Brief survey on learning Japanese with internet resources, and possible interviews

EDIT: The survey is now closed. Thank you to everyone who responded! You can see the summary of results here: Japanese Online Learning Survey
I will report back soon with the full results/discussion of my study for those interested.

Hello everyone! I’m running a survey about online resources and methods for learning Japanese, and learners’ perceptions of them. I’m aiming to use the results as part of my university senior capstone project about learning Japanese as a second language using the internet. If there is interest, I can also report back on the findings.

The questions are multiple-choice with some write-in options and the entire survey should only take 5-10 minutes to complete. Anyone 18+ who has used at least one internet resource (like WaniKani) to aid in learning Japanese as a second/foreign language is eligible to take the survey. The survey will remain open for 1 week.

Google Forms survey link: (Google account not required)

I’ve also included a questionnaire with open-ended questions here:
They are similar to the survey questions in content but have unlimited space to answer and include more broad questions about studying in general, not only online.

Thank you all for your assistance!


I did it! Let’s help, everyone


Hey! I really wanted to help out and take the survey but after going over the questions I’m not certain you’d be able to get proper data that you can then later use for comparison. Feel free to ignore these recommendations but I thought these might be helpful changes to make before more people answer:

  1. More concrete timeframes
  2. Separating Japanese skill into listening, speaking, reading and grammar
  3. Popular resources

For example:
Question: Approximately how long have you been studying Japanese?
As I’m certain you know people have times where they can devote to studying fully or times when they can’t study at all. If I had to choose an answer it would be that I’ve been “studying” Japanese for 10+ years. In reality I’ve been studying (e.g. language lessons with a teacher, university lessons, daily independent study) for only about 4 years. I’d include one question asking how many years ago the person first started studying and then a second question to clarify how many years etc the person has actively studied for in total.
Question: How would you describe your current Japanese level?
Tying into the previous question I’d answer “beginner”. My listening and speaking skills were my strongest suit when I studied at university but now it’s grammar and kanji instead. In good conscience I can’t rate myself as intermediate since I know that some of my skills are worse than others. Maybe asking people to rate their individual skills would give you interesting points to compare - e.g. people with good listening skills use videos for studying etc.
Question: Approximately how many hours per week do you spend online learning or studying Japanese?
This is too broad of a timeframe and I’d ask something more measurable, like how many hours per week/in the last 6 months. And since people might’ve been studying for years and now no longer need to spend that much time studying you could also ask if the time spent on studying has changed in time and if yes then how (e.g. I’m studying more now than when I started etc)
Question: Which of the following internet resources do you find the most helpful for progressing with Japanese?
I’d break these down for all the different skills - listening, reading, grammar, speaking. It adds a lot more questions but also gives you much better answers. I’d also add a separate question where you list different popular resources (.e.g WaniKani, Duolingo etc) and ask which of these the student has used in the past, which they are currently using and which of these they rate as the one that helped with their studies the most. This should give you data on which popular resources people usually started out with (e.g. Duolingo) and which they actually found the most helpful and stuck with in the longterm.

I apologize for the small essay and like I said, feel free to ignore. :sweat_smile: I just thought that this would give you much more interesting data and I’d love to see the results when you’ve finished analyzing it. :slight_smile:


Thank you for the responses so far, and thank you Momoni for your suggestions! I agree with your points and wish my advisor had caught some of those things. I can’t change this specific survey now but when I do my interviews I will definitely ask for details on what you have suggested so that I can get more of a detailed breakdown. I will keep this in mind for any future projects/surveys and as a potential limitation when I do my write-up about the survey.


Done! Depending on when you plan to do the interviews, I’d be up for that as well.

Thank you! I plan to do the interviews over the next week, either online over Zoom/other videoconferencing app, or you could email the responses to the questions if more convenient.

wholeheartedly agree with this.

Also it would be better to be more consistent with the scales.
Sometimes you have 4 options (not at all, somewhat, moderate, very much), but at other times you use 5. Making all of the questions with these kind of degree-choices into a similar scale would allow you to more accurately compare answers between questions!

