Japanese Language Goals

After intensively studying Japanese for 6 months, Ive been finding it hard because I’ve never set goals or even a finish line for my studying, I’ve hit a wall now and am going to be writing study goals for day/week/month/year.

Just curious, what goals have you guys set out and what do you hope to achieve?


Really no goals at all? Just a really broad goal can sometimes be enough. Like sure you can do “i want to learn the tenses within a week, finish 5 genki chapters within a month and understand japanese text in a year”, but for me just “understanding anime and knowing a new language” was enough :slight_smile:

You should celebrate every advancement you make towards that goal… I might do too many posts like that, but hitting milestones is really exciting^^ Here is me doing just that litteraly 2 hours ago. Studying without having a goal makes your actions seem tedious and unnessesary. Try to find what motivated you to study for so long ^^


I just really wanna be able to read yuri manga raws because I’m as impatient as a person can be.


omg was that such a nerdy/dorky answer?


A daily goal I have is to go through 10 WaniKani lessons per day.

As for Japanese in general, I hope to have a decent understanding by the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games. As for what I mean as “decent” that’s up to interpretation :wink:


I work for a Japanese firm so the other half of the instruction manuals are a total mystery for me :smile:
also tv shows are soo funny and you have to have a decent jap level to able to operate tv remotes in Japan.
after all it is a long time goal for me to finally learn it.

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What I try to do is make tiered goals. So essentially starting from something very general (e.g., Speaking fluidly with out needing to use my native language as a crutch) then breaking down the milestones that need to be accomplished to reach that lofty general goal (e.g., learn 12,000 vocabulary words, learn to apply N4 grammar points in conversation correctly, etc.). You continue to make more specific goals until you have many accessible concrete goals that you can aim for while heading toward the more lofty goal. If along the way, you find your overall goal has changed, you need to evaluate how this affects the more accessible goals that you’re reaching for.

This is effective because it makes you really think about what you’re doing. Plus when you make tangible goals, those can be easily measured and kept track of over time. This helps to further motivate. If the goals in the lowest tier aren’t specific enough or accessible enough it’ll prove difficult to know how you’re doing so be sure to take the time to think things through.

Wish you the best.


You just need a strong goal, like understanding JAVs without having to continuously pause and look up things, really ruins the flow.


I’ve been twice to Japan and my first milestone is that I have to be able to talk, even slow, before I go again. And a pretty decent ability to read kanji, etc; so i still have a way to go. I promised that to myself last time, because i would like to check out the more rural places in japan.

The second also a nerdy one: i would like to read manga that has not been translated here.


My original goal when I started WK a year and a half ago was to take the JLPT 5 in December 2017 and reach WaniKani level 50 by 7/1/18, but crap hits the fan sometimes and I put everything in vacation mode last June. Wasn’t planning on taking such a long break but just started up again, resetting from level 12 down to level 4.

This isn’t my first break, I’ve taken several over the years for various reasons. It’s frustrating because it feels like stuff is slipping away but when I start again it all comes right back, and some vocabulary/grammar actually cements itself in my brain better after a break.

My new goal is to take the JLPT this coming December. For WK, my goal isn’t to reach a specific level, but to maintain a steady pace for the next year and see where I end up.

Whatever goals you make, don’t stress too much if the time comes and goes. Just pick up and start again and keep on keeping on.

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My goal is to play Ciel nosurge before its server goes down and that’s pretty much it.

All the other games and manga and books and dramas and language fluency milestones (broken out in the 2018 New Year’s resolution thread, Let‘s set our goals for the end of year 2018) and stuff that I’m working through along the way are just in service of that one objective.

I guess there’s the lifelong challenge that comes from continuously refining a skill, too, but first and foremost is playing a Vita VN that already has a fan translation.

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I have one broad goal and I set smaller goals to work towards it.

My big goal is to pass the JLPT N2 in December 2019. This is a strong goal that I’m motivated to work towards because I have a contact who will help me get a job in Japan if I pass this test.

