Checking card info during reviews

Is it okay to check card info data during the review session?

Sometimes I remember the meaning but not the reading. I check the card information after getting the reading correct. Once the card for the meaning comes am I supposed to fail it on purpose?

Sounds confusing sorry
For example:

Oh this means turtle.
Can’t remember the reading for this
Let me check the card info
Oh it’s かめ. I knew that.

Few seconds later

Well now I know the reading is かめ because I checked the card information earlier
Should I fail it on purpose?

I’m sure this was asked already. I’m a bad researcher.


If you continue doing this. Your problem will become very clear when you start reading but you don’t know how to read them properly. However, you feel like you know what it is but wait… how to read this?

I cheated the same way as you with Kitsun before and I found it really hard to read aloud a native material.

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I think you should fail it because you actually did fail in recalling the reading. Else you’ll destroy the whole point of the SRS.


If you didn’t remember, you didn’t fully know it. You were only familiar with it.

Reviews aren’t a grading system. They serve only to help the system determine if you need a little more practice on an item. Giving the system a false sense of whether you need more practice will only reduce how well you learn.


I used to make myself say the reading + meaning on a word before checking info since that would let me know to manually mark something wrong if needed.

Using a script for 1x1 mode (keep siblings together in kitsun) kind of sidesteps the issue since I can just finish a pair before checking any info I want. Personally I don’t find the “interleaving” all that valuable for the amount of effort it wastes, but some people swear by it.



I think Wanikani puts an item in the “answered correctly” pile only if you answer both questions correctly: reading and meaning. If either is wrong, the item comes up for review more often. If you input a correct answer because you have just seen it in the card info, you may improve the percentage value that appears on the top right corner of your review screen, but this will not affect your exposure to that item in the SRS. In other words: There is no need to fail an answer on purpose. The wrong answer you have already given is what really counts. Please feel free to correct me if my understanding of the SRS mechanism is not correct.

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No, you shouldn’t peep at the reading before it comes up in the review, that definitely defeats the purpose of the system.


The whole purpose of the system is to filter out which items need to be memorised more from those that are easy. That is, the point is that your ‘weak’ items appear more frequently so that you can learn them and then gradually space out so that you have to recall them after longer periods of time.
If you look up an item during a review, you’re essentially crippling yourself by pretending you know something when you don’t. The whole point is to allow yourself to fail so you know which cards you need to work on.

This is correct. Once you’ve failed either part of a card, you’ve told the SRS you need to see it again regardless of what happens with the other half.

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That’s what I did.

Yes. That’s also what I did.

For every card, I think of the meaning and reading in my head before answering. If I forget either one, regardless of what’s being asked, I intentionally fail the item.


i often check the cards during review, but: i only check them after having gotten both reading and meaning correct, or after failing one of them.

i think it’s important to be honest with yourself about this, otherwise you’re kind of sabotaging yourself

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I’m going to buck the trend and say no, you’re fine. The point of the reviews is to get a little study time in at periodic intervals, and that’s what you’re doing. If you’re really worried about it, don’t read the cards until after you’ve either failed one or know you’ve seen both questions (meaning and reading).

Most of them are written such that the ‘meaning’ info on the ‘more info’ doesn’t give away the other answer anyway. (but some do, I know)

Rereading a little closer:

I wouldn’t do that. Wait for the reading question to come up to see if you really DO know that and aren’t just lying to yourself.

Thanks everyone! Very informative

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