(also in my head, some and moderate are the same thing…)

Also wouldn’t it be beneficial to add a question for those who don’t rely so much on online resources as to scope out some of the reasons for that as well?

Your survey design is saturated with the assumption that online resources are a beneficial thing. It’s obvious that you want the results to show that online resources are marvelous and beneficial for all. But this means you are leading the respondent on with the way you’ve set up the questions. There is no way a respondent could express not enjoying a resource, or not finding benefit in a resource → Your survey becomes heavily biased. To be somewhat more credible, I’d recommend adding opposite questions as well, e.g.
Which is the most enjoyable —> Which is the least enjoyable
Which is the most beneficial → Least beneficial

((Have you seen the “survey” Trump announced on FB, when he still had access to it? The gist of it was that he asked how had he been doing so far as president, and the options were something like this: 1) Good, 2) very good 3) Great!
Talk about getting the result you want.))

You could also create a rank-question where respondents have to choose the 3 most enjoyable resources in order (to avoid bias, first ask them to choose the best one. Only after that ask them for the second best one out of the remaining options).

Good luck with your studies.


Hi Anji,
Thank you for your comments. I see your point with the ranking scales and moderate vs. some. I do disagree with your conclusion that there is no way to express discontent with online resources in the survey. There are questions for the respondents to express negatives of online resources and options to add their own, as well as the questions about effect on motivation and overall satisfaction including neutral, positive, and negative options. The reason the survey does not include questions for those not using online resources is because this is a study specifically about those who do use online resources at least some of the time; not because it is assumed that learning online is good or better than not doing so.


You know there could be those, who use online resources only “some of the time” even though they’d be willing to put in more time IF some aspects or services online were more X or less Y.

(I wrote that the survey design is biased because you consistently use positive adjectives in the questions themselves.)

I’ll correct myself then: You have one question about the drawbacks (-) to using online resources (OR) in ones studies. But alas! Respondents can only select one option, even though on the opposite question (“reason for using OR”, which pretty much translates into a question about the benefits (+) of OR) they are allowed to choose multiple items. = biased toward preferring positive result.

I would love to fill in this questionnaire, but I’m currently very busy and will likely forget. Can someone tag me in like 12 hours or something? Thanks!

Discourse can do that if you set a bookmark with a time :slight_smile:

You can find that when you click on the three dots at the bottom of the post.


That’s probably one of my favorite features.

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:flushed: I have been on this forum for like 3 years how have I not noticed this

Also I have been on this forum for three years :flushed:



Done!! I could do an interview if you are interested. Just let me know.

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Submitted survey!

I usually only use online sources for kanji learning. I put that under reading. I didn’t know how to classify that.

Oh I forgot listening!! I listen to online radio too
Also available to do more in-depth answers if you need more people.

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This made me self-reflect on my language learning journey so far. Living in the middle of nowhere in a rural area, internet apps have greatly increased my language ability. (Good luck finding a native Japanese speaker where I live). Just having an internet connection allowed me to start learning Japanese as a third/fourth language.

While I feel some questions could benefit from some deeper answers, I guess that’s what the interviews are for. I’d be up for an interview if you need more people too. :slight_smile:

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Also did the survey! I read quite a lot of manga on bookwalker etc…I presumed that would come under ebooks but wasn’t 100%. It’s a a bit of a weird one in general - as an activity I don’t really differentiate reading physical books/manga in Japanese from digital versions - it just depends on what I happen to be reading at the time -so my estimate of time spent was very approximate. However having things available digitally does make them a lot easier to access so perhaps that’s why they are listed?

Anyway, any follow up needed feel free to reach out :slight_smile:

done. Although I don’t really think the question Approximately how long have you been studying Japanese? can give objective data.
A guy who studied for 6 months 3 hours a day most likely going to have a higher level compared with the one who just dabbles with language occasionally for 3+ years.

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Just so you know, I’m 16 and therefore had to choose the 18-25 age range. I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of people here are in their teens too (because anime and stuff) so this age range could be more representative of something like 14-25.