Be a little more forgiving if I enter kanji reading for vocab?

get the override script. there’s nothing at all wrong with it if you’re not stupid.

if you’re strong enough to work through WK, you have the willpower to use it properly.
if not, you’ll give up anyway along the way and it doesn’t matter.

scripts are just such enormous QOL boosts, i wouldn’t wanna get back to “naked”. override, timeline, reorder etc are made to help you over WK’s natural humps.

i believe btw that Tofugu mixed up something. “randomness is good” is not wrong, but that really means:

  • no themed decks (kitchen utensils)
  • no fixed order (1, 2, 3…)

i also believe that not kanji/radicals should decide if you level, vocab should. instead of checking one “meaning” and one reading, testing it’s various uses is where the importance lies. but meh, it works, since i do everything anyway.

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I also agree that situations like the one the OP pointed out are frustrating, but isn’t it to ensure that the user knows the material? The system doesn’t know anything about the individual circumstances each user brings with them nor can it read the user’s mind when they intended to type something else. Instead it can only reinforce responses that are correct.

So it would be understandable if you were asked the reading of a kanji review, and you typed an acceptable reading but it wasn’t the one being looked for, but then the review was marked wrong anyway. This doesn’t benefit the user whatsoever because it reinforces something that should be correct is unacceptable. However, with the case of vocabulary, there’s less flexibility; “ぎゅう” isn’t the way to say “cow” in Japanese. So to ask for a reprieve to provide a correct response doesn’t help the user learn that there’s a difference.

In general, I would rather get something wrong here and get corrected here, than to get it wrong when using Japanese and be misunderstood, laughed at, etc. by people in real life.

Additionally, this becomes less of an issue later on because there aren’t as many single kanji reviews/single kanji vocabulary reviews as one goes on.

One thing to take into consideration is the learning philosophy behind the design of the platform. It’s apparent that you have your own beliefs (philosophy) behind learning just like everyone else here. The decisions made with regard to handling cases such as giving second chances for kanji reviews but not for vocabulary reviews is informed by research the designers feel will net the best results in the long term. If a user could point to data to the contrary, I think it would effect how things are presented on the platform. But no matter how one frames it, there’s no data out there that says reinforcing undesirable behavior (i.e., in this case an incorrect reading of a vocabulary word) will net in a positive outcome in the long term. In other words, I don’t think the designers of this platform are going to weigh the opinions (i.e., subjective feelings)) of users to the same degree as what studies and data show to be effective with their approach. People losing their motivation and quitting is such a common occurrence that it’s almost impossible to prevent it. Not to say learner motivation isn’t important, but attrition due to a decline in motivation is really difficult to curb especially when learners have a high probability to quit before attaining fluency. However, the important part is the approach is effective for the learners who can get past these minor setbacks.


it is, with reorder, override and so on.

they might have based their system on studies, but their interpretation of data wasn’t always correct IMHO. which is fine, since they provided the API for users to get the experience they want without it impacting the main site.


An item going back on the end of the queue isn’t a big failure; if you know the word well then it’s hardly going to be a strain if it’s one more review on your pile and getting it right a few extra times will boost your accuracy. Getting an item wrong through a typo or due to something like this isn’t the end of the world, and requiring a reading/meaning specific to the kanji’s lone usage is important imo. Youll stop doing this very early in your review sets once you become subconsciously aware of the colour coding.

Wanikani expects the level of accuracy you will want yourself when reading something in japanese and I think the way people treat it like a giant exam of passes and fails is worse for motivation than the way in which it marks a word as wrong.

Also I wouldn’t use an ignore script if you have even the tiniest feeling that you might abuse it. Getting a word wrong due to typos regularly probably just means you should be a bit more careful, as does this above criticism imo. I personally feel if they would implement the above I would be losing out on a great feature because I like that wk needs the vocabulary reading for vocabulary items; for some words it’s the only time a kun gets used and if I would be given a second chance, I’d get it right, the item would be burned faster and then I’d misread it when I actually came across it in the wild.


No. Nein. Non. Nay, my fair friend. You must suffer like the masses and accept your crabigated fate :sweat_smile::sob:

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So I think I interpret the way the reviews work differently than you do–I don’t think of the shaking as an indication that the answer you provided was correct but not what they were looking for; I interpret it as “we think you aren’t answering the question we’ve asked; try again.” For example, if you just hit the enter key without entering any text, it shakes, and I don’t think that’s an indication that nothingness is always an acceptable reading or definition. Similarly, I haven’t tested this but I suspect that if you put in one of the more esoteric readings of a character with many possible readings (not just “not the main WK reading”, but one that isn’t mentioned at all on the site), you would be marked wrong even though it’s actually a valid reading. And to actually address the bit I quoted above, I believe that a user actually can learn that there’s a difference when they’re shown that the answer they gave isn’t correct.

So folks who are adamant that they won’t learn the correct kun’yomi reading if they’re given this second chance to answer a question, how do you differentiate between kanji that are parts of words and kanji that are standalone words when you’re reading an actual text and don’t have the color to fall back on? (note: this is not a request for advice. I’m just asking for information about your experiences.)


I have done 185778 reviews and never mixed up the two. They are separate colors.

Get the reorder or override if you think you can handle it. Otherwise, any other solution would be wanikani enabling people to get by without properly learning.


