Verbling Review

Introduction

Verbling is an online teaching platform that matches language learners with a teacher of their chosen language. A whole host of languages are supported, with English being one of the most popular.

I have been a part of Verbling as both a teacher as well as a student and I would like to share my experience from both of these perspectives.

The main screen when you appear at Verbling for the first time.

Cost

For Students

Money is always a factor so let’s get this out of the way early. There is no fixed rate cost for a lesson on Verbling. Teachers can charge whatever they want in theory but it’s usually less for newer, less experienced Teachers, with the more experienced earning more. 

For this reason it is worth shopping around if you are a student. You get what you pay for so expect more quality lessons when you pay more but that being said you can find some great value Teachers if you spend a bit of time searching. 

For Teachers

As said in the last section you can set whatever price you think you are worth. If you have 20+ years teaching experience then you can earn quite a bit, that being said… If you have just joined the platform and have taught 0 classes so far on it then you may want to set your fee a little lower at the start to build up a client base before bringing the price up for new Students.

Verbling’s commission is 15%. This is their cut for promotion, website maintenance and for connecting you with Students. Make sure you factor this into the price you set. (e.g if you want to be making $30 an hour then you need to be charging around $35)

Here you can browse a list of teachers from least to most expensive.

Tools

For Students

The great thing about Verbling is the number of tools built into the platform to help you. These include: –

  • Translate (so you don’t have to jump over to google translate every few minutes when you can’t think of the right word)
  • Flashcards (to help make memoization easier)
  • Audio / Video uploads (to record lessons or for examples from Teachers)

For Teachers

The tools in the last section are great to help your lessons and provide extra value to your lessons.

On top of those, the tools specific for a teacher include: –

  • Analytics (track information such as response rate, earnings and average lessons per student)
  • Calendar sync (useful if you also teach on other platforms)
  • Workspace (organize homework, lesson plans etc to use) 
The lesson space, video is in the main space during a class with the tools under the chat box on the right hand side.

Availability

For Students

There are Teachers available from all over the world. This is especially the case with a language like English. You have a host of Teachers from places like the U.K. and the U.S.A as well as non-native speakers from other locations. As well as offering a potentially more convenient time, these non-natives may be able to offer a cheaper rate as well. That being said, you need to be extra careful that these Teachers don’t have their own mistakes or accents that you might pick up.

For Teachers

You can set your own hours, book holidays when you feel like it and work as little or as much as you want (providing you can find enough Students). That being said, if you aren’t available on a regular basis then your Students will find someone who is, so try to keep a somewhat regular amount of hours that can be booked.

The most popular times for Verbling Students seem to be in the evenings and weekends. The evenings though are very much dependent on where you are in the world so you could be teaching a lunchtime lesson in the U.K. to someone from Asia and still make it work.

The weekly schedule planner for teachers.

Lesson material

For Students

The lessons are made completely from scratch, for you! This in some ways is a big plus over group classes where you may be ahead (or behind) what is being taught. This way, the teacher always has your goals in mind and is working for you.

You need to find the right teacher for what works for you. Some Teachers on Verbling will have certain books, courses etc that they will progressively go through. Some spend most of the time having “free conversation”. Neither of these methods are wrong, you need to find the teacher whose teaching style matches your preferred learning style.

For Teachers

Again, there is NO material provided for lessons on Verbling. This may be a bit of a shake up if you have come from other websites that already have their own syllabus and you can just rock up to class and point the student’s to the material.

Make sure you plan your lessons in advance. If you are new and are struggling to figure out what to do in a class then there is plenty of material on the internet. Texts, exercises, games etc. The great thing is you can use the workspace to upload material as well as send things like audio or video over so you have a fair amount of creative control.

The workspace for my Japanese lessons.

Trial lesson

For Students

This is a great feature. You can pay a small amount for a 30 minute lesson. This gives you the opportunity to “test drive” a teacher. It isn’t long but it’s enough to figure out their teaching style, their personality and if you like them.

If you are happy with your pick then you can sign up to more classes. If you aren’t so happy then no worries, just pick another one!

For Teachers

The trial lessons are your chance to dazzle your potential Students. You get all of the features of a main class as well as a small payment for your time. Once the trial is complete you are able to give feedback on the student and their level to add even more value.

The “Trial Lesson” is less than 1/3 of the price of a normal lesson. 

Summary

As I said before, I have been a part of Verbling for a while, although I work for Verbling, I do also work for other platforms which has managed to keep this review fairly bias free.

You can get a trial class for a relatively small amount and if / when you’re ready to book further classes make sure to use this link to get even more discount!