Expectations about daily time commitment for WK?

Hey, I’m new to WaniKani and trying to figure out what my WK study schedule will look like.

I know it’s widely advised to “pace yourself” etc, because the reviews can really pile up. But can anyone be more specific about this? Like how long would it take me to do my daily reviews after a couple months if I’m going at a pace of X new lessons per day? Can you give some examples of how much daily time commitment would really be required for various paces? Or does it just vary too much per person to say anything remotely helpful about this?



You roughly are gonna multiply what you do daily by 5 or 6 and that is gonna be roughly your daily review pile (probably more). So you should do no more than 20 lessons a day (the max I have seen recommended) but you’re gonna have 150 reviews daily at that pace. So if you don’t mind spending 30+ minutes doing just reviews a day then go for it, but I recommend 10-15 as a sweet spot.


I see, thanks for the quick reply!

So, on the aggressive side of things, you said 20 lessons a day might lead to ~150 reviews per day, which would probably take 30+ minutes for the reviews alone. And the 20 lessons would take about how long, for most people?

And so if you do 10-15 lessons a day, it would lead to 50-75 reviews a day (?), which would maybe only take 15-20 minutes for the reviews? And then however long the lessons take as well.

I do 15 a day and my daily stack is about 100-115 any given day. But I get things wrong and they get sent back to the Apprentice/Guru pile.


Ok thanks for sharing. I’m sure along with that, I will be able to figure out my own study time needs soon enough as I get a week or two into WK and see how long each lesson usually takes me etc.

Exactly the same here. Level 8.

OP, I’d say try to find 30 minutes (in total) every day. For review maybe dedicate half of that to a single sitting.

Lessons could be done in chunks throughout the day. Wanikani actually works great on a mobile browser, so you could do lessons/reviews when commuting, waiting in line somewhere, or when bored and want a break.


Hi there! :white_heart:
I’ll give you an example of my daily schedule (though I’m just going off the top of my head!)

I do my reviews in the morning; recently I’ve only been waking up with 30-40 items. I then do more reviews in the middle of the day… roughly around 30-35. I’ll do 10-15 lessons during this time as well. I’ll then do maybe 30-45 reviews at night and then stop.

I do my morning session on public transport. I only have a short amount of time (roughly 10 minutes). In the middle of the day I have around 30-60 minutes to do my reviews and lessons. But they usually don’t take that long at all unless I’ve let reviews pile up or I’m getting a lot of items back to enlighten/burn :sweat_smile:. At night I have 10-20 minutes.

At this pace I’m levelling up in exactly 14 days! Much less stressful than how I started off a year or so ago, I’m staying consistent and actually don’t really care about my level anymore. I was wishing I was going faster around level 4-8, but after that it just became routine and I realised that I’ll get where I want to be within a reasonable time no matter what.

Good luck & happy studying!


If you’re going full speed it’ll take you 1-2 hours every day

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Yeah the pace yourself is advice as when someone does all lessons they get really huge review pils in the hundreds overtime. So taking the lessons in small chunks and not doing all lessons that are available at once is a very good idea.

Doing 5-15 lessons per day is good for keeping things under control. If you start to feel overwhelmed then you can just do reviews only and no lessons for the day then try again the next time.

Since you are just at level 1 it wouldn’t hurt doing all the lessons that are given to you as only doing 15 per day at level 1 may bore you. So you just kind of need to feel what works for you and your schedule. Extra study exists so you can use that to your full advantage.

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It depends on your free time mainly

for me, I do one batch of reviews around noon when is my lunch break and another around 10 pm. If my apprentice is below 100 I do 5 lessons and I finish for the day.

usually I have 180 itens each day in review.

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It’ll depend heavily on your accuracy, but multiplying by 5 or 6 is obviously too low, except in the short term. For one thing there are 8 SRS stages for each item to pass through, so you’ll need to multiply by 8 at the very least and it can only go up from there.


To add to this, I am doing 10 lessons a day which gives me roughly 150 reviews. Getting to this point however will take a while, and at the lower levels you will probably want to do more daily lessons. I think I did all lessons immediately as they became available until some point during level 3. The important part is to pay attention to when things start to take too much time and then reduce the amount of lessons accordingly.


I’m a year in now and knocked out every item in my lessons as soon as I unlocked them. That was easy to handle in the first 15-20 levels for me as I already knew quite some Japanese before starting WK. Guess my reviews were around 150-200 then, but I would do reviews as soon as Tsurukame notified me. So I did several sessions a day for months. Maybe like 1h in total.

Now I do lessons infrequently, whenever and how much I feel like that day. Though I sometimes get 200-300 reviews lol (I’m getting really lazy at reviewing every item that day) and that can take me quite some time, like at least more than an hour, up to 2 (I get distracted easily lol thx ADHD)


Time commitment would be mostly influenced by the amount of lessons you do.

