Learning Japanese

Each JLPT exam level takes about 1 year of effort, studying about 15 hours a week.

There is little benefit to stopping at N5 or N4 mastery, so plan on at least 3 years of effort.

Master N3 to read children's literature. Master N2 to read newspapers. Master N1 to socialize with Japanese.

Master N5 before learning to use dictionaries.

Until N3 is mastered, the majority of study time should be spent on a formal course.

Spoken vocabulary size should always be at least 5 times the number of kanji known.

Drills for spoken language mastery: memorizing dialogues, stimulus-response drills, listening comprehension or transcription.

Drills for reading language mastery: shuffled reading examples. These can have glosses (both reading and English) for advanced words.

Drills for writing/typing language mastery: English language prompts.

Repeat drills until they can be performed flawlessly. Shuffle the order if possible.

After N3 is mastered, incorporate interactions with native Japanese speakers.

Course for N5, N4, and N3 mastery: Genki and Tobira.

Alternative course for N5, N4, and N3 mastery: JSL and JWL. This only teaches 100 kanji however.

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