The shaking in itself only means “try again”. As you said, it shakes when you input nothing, and it also does this when you type in non-kana characters for a reading. This is their way of saying “your answer was completely irrelevant, try again”. In the case of the on’yomi and kun’yomi for kanji reading, they are saying “this was a valid answer, but not the one we wanted, try again”. This is not an interpretation, it’s what is actually happening based on how the code works. You are correct that it wouldn’t accept esoteric readings, but that’s not necessarily because the answer is wrong; it’s just that WaniKani doesn’t usually add uncommon / less useful readings.

You’re always reading a word in this case, so there’s nothing to differentiate.


No, the user scripts exist for precisely the reason in your first quoted sentence. Some people can have a certain thing without forcing everyone else to have what they have. Plenty of people like the default behavior. I’m one. I want it to mark me wrong, when I’m wrong.

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Didn’t we discuss exactly the same thing like two days ago?

[WK groundhog for the win. How do you like the radicals? A tad too slow anyone?]


:sheep: …yeah, I saw that this afternoon. I clearly did a bad job of noticing this morning; I’m sorry about that. It definitely has the feel of a conversation that’s been rehashed too many times.

No problem, I’m just wondering at the eagerness of people to rehash the whole arguments from other there in full in this thread as well :slight_smile:

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Whether or not you feel the shaking means something else, the developers have already made it clear about what the shaking text box means in the case of when a correct answer is entered for a kanji review. (I’ve only reposted what another user quoted from the FAQ).

Would it be a stretch to believe that the shaking text box can serve multiple purposes? Clearly if you input something that not allowable, such as kana in a meaning text input or attempt to submit a empty input such things are included to prevent obvious unintentional mistakes. I think everyone would complain if one could input a blank field only for it to be marked incorrect or if characters not permitted by the parameters of the answer (i.e., kana being allowed for the an English answer, etc.) could be accepted. I’m not sure how one interprets the shaking in this case to be up for one’s personal interpretation when the developers have mentioned how it’s used in this specific case.

I’d appreciate that if I’m going to be quoted for a rebuttal then you should at least quote the entire sentence because that is clearly an oversimplification of what I wrote.

This mainly refers to people who aren’t entirely set back by such issues. If one chooses to use scripts or not to remedy such issues it’s their prerogative. My comment never said anything about the effectiveness of the system with or without the aid of scripts. (FULL DISCLOSURE: I use scripts too)

Practice and reinforcement. I read all the time and many times it’s in front of native speakers. It surely stings when I make a mistake, but that correction helps to prevent me from making the same mistake over and over again. The color scheme and the study in a vacuum is indeed a crutch, but as a learner one has to start somewhere. Over time, with the help of guided correction (be it through this system or real life contexts) the learner develops a way to know how to predict which way to read single character vocabulary over kanji that are a part of multi-kanji compounds. Additionally the writing system tends to help to differentiate the two. Something WK lacks since it’s study in a vacuum. At least that’s how I have viewed it.


Shouldn’t the actual text be all violet? [Although the hard part is of course to find the word boundaries, which can lead to changing the readings all over once you get what belongs where.]


come on, you know what i was referring to.why make it a big issue if i cut the quote short? :wink:

In that case, I’d imagine that when you see 牛 on its own, with no context, your instinct would be to read it as うし, right? It wouldn’t make much sense to look at 牛 written down somewhere and exclaim: huh, ぎゅう! Because ぎゅう (written as 牛) doesn’t mean anything on its own.

Which is why, if your previous knowledge of kanji were to hinder you somehow in using WK, it would probably be by counterintuitively asking you to read 牛 on its own as ぎゅう in the kanji reading section. Because you already now that 牛 on its own is pronounced うし.

And if you do enter うし in the kanji reading section, the system won’t mark it as wrong, but will ask you instead to input another reading. Which means that this possible hindrance to users who already know some kanji is acknowledged and accounted for.

What reason could you have to unintentionally read 牛 on its own, with no context whatsoever, as ぎゅう? None, right? Maybe - if you have trouble figuring out which reading WK is asking for - you could try shifting your perspective to err on the side of “all the single kanji I see are vocab” (like you’re used to when reading native material), given that WK won’t penalize you for knowing a different reading of a kanji than the one they ask for.

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I use the ignore answer plugin for this. Works fucking great.
I’m well aware that 月 means moon, but when i put “month” in for the radical and i gotta wait another 2 weeks to try again, that shit pisses me off. lol.

Yay for scripts.


Just a little side note here, you could also add “month” as a synonym for that radical if you liked :wink:


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In my opinion adding more leeway will only hurt learning experience by promoting self delusion.
Now one answers ぎゅう for 牛 and thinks it is not wrong because, after all, he knows that the word for cow is うし but the prompt for word reading is so similar to the prompt for kanji reading. Next he will answer ぎゅう for 年 and think it is not wrong because, after all, he knows that 年 means year but the prompt for 年 it is just so similar to the prompt for 牛. What’s next?

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As far as I can tell the consensus in this thread is that newer users are saying it’s annoying and an issue, older users are saying it’s rarely ever an issue.

i.e. ITT: People who are new to WK haven’t mastered using WK.

Basically it comes down to training yourself to be very careful around purple backgrounds. Obviously if you’re level 20+ this is never going to be an issue for you anymore since you’ve been doing WK for dozens if not hundreds of hours by that point.

So, that’s my advice to new(er) members. Pay attention to purple backgrounds.

And my advice to older members: there’s nothing inherent about purple backgrounds that automatically mean that they are standalone words in a sentence vs parts of a compound kanji. This is something you have trained in yourself from hundreds of hours of using WK until the point where it has become second nature.

And yeah it says “vocabulary” right there but during reviews we’re in kanji reading mode not English reading mode.