New Policy & Student View of Tutoring

Student View

Many tutors have mentioned they’d like to know what students see when they have a session. Our Growth team put a mock session together and we ended up with these videos. Below each video is a description of the feature each is showing. Enjoy!

5 Minute Inactivity

We noticed that students are ‘timing out’ due to 5 minutes of inactivity in >5% of sessions. Sometimes students have truly gone inactive; other times, students who stopped responding reach out to us saying that they needed more time to work. This inactivity is clearly frustrating for both students and tutors alike! 

While we’re already working on student feedback channels for tutors, we also want to ensure students have a chance to rejoin a session before being deemed inactive. The new check-in system starts on Monday, February 24 and works as follows:

  • 2 total minutes of student inactivity: quick check in
  • 4 total minutes of student inactivity (cumulative, 2 minutes after prior message): check in with small level of urgency
  • 6 total minutes of student inactivity: warning that session might end
  • 7 total minutes: end of session using typical canned response

Please try to be thoughtful about sending these messages. For instance, if you’ve sent multiple 2 minute warnings in a row, consider revising the message. If you know the student is working on a problem, you may choose to delay checking in. Additionally, if the student has indicated that they do not need any more help, there is no need to send this cadence of messages – simply end the session after 1 minute if the student has not already.

Below are the new canned responses for each type of message, found under the Session/Shift Ending tab. Please note that the first message in each group is more pertinent for students who should be responding to a quick question, while the second message is more applicable to students who are working on their problems. 

2 minutes:

Hi [student name], just checking that you’re still here!

Hi [student name]! Nice job working on this problem; please let me know if you get stuck!

4 minutes:

Hi [student name], please send me a message so I know you’re still here.

Hi [student name]! I think you’re working on the problem right now, but please send me a message so I can confirm that you’re still there. 

6 minutes:

Hi [student name], just letting you know that in order to keep the session going, I need you to send me a message in the next minute. Otherwise, I’ll have to end the session to help other students.

7 minutes:

Unfortunately you’ve been away from the app for more than 5 minutes. I have to end the session so that I can help other students. Feel free to submit another request whenever you’re ready!

Tutor Growth Pathway (TGP) Refresh Plan

TGP Performance

Hi everyone! Congratulations on a fantastic first cycle. We’re happy to announce that during the month of October you all achieved the highest average scores in the history of Yup!

  • 9.49 Composite Score
  • 92% “Thumbs Up” Student Ratings
  • 95% Claim Rate
  • 98% Attendance

TGP Updates

A few minor updates to TGP to help things go a bit smoother: 

  • Per tutor feedback, cycles will now end and start on the month. In accordance, this cycle now ends October 31. This ensures levels align with monthly payroll. 
  • There will be five set refresh dates each year: October 31, January 31, March 31, May 31, and August 31
  • We are implementing a “fast track” plan for new tutors. Tutors who have conducted >50 sessions at the end of a refresh will be eligible for the “fast track” based on individual analysis by the Yup Operations Team

Level Refresh Process

Please see below for the Level refresh process for the upcoming cycle end on October 31.

  • 11/3: all session disputes are due by 11:59 PM PDT Sunday
  • 11/4: all disputes will be responded to and new levels communicated via email (alternatively, check tutor workbooks for up-to-date metrics)
  • 11/4-5: any tutors moving down levels will have 24 hours to remove hours as needed; your email will explain the process for how to do so
  • 11/5-6: New tutors moving to Level 2 and all Level 4 tutors will have the chance to add hours; your email will explain the process for how to do so
  • 11/6-7: Other tutors moving up to Level 2 and all Level 3 tutors will have the chance to add hours; your email will explain the process for how to do so
  • 11/7 evening: Upcoming schedules to be confirmed with all tutors via email
  • 11/8: Typical 10 AM PT release for week of 11/11 will reflect new schedules

Please note that your new level will apply for payment starting November 1, even though we will not have the new schedule ready until 11/11 due to constraints in the refresh process. You will still receive October payroll on November 5th! 

Please reach out to with any questions or concerns. 

New Workbooks & Poor Communications Tag Update; DST Info

New Workbook Launch
We’re excited to announce the launch of the latest version of our Tutor Workbooks! A few exciting things you’ll find in your new workbook:

  • Workbooks now show all TGP metrics & your standing for both the last cycle and this cycle
  • We’ve included an hourly rate calculator based on your TGP metrics
  • Hyperlinks to information sources are included for any terms or calculations

Poor Communications Policy Update
We have instructed TQMs to start assigning poor comms / grammar tags more strictly to be in line with our current policy. This decision is a result of analyses showing that better grammar and communication practices correlate with higher student ratings and more successful session outcomes. We encourage tutors to be thoughtful about this, while still ensuring timely responses. 