From my experience, if you are consistent and over a long time(when burns start showing up), you can expect to be on WaniKani for up to 30 minutes for every 5 lessons you do a day. A couple of factors that also effect the time commitment are like having decent accuracy, being in the right environment for learning, having a keyboard vs touch typing, and maybe having any scripts to ‘double check’ your answers.

How much you can actually get done is usually dictated by things outside of the app. Real life events, motivation, sleeping habits, etc. can all impact what you will be able to do.

I can’t speak for how much time going full speed would take unfortunately. I go at about 2 levels per month which is about half speed and usually takes up to 1 hour to get my lessons and reviews done. It’s also not too uncommon for me to skip days and have to spend more time catching up.



On the home page, you’ll see five boxes at the bottom: Apprentice, Guru, Master, Enlightened, and Burned.

Pay attention to the Apprentice box and pick a number that you don’t want to go above.


  • If you have a lot of free time, you can choose 100.
  • When then number in the Apprentice box:
    • Drops below 95 do another lesson (of 5 items)
    • Is above 95, do NOT do any more lessons.

This approach takes your accuracy into account and helps you avoid getting overwhelmed with reviews if you miss a week of study. Your journey here will be 1~3 years, missing a week is very likely.

To pick the right number for you, consider how much time you have available each day. If you only have around 10 minutes a day like me, then 30 is a good number to choose. I go one step further and limit myself to 1 lesson a day, which is fine since my 30 number is so low. This stops sudden spikes of reviews.


This is good advice, but the idea of missing a week gives me hives.

IMO, it’s not a daily TIME commitment. It’s a DAILY time commitment.

In other words, success is far more dependent on religiously doing at least a few dozen reviews every single day than it is on how many minutes or hours you allocate each day.

For the SRS to work best, you really want to get your available review count down to zero at least once every day. Real life happens, and some days you may only be able to do a small fraction of your available reviews, but that just makes the next few days harder to get to zero.

I don’t think I ever missed more than two days in a row entirely. If you’re going to Antarctica with no Wi-Fi for a week, stop doing lessons long before the trip and definitely take advantage of vacation mode.

The magic number of 100 apprentice items is to try to keep the total number of available reviews each day around 150. Apprentice items appear much more frequently than later stage items (apprentice 1-3 are guaranteed to show up every single day until they advance).

I used a slightly more refined approximation:

apprentice-items + guru-items / 10 <= 150

That kept my available reviews each day at around 150 on average. Since I answered the individual quizzes at 10 answers per minute on average, that meant I generally spent about 30-45 minutes each day doing my reviews (two quizzes, reading and meaning, for most items). There was also some time spent researching wrong answers and doing lessons, but I rarely spent more than an hour a day on Wanikani, usually just 30-45 minutes.

I believe that speed is typical (it took me three years to complete all my lessons).

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Actually, I don’t recommend slowing down on Lessons at all, if they are not too difficult for you. Though, if they are difficult, or somewhat difficult, limiting makes sense, but to say, Kanji and Vocabularies separately.

An objective gauge to help with difficulty, is Apprentice Count and Guru count. The notion has been around 100/500 for a while. (There was a by-type Apprentice / Guru count script as well.)

WaniKani doesn’t manage Review count very well, but a solution is simply ordering by SRS level / Level and doing more important ones first. Another solution is probably to cap and increase on demand, like 100 at a time. (Where the current solution is just, manual wrap-up, and gauge yourself.)

After all, Kanji around N4 might be helpful for getting started with reading, and that’s the only way to make Meaning make sense.

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I let things get out of control with too many reviews and too high an error rate so now I do at most 5 lessons a day instead of going flat out. The improved accuracy means I am going up a level about once a month which is about the same as when I went flat out.
If I do lessons I do them first thing then if I do 3 to 4 lessons a day I see them often enough that day to start to remember them.
I try to keep the number in Apprentice level relatively low - under 150 or I get too many reviews. I find about 50 reviews in a session is my limit or I start making too many mistakes. This takes me about half an hour. If I start making too many typos or other errors I stop the review session and do more later.
There is a holiday mode and if I know I can’t do any reviews for more than a day I use that to stop the reviews piling up. However, it is better to maintain the routine of doing at least some reviews every day and if you stop for too long you will probably forget a lot of the more recent items.


i do all my reviews and lessons (in batches of 2-5 times a day) every day and it takes me between one and two hours every day

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Wow, such an active community here. Thanks everyone for the input!

It seems like a lot of people do 30 to 60 minutes a day, with the more aggressive folks more like 2 hours.