Can't progress at my own pace?

The most common complaint for level 1 is that WaniKani is too slow.
The most common complaint for level 7 is that the workload is too much.

This should tell you everything you need to know. Plan your lessons accordingly because they’ll be haunting you for at least the next 6 months.


I know too many people who used a variety of Anki decks in their effort to learn Japanese so that they could cram in as much new information as possible each day.

They would do 30-50 items per day, and they’d feel great for the first week or two. Then all of a sudden they have a day where they can’t quite find the time to get to Anki because real life happens. Suddenly they return to find they have 500+ or 1000+ reviews to do, their motivation completely dies, they stop SRS altogether and within days, 95% of what they “learned” is cleansed from their brains.

The reality is, you can only stuff so many things into your brain at once - and this is coming from someone who completed WK at nearly max speed and who went from near-zero to close to N2 reading level in a year. I constantly struggle to find a balance between pushing my brain to its maximum capacity and giving myself enough room to breathe that I don’t burn out entirely.

If you’re serious about learning Japanese, kanji recognition alone isn’t going to get you there. There are so many other things you’ll need to learn, and you’ll also want to be immersing yourself in native material as much as possible as soon as it begins to be comprehensible to you. Thus, the less time you can spend on WK while still learning something new everyday, the better off you’ll be. You’ll want those precious hours to learn grammar, vocabulary, get in some listening practice, read a book or a newspaper article, write a few sentences, etc. etc…

WK is designed to encourage long-term, habitual learning. The idea is that it’s better to learn a little bit everyday for a year than to learn a lot everyday for 2 weeks or 2 months and then burn out.

If after reading all that you still see no value in WK’s natural pace, then you should probably find another resource - there are lots of them out there. But I can tell you that WK worked extremely well for me, and I wouldn’t be at the reading level I am if not for making it a core part of my daily language learning routine.


From the unofficial FAQ:

Q: I already know all the kanji up through level X, can I skip ahead?

A: Right now there is no mechanism to skip levels, and there probably never will be. The method here at WaniKani uses mnemonics that are repeated throughout the levels, as well as a unique set of radicals. It also partially abstracts the on’yomi/kun’yomi readings of kanji (instead relying on which reading is most common), which is useful in being able to more easily guess vocabulary readings. So, even if you already know tons of kanji, by starting at level 1 you are training yourself on the mnemonics and radicals and the general WaniKani methods, which is invaluable to your future learning on this site. Advanced learners will just have to suck it up and repeat some material.


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Exactly! That only works for people with eidetic memory or those with great memory power.

For the average person such as me, brute force doesn’t work. Plus, it is so nice to have a system in place to remind you when you need your reviews. I like this so much.


Do it OP! Dooooo it! It’s the best mistake you’ll make!

And honestly, I’m going to keep repeating that mistake because it’s way more forgiving to recover on an SRS program than some of the crap I did with flashcards in the days before the internet/SRS took off. I’m not that old, but some of the complaints here really make me feel old.

I don’t want to know what you used to do with flashcard back in your day :flushed:

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Hey, I only passed out and drooled on a few stacks! If you phrase in such a misleading way people will start to think I’m some sort of watermelon or something >.>


does OP know about the scripts?

I only started using them level 10, I wish I knew about them before, so i could use back them self study quiz script every x hours.


Or stay sensitive and kind and cut toxic people out of your life. That’s my approach and it’s great. Since I started doing that, I’ve become much more relaxed and happy :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


I think you replied to the wrong person? Because I didn’t say anything about skipping.

Japanese has a high burnout-rate that promotes SRS-style programs for a reason. At least when you’re starting out, you can use other sources combined with WK. So that when you reach the point in Japanese where the burnout really kicks in, you’ll be in a much better position for when it hits.


You were the person I intended to reply to, and even though you didn’t come out and mention skipping anything, that’s the only way your analogy made any sort of sense to me. If someone is “prepared” for wanikani, that means that they already know a decent amount of kanji. And what other way is there to streamline wanikani for someone who already knows kanji than to allow them to skip those kanji?

Now if your point is that they should simply be able to set their own pace then they might as well just use an Anki deck. And they can do that for free.

そうです~か。:thinking: さぁ、仕方がないね…


Beware of burnouts. It is real.


Indeed they are

First, some ideas: Maybe WaniKani isn’t for you, but maybe - for the first few levels - you could use the extra-time-not-yet-needed-for-reviews you have to learn more about WaniKani, the community, book clubs, scripts and plugins, KaniWani, and basics of grammar. Trust me, the time you invest now in DoubleCheck script and KaniWani will give you dividends in the future.

Why WK might be not for you: Also, you mentioned that you don’t always have energy to work on things, and it probably means that SRS won’t be a good learning system for you, unless you build a habit of using it. Logging in every morning and every evening, or even better every morning, every lunchtime and every evening is important for WaniKani to work, otherwise your reviews queue will become unmanageable before you will hit the paid levels. And first few levels are short and simple precisely because in that way you can start building a habit out of it.

My experience of SRS and building a habit: When I started my WK journey, it took me maybe 5 minutes in the morning and 5 minutes in the evening, and it was extremely fun. I recently reached level 14, and to proceed with the same speed I spend 30 minutes in the morning and 30 minutes in the evening. Sometimes I feel too tired in the evenings, and spend only 15 minutes on WK, but then I suffer the consequences of extra load next morning. Without building a habit of doing WK twice a day, and never skipping a day, I couldn’t be where I am. And I bet that this is true for 95% of the people who finished the first 10 levels of WaniKani.

This is a marathon, not a sprint, and compared to other marathons, it’s a very long one.

Nah nothing so bad. They’ll only think you’re a raging perv.

Do some people consider this offensive? :thinking:


I don’t think Wanikani and any SRS based system is for you. SRS doesn’t allow you to do things at your own time. You might have to study the old fashioned way, without SRS