Anyone tried Kanken?


The website has a little picture of a tablet peripheral, so I imagine it’ll be something like that.


I wonder if hiragana entry needs to be done that way too, or they let you use the keyboard.

I just paid the 2500 yen for the test at the convenience store. I really love that style of payment system.

EDIT: I just found in the FAQ they actually provide a wapuro romaji PDF for the test, so hiragana is definitely by keyboard.

It also says 10 minutes of practice time is provided. Tablet also confirmed.


I signed up for the paper test on February 3rd, Level 3.

Always got curious about the computer test, let us know your impressions when you do it. Might consider it for 準2


Have you done any of the other levels before?


Yes. I did the very low ones like 10-8 back at home years ago. In Japan I got 4 two years ago.

Still not ready for 3, but I should have 準2 by september, so…


Cool. Yeah, for me, the hardest thing about the move from level 5, which is largely quite similar to the levels below it in structure, to level 4, is the more challenging sections.

Things like 四字熟語, real ones, not words that happen to have 4 characters like in level 5. Like, level 5 has things like 南極探検. Level 4 has ones like 異口同音, where they blank out one kanji and just give you its reading.

Or like the “find the mistake” ones, where you are given a sentence where one word is using the wrong kanji, one that has the same reading as the one being incorrectly used. You have to spot the mistake and write the correct kanji.

And just so many vocab words…


Yeah, once you finish elementary school (5), things start getting tough. I sorta got used with the 誤字 questions and now don’t fear them that much anymore, but 四字熟語 is hell. Sometimes I get like 1/10 on my practice book. Really hopeless.

And the sheer amount of vocabulary and jukugos with the same reading is also a pain.

Hate stuff like 納める 治める 収める 修める


Thanks. You’ve actually made be excited about taking the test. Still looking forward to your report.


In my preparation for level 4, I hadn’t done a paper test until today. I was just using Kanken Training. It’s super convenient, but fails to capture the feel of a real test in a few ways, such as allowing kanji to repeat within the same test. Never for the same section, but it’s not unusual to see a word in the reading section and then again in, say, the okurigana section.

Today I took a paper practice test for the first time in this run-up to level 4. I was thinking I’d do worse than in the game, because the game gives you some crutches, like guessing on your messy characters in ways that can actually tip you off to the answer. But surprisingly, I did my best yet, 182 points. I think part of it is because you can kind of jump around wherever you want in the test, and it gives your brain a chance to work on things in the background while you move on to other questions you want to answer. The game version makes you answer a question immediately or pass and receive no points. You get no second chance to check your work at the end.

Even though I had that opportunity, I still lost a few points to sheer laziness, not double-checking my work completely. But it was interesting to see how the two ways of practicing feel so different.


Hard to give your 100% on a practice test :man_shrugging:
That being said, it also means you have even more margin than that. (If I remember correctly, the passing score is 160, with no section with less than 50%, right?)


I’m not sure if there are any “section minimum scores.” But the percentage right needed varies from level to level. For 10-8 and 2-1, I believe, it’s 80%, but for everything in between it’s 70%. So, 140 points. 120 points for 10-8, because those only have 150 total points. 160 points for 2-1. Yeah, pretty good room for error.


Took another paper test and got took some big hits on the yojijukugo and final writing sections. Still a passing score of 170, and still plenty of breathing room, but every point I drop bothers me.

First time seeing a bunch of the yojijukugo, and my usual intuition failed me.

In the general writing section, I didn’t know 密閉 or 補強 and once again stupidly lost points by simply forgetting to write the second characters of 肩幅 and 見舞う, words I know.


That’s how it works, though. By doing this test you have just added to your knowledge and increased your chances of passing/scoring well in the actual test. I eventually want to take JLPT and KanKen but I hope to go in there having passed the home tests first


Yeah, of course… I’m not begrudging the fact that I learned new words, just that I wish I hadn’t learned so much at once, haha.

Another one that got me was the structure of 冒険, because I quickly thought “risk / risk” in my head, so I marked that they are synonymous, but it’s actually a 険しいことを冒す structure. Gotta get out of starting from the English meanings.


Last paper test before the real thing tomorrow morning, and I set a new record! 192 points! No "stupid’ mistakes this time, like just forgetting to check things or not even answering a question. Well, two of the wrong answers were kinda stupid in the “derp, how’d I get that wrong” way, but it wasn’t really something double checking would have solved, I was just thinking about it wrong.

So yeah, it really shows how much the contents can vary by test. But at the very least, I think I’ve established that I’ve got more than enough breathing room.

It was really hard to resist the urge to practice level 3 stuff this week, haha.


Test is done

Finished a while ago, and then went to get lunch.


  1. The process reminded me a lot of the distance learning tests I took in college. Pretty simple sign-in process. Unfortunately they had turned the heat way up in the room. Just important to wear layers, but again this will depend on where you take it.

  2. The instructions and practice time were sufficient for getting a feel for the test, no issues there.

  3. The keyboard input for reading and multiple choice kicks ass. I finished the reading questions in like 5 minutes, because I wasn’t worried about my handwriting.

  4. The tablet is also quite nice, but I had one thing I would have liked to see. It only has “erase all” and “pencil eraser” modes for erasing. I would have liked an “undo the last line” button too.

  5. Because the tablet allowed for such fine control, I generally fretted a lot about how finely detailed my kanji needed to be. Unfortunately I’ll have no way of knowing if I got points deducted for errors in the forms of kanji, like points of connection or line length.

  6. This test was more like the one I got 170 on than the one I got 192 on. Plenty of words I had never seen before. 仏のケシン (化身), was one I had no clue on. I couldn’t remember the okurigana for 閉ざされる. And I already confirmed a few more were wrong. Luck of the draw.

I’m pretty confident I did pass, though, so on to level 3. Will get the results in about a week and a half.


Awesome and thanks for the update. I’ll come back in about a week and half with a congratulations offering.


It’s a bit earlier than expected, but the overall pass / fail results are available online now.

I passed!

I’ll receive the full detailed score report in the mail later this week or early next, I assume. It’s a bit anticlimactic to just boil the result announcement down to this


But it’s nice to know that I’m not jumping the gun with my level 3 prep.


For a significant period of time, I looked at the title and thought you meant “kenken”.

As in, you were asking a Japanese language question about kenken. It made sense in the moment. Probably.

That, and I didn’t know about the kanji test.

Congratulations on passing!




Awesome! Well done!