We do not intend for this tag to be punitive, but rather to remind tutors to do their best to communicate most effectively. At the start of the next refresh period, we may implement a new policy that ties the Poor Communication tag to Rubric Score. We will have more information on this potential policy consideration at that time.

Daylight Savings Time
As a heads up for everyone, we’re happy to announce that the Yup Operations team will auto-adjust schedules to reflect the upcoming US DST shift. To accomplish this, we will reach out to confirm what DST zone you are in and then change your scheduled hours accordingly.

  • Europe: 10/27
  • North America: 11/3
  • Other: No DST

These changes will occur outside of any hours changes as a result of the TGP refresh period. We will be making an announcement on the TGP refresh process next week. 

TGP Updates, Tutor Survey, and Student Feedback Award!

Hi Tutors!

Next week, we’ll be sending out payroll for the first time using our new Tutor Growth Pathway. We appreciate all the feedback you have provided in order to improve the program. Specifically, we want to acknowledge some concerns that tutors have had about student ratings.

A number of tutors have felt unfairly penalized when students have given poor ratings for issues stemming from improper use of the app, such as:

  • Wanted Answer
  • Problem Unclear
  • Inappropriate Behavior
  • Cheating
  • Spam/Testing App
  • Wrong Subject

Per your feedback, we will be excluding student ratings from sessions with these tags. Expect to see these changes take hold in the next week.

Tutors have also asked about sessions where students have given poor ratings but the reason is unclear. Ultimately, we believe it is important in these situations to value the customer experience and trust that there are aspects of the experience that our QA system may not accurately measure, such as:

  • The student exits the session without sending a message because they had a past poor experience with a specific tutor.
  • The student gives a poor rating despite strong pedagogy scores because of the tutor’s tone or phrasing.
  • The student exits after a few messages because they feel that the tutor is unclear. We often find that low student ratings correlate with poor tutor grammar or unclear phrasing.

To address this necessary imperfection, we purposefully calculated our highest level metrics to equal average historical ratings. We feel this pushes everyone to perform at their best, but also allows some extra room for the occasional session that doesn’t go as planned.

Tutor Survey

We’d love to hear your thoughts on your overall experience as well as Humanity. Please fill out the September Tutor Satisfaction Survey by 10/4 so that we can best help improve your Yup experience!

Our September Outstanding Student Feedback Winner

Congratulations to Mary Ogawa for earning the Outstanding Student Feedback Award! This award is given to tutors who receive consistent, outstanding written feedback from students over several weeks along with demonstrating excellent overall performance.

Some of Mary’s exceptional student feedback comments include:

  • “Thank you very much for your help. This was my first time on YUP and I had an awesome first experience!”
  • “She was so amazing in helping me understand the concept and answering all my questions I had with a great attitude!”
  • “Thank you so much for being patient with me. I feel a lot more confident with these types of problems now. :)”

Way to go Mary


-The Yup Tutor Operations Team

Slack Updates and Introducing Emergency Response Tutor Program!

We’ve seen a lot of great feedback about how we can best use Slack as a company, and we’re excited to announce a few major updates based on your feedback!


We’ll be renaming and repurposing a number of Slack channels to make conversing clearer. Please see the first edition of Yup Tutor Slack Guidelines! You’ll find a list of renamed channels, an explanation of where to post what, and best practice recommendations.


We’re proud to announce a new trial program: Emergency Response Tutors

    • Emergency Response Tutors (ERTs) have the option to jump online during high wait periods (announced by automated alerts) and take extra sessions
    • Any tutor may voluntarily choose to be an ERT
    • For any time spent in-session but out-of-shift during high wait periods, ERTs will be compensated at 2x hourly rate
    • Please note that out-of-session time will not be compensated; as sessions will be allocated first-come first-served, we recommend coming online to help only if you’re already available – typical high wait periods only last 5-10 minutes
    • Join the Emergency Response Tutors Slack Channel

Because this is a trial, the parameters of this program may change. We’ll be testing its effectiveness over the next few weeks by measuring how many drops it prevents and also your satisfaction with the program. Please see this slide in the Tutor Policies deck for more detail and let us know of any questions!


We are introducing a form to systematize your feedback on students. This form should be a primary feedback mechanism so we can track student performance, but we also encourage you to continue to use the Student Feedback Slack Channel to offer helpful advice to other tutors.

In turn, Yup Tutor Operations will commit to consistent reports on the most common issues and students that are brought up. Additionally, we’re already working on product specs directly related to your feedback:

  • Internal student profiles that allow tutors to review comments from other tutors on best practice teaching styles for each student
  • Students’ can select preferred learning styles (e.g., more whiteboard, faster teaching, check in often) and these are shown to tutors 

Thanks and happy tutoring all!