funny things is, that when I was looking for a teaching platform some 3 years ago, the idea to pay a fee seemed a good one. Someone is managing all the necessary stuff, calendar, payment, etc. And I can focus on my work.

    There are platforms where you don't pay a fee and I wondered where the hook was. Ads? or other nuisances? So, I deliberately chose italki. 

    But, the disrespect we all have faced in the last 5 months is just outrageous and the idea of paying for such a mistreatment is outright absurd. And, I'm honestly sad about the development of this site. It has many great things and they are working on messing it up.

    Why is there no real communication on a language learning site that advertises itself during the quite long loading time: "italki changes the way the world learns foreign languages"??? Have they forgotten that they just provide the platform but their slogan needs to be earned by us teachers & tutors?

    sad sad sad

    13
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Fran Exposito

    Are you considering the idea of making the students confirm the lessons as soon as possible? It’s quite annoying to have up to 10 lessons or more to be confirmed the last day of the month?
    Or are teachers the only ones who have
    obligations?
    (Please read this message with the proper ironical intonation :-D)

    7
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Murillo Costa (Edited )

    Unbelievable! Italki never, ever contacts teachers or students to get feedback before setting new changes. This is disrespectful to the community, both teachers and students. Removing 45-minute lessons is just a shot to the foot. Many students prefer that option and for us teachers is actually good so we can have some rest in case we get many lessons in a row.

    The cancellation policy, well, I'm sorry Italki, with all the respect, my students will get a private message about my own personal cancellation policy. I will not be in front of the computer or be waiting for a student who will probably not show up. I should also add that sensible and responsible student would message the teacher before saying that there will be a delay (and would tell more or less how long this delay will be), I've been working on italki and as an online teacher for many years and I can guarantee that after 15 minutes, if the student sends no message before saying that there would be a delay, it is clear that the student has forgotten the lesson, is sleeping or at a party. I know!! Again, sensible, respectful and responsible people would let you know beforehand. 


    12
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    MJ.Korean

    First of all, I would like to ask that please do not remove 45 minutes lesson. Compared to 60-min lesson, 45-min lesson is good for both students and teachers since we can get a break time. And some people can't afford to take 60-min lesson. If you want to make a good user experience, You had to survey from all users who are teachers and students before making a decision with these important changes.

    Now I'm worrying how should I explain for this abrupt changes to my students who have been taking 45-min lesson for about 1 year.

    2
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    MJ.Korean

    Actually, My most students are taking 60-min lesson.
    In my opinion, 60-min lesson is much more helpful for a student than 45-min lesson. It's mainly because teacher can teach more. So 60-min is a default lesson.
    But I want to say again that the optional like 30, 45, 60-min is really helpful for teachers and students.
    To remove a 45-min lesson will make burden on both a student and a teacher.

    1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Deb

    Taking away the 45 min lesson and instant tutoring is a really bad idea. I'm a teacher and a student and as a student, I usually prefer taking 45 min lessons. I have some teachers who only offer 60 min lessons, so I might book those, but I would always prefer 45 min lessons. It's just the perfect length in my opinion. I often had the feeling with some teachers that after 45 min basically everything has been said and the last 15 min are just for killing time.
    And 45 or even 50 min lessons give us teachers some time to eat a snack or do some administrative work between lessons, which can be quite a lot when you take notes and make corrections for students. I prefer sending these to the student right after the lesson, which isn't possible when I have another lesson coming up right away.
    I haven't had a lot of experience with instant tutoring myself, but I understand the importance of it, since some students have a really busy life and whenever they want to take a lesson, they won't want to wait at least 24 hours for it to take place. I would also like to take some lessons more spontaneously as a student because sometimes I have some free time and feel in the mood for practicing languages right away without waiting 24 hours.
    Italki without its teachers would be nothing but any other ordinary language exchange platform.

    7
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Yevgeni Yeliseyev

    As many of my colleagues said above, Informal Tutoring is not just a conversational practice. And many of my students prefer 90 min lessons. Why not to keep this option?

    5
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Christophe (Edited )

    Removing 45 and 90 minutes lessons is a very bad idea.

    I give conversation lessons and I can tell you it's very different from informal tutoring.

    One of my friends recently joined Italki as a teacher, and she was especially interested in instant tutoring, more than scheduled lessons.

    As a teacher for 8 months, I can't remember you sent a survey to ask us about the contemplated changes. Did you?

