DECEMBER 2018 JLPT N3 (Study Thread)

I tried to find a thread like this before posting a new one, but if it already exists I missed it. I’m planning on trying to take the N3 test in December and I figured that if any others here are also working towards the same goal we could study together here. Post about resources, ask for grammar clarifications, even practice using grammar and getting corrections etc. It could be useful.



I’ll post first :joy:

I really can’t work out the difference between うちに・間に・間


I’ve googled it extensively and I must be pretty slow because I’m having so much trouble comprehending how they are different, but I know there must be a difference because in the mock test in the book it asks me to choose between them and I failed so badly :sweat:


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With うちに in this case it is more “do X while Y is the case (limited time)” He/she cant climb mt fuji if they have left Japan.


Thanks but is mother having a nap not a limited time?

I think with うちに its more it would no longer be possible afterwards. With taking a nap it has less of a “now or never” feel because napping isnt so uncommon. with 間 its just stating a fact of “during” not that “if the mother were not napping, X wouldnt be possible.” Thats how I see it anyway.

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うち is closer in meaning to “within” while あいだ is closer to “during”


Subscribing to this thread. I will probably sign up for N3 in December if I can get my study routine working properly. (Passed N4 last December.)
What’s everyone using for study? Kanzen master? Sou Matome?

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間に can only be used when the action that follows is something that can happen in an instant.
When 間 is used, the action that follows occurs over an extended period of time.


I’m currently using Kanzen Master but I am considering getting Sou Matome as well. I have another book I bought in Japan called Speed Master. I only have grammar books though so I need to look into reading and listening practice etc.

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Sou Matome, Kanzen Master, Tobira, An Inregrated Aproach to Intermediate Japanese.

I use Sou Matome, considering getting Kanzen Master. It is not easy to get through even one of those positions in 5-6 months. I suggest to choose one and try to finish it before test. Sou Matome has 5 sections divided into books: Grammar, Kanji, Reading, Listening, Vocabulary. I finished Grammar, Reading and i am in the middle of Listening section, With that i tried N3 four days ago. I have mixed feelings after the test, not really sure how it went. Grammar wasn’t that hard, the real killer was reading and listening. You really need to read fast if you want to pass it.


I have the sou matome reading and listening books but haven’t committed to a regular study pattern with those. I’ve been watching videos form Attain’s N3 course and I plan to give the nihongo no mori N3 videos on youtube a good study.

I felt strange how うちに was the first grammar point to be asked. I also have bought Kanzen Master. Reading the first lesson, then taking the test and only getting 2 questions correct, I put that book back on my shelf. I just don’t get grammar.

I don’t feel ready for N3 yet.

Those end of chapter quizzes tend to focus on making sure you understand any of the caveats and connection rules (how the grammar connects to the surrounding words) so it’s important to thoroughly read all of them, even the ones that don’t appear in given example sentences. Often those things are written as little warnings on the side or below the main entry that gives an overview (I mostly have そうまとめ, but I think 新完全マスター is similar) so maybe they’re easy to gloss over.


Following this thread. Though December JLPT clashes with my university examinations while July JLPT in the middle of my summer break. I’m likely to take N3 next year in July. 1 year from now sounds like a very realistic goal.

Anyone here in a similar position as me?

To be honest I’m telling myself December to actually motivate me and make me study because I’m notorious for leaving everything to the last minute, but I feel like more realistically I’ll end up doing it in July.

A similar thing happened to me. I took an N3 grammar class when I was studying in Japan and the textbook was kanzen. I quit after the first 2 lessons thinking I couldn’t do it. When I look up the grammar explanations and looked in other N3 books now it’s not actually that bad. I think Kanzen is just really bad at explaining the grammar in a comprehensive way. I supplement all of my kanzen studies with extensive googling :joy:

Also didn’t help that the teacher of the class didn’t seem to understand that non-native speakers don’t just understand Japanese, that it requires some kind of explanation, and she kind of had this attitude that it made sense and was easy and she never explained anything properly.

I put N3 on the back burner for 2 years after that disaster of a class, and I’ve basically stagnated since then. It completely demotivated me.

I recommend looking at a different textbook because honestly I hate kanzen and the only reason I’m using it is because I owned it already for that class.

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Well I would be a first time JLPT N3 taker. I have yet to buy the books. I do aim to buy the SKM N3 Grammar and Reading books. And the drill N3 for practice later. I’m unclear regarding getting something for listening or just use resources online. Also I do plan to check some Vocab/Kanji lists to ensure i’ve everything in the bag since I am not expecting WK and my personal knowledge to cover everything, unlike the N4 test i had in July.

While I’d be waiting for the books to arrive, I’d be going through nihongonomori videos to get an idea of what to expect. That’s the plan for this July atleast.

Aren’t there listening books for そうまとめ and 新完全?

There are, but shipping the books is pretty expensive and I was fixated on only getting two of the five book set (for N3 and N2 each). I asked around and people rated their importance by Grammar > Reading > Listening > Kanji/Vocab. So I narrowed it down to those two.

The biggest thing for listening is to just consume native content that is interesting and comprehensible to you. Just constantly listen to stuff.

But the books are good because they get you ready for the specific style of listening questions on the exam. You only get one shot and knowing what to listen for is important.