My small goals to achieve that are:

  • do my WK reviews twice a day and 10-20 lessons per day depending on how I feel
  • finish a chapter of Tobira every 2 weeks
  • listen to podcasts in Japanese while I’m at work
  • listen to Japanese music when I feel like it
  • watch Terrace House with Japanese subtitles or no subtitles, then re-watch with English subtitles to see how much I understood

I find that setting a bunch of little goals like that helps keep me from getting burnt out. Ask yourself why you want to learn Japanese, and then ask yourself why that is, and keep asking until you really figure it out. For example if you say “because I want to get a job in Japan” then ask yourself “why do I want to get a job in Japan?” and so on. Then you’ll really be in touch with your motivations and be less likely to hit a wall.

I hope this helps :sunglasses:


When setting goals, I’d try to make sure they are “SMART” goals

In this sense, “becoming fluent” is not a “SMART” goal because it’s not very specific, and it’s hard to measure. I’m not going to analyze everyone’s goals, but @stargatekitten’s goals are examples of (at least mostly) very SMART goals =)


Reading manga. Everything else is secondary. I’ll never know enough for listening, speaking, or writing, and I certainly won’t have any use for reading Japanese in a professional or day-to-day context. So it’s all about manga.

(And reading other things related to my anime/manga hobby, but by and large much just manga.)

And I am reading manga in Japanese now, fairly successfully (though there’s a ton of room for improvement), so at least I know WK is very measurably moving me towards my goal.


I have the opportunity to stay in Japan for half a year in an exchange programme next year. By then I wish to be able to at least understand my peers.

Beside that I really want to be able to read manga. Most of my favourite manga’s don’t have an official English translation so I had to buy the original, Japanese one. Now they’re just sitting on my shelve gathering dust and I think that’s such a shame!

As for setting goals, I really recommend the technique @rmizuno uses! It’s more motivating than “I wanna read manga” when you’re stuck or hit a wall.

Good luck!


Short (or not so short) term goal: Being able to play JRPG’s. My grammar is already good enough for that, but I’m lacking in vocabulary. I can play games like Kingdom Hearts and Ace Attorney just fine, but it sucks to have to be using the dictionary all the time. I know that some games are way harder than others, though (looking at you, Shin Megami Tensei and Legend of Heroes).

Long term goal: Reading literature and academic texts in Japanese.


Have you done the math on that one? 10000 hours of listening in a year and a half? If you got 18 hours a day to spare to listen I guess you could do it :roll_eyes:


Well shit if I knew of or could find that amount of incremental comprehensible input I would do it myself

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My big overall goal is: go to Japan on a working holiday visa in 2019 and roam around working in a few different places.

The next biggest goal is: pass JLPT N4 this July. I need to knuckle down and actually study properly for this- I chose N4 because last year in October I took some practice N5 tests and passed them with 75%, and my studying has been much more consistent since then. It took me 190 days to do levels 1-5, going down to 63 for 6-9.
My grammar studies are lacking, and until literally yesterday I was putting of Tae Kim’s guide because I thought I would hate it. But now I’ve realised why it’s popular and widely used and it’s not painful at all!

So my study method goals now are:

  • Wanikani at least once a day, unless there is an actual event that means I cannot. Being tired is not an event.
  • 3 chapters of Tae Kim a week
  • 3 levels of LingoDeer a week

And my other goals, which I think, based on statistical data, are actually helping my study goals:

  • stay off refined sugar
  • jog 3 times a week

I would also like to write a comic in Japanese as writing practice, but I keep putting off starting :pensive:


I’ve been doing that exact same thing with Terrace House! (watching with Japanese subs, then English subs).
It’s really hard because spoken language is pretty different to what you see in manga (even slice-of-life), but it’s really fun and productive. Although it feels frustrating at times when it gets too hard and you feel awkward after not understanding an entire scene (this specially happens with the commentaries)…

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A) You don’t need that much to even attain N1. Like, something between a third and a half of that max.
B] 10,000 / ((365/2)+365) = roughly 18. Which means you would have to be studying 18 hours a day for that amount of practice. Probably not feasible