    5
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    TutorTracy

    As many of the other teachers here have brought up, there are changes that need to be made to improve italki. However, NONE of the changes above are to the benefit of teachers. After joining italki a couple years ago, I was immediately disappointed by how little italki obviously values its teachers. Please actually talk with teachers who are using your site before making changes like this.

    I, personally, will NOT be removing my individual cancellation policy, and if italki tries to force me to do so, I will leave the site. There are other teaching websites on the internet that respect teachers more and it would behoove italki to work harder to make sure their teachers are protected from student misuse (of which there is a LOT on italki) and happy with the site. Taking away cancellation policies is the opposite of that and is an abuse of teachers' time and skills.

    There are many great suggestions and pleas among the teachers already written here. To keep your teachers on your site, pay attention to them. 

    5
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Hani Calista (Edited )

    1. 45 mins is good, you need to add it back

    2. You need to give option that teacher can create 30 mins and 45 mins class instead of 60 mins for every lesson, like I don't want to teach "informal tutoring" for 1 hour but I cannot delete 60 mins class

    3. Informal tutoring is not always about conversation practice better you create a description box for Informal tutoring (like what you did for Professional lesson ) so the teachers can describe what kind of informal tutoring class they provide for the students

    4.  We need student's lesson progress sheet instead of "feedback" for student, it will ease teacher to track their student's progress and for what they have learned and haven't, and what they will learn for the next upcoming lesson

    5. Instant tutoring is very good to earn some extra money and to get new student instantly, you shouldn't close this feature even for a while

    6. Individual cancellation policy for teacher is very important because the teachers normally teach in some where else and sometimes the students want to cancel the class at the last minute. Just make it more visible kind of "pop up message" when the students want to book the class.

    7. add more options to teach the students like using "Zoom" not only Skype, and google hang out 

    8. waiting for around 10 days and only can withdraw the money twice a month are not a good options because other learning-teaching platforms give more flexibility to the teachers to withdraw the money

    7
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Tutor Dilara

    The 1-hour lesson is mandatory, we get it. But at least, can you make it 50 minutes? Maybe you should try to teach 4 or 5 lessons in a row and you will understand us. 

    3
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Michael McCristall

    I posted this before, and I'll say it here too. I like that Italki is trying new things and updating the experience. Bravo for that. The new website looks sleak and clean. I think most of these changes are for the best. 

    The 2 things that I, and as can be seen from the posts, pretty much every teacher don't like is the new message system and removing Instant lessons. 

    Your message system alerts me to things that I just did, lol. I don't need to be alerted when I leave feedback on a lesson, I know, I just did it. 

    I hope you'll continue making positive changes to the user experience, but nix the changes that just about everyone doesn't like

    0
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Andrew B

    ABSOLUTELY AWFUL NEW WEBSITE!!! Nothing works on here! Well done, italki!

    You have two choices as I see it, italki:

    1) Continue this stupidity and your business will go down the drain. We, the teachers and students, are intelligent enough to realise that we have a lot of choice these days.

    2) Reinstate the original website and your business MAY recover and get back to how it was. It worked before! Any normal business would slowly add improvements to that successful model, not slowly destroy it!

    I know which option I would opt for. However, you will probably stick with option 1 for some bizarre reason. Anyway, I'm going to smash my head repeatedly against a brick wall now. 

    1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Guyomar

    It appears that on the new site, we can no longer :
    1 Set a personal availability message. This was useful to let students know certain days should be booked way in advance to get the time they want, notify people of vacation time and post links to useful content (NOT promoting any other services). Now it is not possible.
    2 It also seems that if we want to upload a new video, we are required to upload it to italki with no option for an outside link.

    Finally, I tried to update my informal tutoring description and the update failed twice with no indication as to why.

    I've submitted this feedback on the website form. Disappointing.

    4
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Luciana Pegoraro

    Adding available times in the calendar is even worse in the new site because the space is so small and we can only see 2 times (like 00:00 and 00:30) and we have to roll it up and down till we get to the time we want.
    Then after we choose the first time, the second one starts showing from 00:00 again and not from after the first time we chose (let's say if the starting time is 15:00 the end time starts showing from again 00:00 and not from 15:00).

    And the message system is still very bad (to be polite)...

    Congrats, italki! (#irony)

    2
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Tom Stotesbury

    Some problems with the calendar. 

