Genki 3rd Edition


I am new to learning Japanese, but feeling optimistic and planning for the future. So much of my learning has been digitally natured thus far. I would like something tangible instead for grammar studies and found that a 3rd edition for Genki is alledged to be released in February.

I was hoping those experienced could weigh in on the updates they say they’re making.

Is it going to marginally change any disbelievers in it’s effectiveness for self-learning? Other than the switch for the audio files away from the CD format, do the updates change much? Should self-learners perhaps still look toward other options for grammar?

I don’t really want to wait until February or later (it says October 2020 for the answer key which confuses me) for something I can start learning now – or level 10, but that’s another discussion.


A brief glance suggests that they are reorganizing some of the lists and whatnot, and also revising the kind of vocabulary and conversations that appear (for instance, 喫茶店 is being removed in favor of カフェ, and a conversation about going to a travel agency is going to be changed because more people use online reservations now).

Those sound like nice goals, I guess. It’s always a little disconcerting when textbooks have references to really old culture things in them, but I’m not sure any of that would substantially change how the book feels.

At the same time, Japan does still have plenty of travel agencies and 喫茶店’s, so those actually feel a little strange to update.


While I find that the changes they’re making are very welcome to the textbook, the 2nd Edition remains perfectly adequate, especially if your main goal would be using it for grammar studies. I’ve found that Genki is a particularly great textbook for explaining grammatical concepts, especially noting exceptions and contexts. The dialogues are also fun; lots of spicy headcanons with Mary and Takeshi, for instance.

Genki also has practice exercises and an additional workbook sold separately, though it’d be extra beneficial if you have the answer keys for them too. Not a dealbreaker otherwise, though.


just a quick note: there is only one answer key for Genki (2nd edition) and it contains the answers to the textbooks and the workbooks!:blush:




Appreciate the guidance everyone :pray:

Sounds like the 2nd edition is the way to go if I want to use Genki, any updates with the 3rd are smaller than I thought.


Even without any changes being made, I don’t see why you couldn’t use Genki as it is, even as a self-learner. Yes it has its detractors, and it’s always a good idea to have additional supplemental resources regardless of the method you’re using, but I don’t think Genki is a bad choice at all. The updates seem to be mostly modernizing topics in the dialogue and vocabulary as @Leebo said. Unless those types of things matter to you, I see no reason why the current version would be a bad choice, unless you really don’t get on well with textbooks in general. You can also get all the audio online for free currently so if you don’t want to use a CD-ROM with the current version you can just use that.


Even if there were big changes, it is a long way until February! You can make big progress in that time so i’d go with the current edition!

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Hello! I was about to get the Genki book but I was wondering, what should I get now?
I see on amazon a bundle with 4 books, but I’m not sure what are the other two books. Are they the answer keys you talk about in your message?
Also, I guess there is no answer keys for the 3rd edition yet (or is it?) I’m having a hard time looking for what I should get. Do you still recommend the 2nd edition? Thanks!

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The other two books are workbooks, you can see example pages on the japantimes website.

Of course there will be minor improvements but the real reason that academic textbooks often have new editions is to avoid the competition with the used books market.


The answer key is available online for free. The October 2020 date is just for a print version. See the second list here: In that second list, the first link is answers to exercises in the textbook, and the second link is answers to exercises in the workbook (the filenames are in English, so if you hover over the links with a cursor you can work out what everything is, or you can just use Google Translate on the page).


I know this topic is old, but anyone knows where I can get a genki 1 third edition, workbook + textbook.

You can get it on Amazon Japan

Sadly, not shippable to my address.

How about CDJapan?
Edit: are you sure Amazon Japan doesn’t ship to your area?
Here’s a list of the countries they ship to

I bought a pair through

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The second edition (I own the workbook and textbook) is great already. Haven’t delved too far into it so far, but the only complaint I have is that it can be vague on information at times.

My assumption would be that the third edition will have minor touch-ups and modernization. I wouldn’t wait around for it when the second is out there

Genki 1 third edition is already out.