    1. The classes are not in time order... I mean really?....

    2. I can't see the whole name of my student. I have more than one student called Maria I don't want to have to click into the class to see which one it is.

    2
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Eva

    Where have you hidden "Notebook" and "Answers"?

    1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    David

    I don't know what all the fuss is, why doesn't everyone just use the app?

    -11
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Andrew B

    There's always one idiot troll. Shut up David! We're professional teachers: why would we want to do our work from a phone app?! 

     

    -1
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Amy Whitney

    I'm very disappointed with the number of features that aren't working correctly.

    I've found 5 critical things that aren't working correctly (everything from feedback comments deleting halfway through writing the message when the page randomly refreshes to being unable to delete availability mid-week in the availability calendar) and half a dozen things that don't make sense. 

    This update was released way too early without proper testing. Very unprofessional from a company that is growing to be an industry leader. 

    I have sent the screencast recordings of the issues I've found to italki support. Hopefully their engineering team gets this site working correctly asap. 

    One positive thing is that we don't have to enter our password for every feedback comment anymore!

    3
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Inna

     

    Thank you for keeping the 45 min lessons. It‘s a relief after a few days of stress that we teachers have had here recently.

    I’m still not very happy with the new version.

    Classes on the calendar should be shown in the time order! 

    Our diplomas and certificates shouldn’t be hidden. It’s important! 

    Rolling the time on the calendar is very inconvenient.

     

    2
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Christina

    What about the "find a teacher" search? I think it is in serious need of restructuring. 

    For example, it recommends me myself! Why is that permitted by the feature design?

     

    2
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    David

    @Andrew hmmm a 'professional' teacher who tells someone to 'shutup' like a 5 year old. My comment is a genuine, legitimate one. It's 2019, those of us who are digital nomads and travel full-time use apps, not websites.

    Are you seriously telling me you would waste time leaving lesson feedback on a website when you can do it in a fraction of the time on the app?

    -8
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Andrew B

    I'm not even going to waste time arguing with you David. We are all friends here and should be working together and helping each other against what italki are doing, and you've basically told everybody to stop whining and just use the app. Seriously??! How is that comment going to help! I think you got off lightly with 'shut up' (by the way, two words David, not one). 
    I'm sorry, but those of us who are proper teachers uses laptops/netbooks and desktop versions of things to be quicker and more efficient. I would rather spend half a minute typing feedback on a desktop version than wasting double (if not more) that time on an mobile phone or tablet. 
    You're entitled to your comments David, yes, but if they are not relevant, which yours wasn't to be fair, then you're just unnecessarily annoying people like you have done with me. No need to respond David, as I won't. 

    0
    Comment actions Permalink
  • Avatar
    Katerin

    Hola Equipo Italki,
    Me alegra mucho que estén haciendo estos cambios. Me gustaría mucho darles una sugerencia, tomando en cuenta el poco tiempo que llevo en su plataforma tiene muchas cosas positivas y una de ellas es que los profesores podemos interarticular directamente con los estudiantes y esto puede aumentar la probabilidad de tener más clases. Por otro lado para algunos profesores Italki es nuestro trabajo por lo tanto la disponibilidad que tenemos es a tiempo completo.
    Mi sugerencia seria que en los cambios que están haciendo tomen en cuenta a los profesores que tenemos tiempo completo ya que los alumnos no tendrían tantos cambios en sus clases por falta de disponibilidad. Les comento esto porque un familiar toma clases en Italki hace 8 meses y los inconvenientes que se ha encontrado es que muchos profesores tienen poca disponibilidad y los cambios son muy frecuentes y por supuesto causa molestia porque hay días que no recibe ninguna clase por estos cambios tan frecuentes, este familiar se ha encontrado con profesores que tiene solo 2 horas de disponibilidad. En cambio sí el estudiante puede fácilmente encontrar a profesores que nos dedicamos a tiempo completo el porcentaje de clases se aumentaría y los beneficiados seriamos todos, tanto ustedes como los profesores podríamos ganar más dinero y los estudiantes podrían planificar fácilmente sus clases. De esta manera pienso que no habría mucha deserción de los profesores y estudiantes.
    Espero lean mi comentario, nos ayudarían mucho a los profesores que tomamos a su plataforma como nuestro trabajo. Muchas gracias por darnos este espacio. Hasta pronto.
    Saludos Katerin.

    0
    Comment actions Permalink

Please sign in to leave a comment.