JCAT Alternatives? (help me :'D)

Hi, who else is big sad because of the JLPT cancellations? lol

Even if it wasn’t cancelled, I don’t know that I would have done it anyway considering I live in Alaska and the JLPT is not held in any cities here. The closest test location is Seattle, which is about a 3-hour flight from here. I don’t know that the travel cost and time would be worth it, as learning Japanese is currently just a hobby. I’m aware that there are other proficiency tests besides the JLPT, but the few that I know still have to be taken in person at a testing center.

That’s why JCAT was cool lol. Until I learned that as of April 2020 it is no longer free, nor for individual test taking. According to the site, prices range from $10 to $40, and the minimum number of people needed are 5 or 50 depending on the test version. UNLESS I’M READING IT WRONG. I am stupid, so.

I need assistance. Please. LOL. I guess my main two questions are:

  1. Is JCAT really no longer for individuals? I need confirmation from others because I’m prone to missing out on key information.
  2. What are some alternatives? Online Japanese proficiency tests that are reputable or official, or at least just not made by some weeb on BuzzFeed and titled “How Much Nihongo Do You Wakarimasu??? Desu!!” (idk, kill me)

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk, much appreciated.


Yes, she really is ;( :heart:


I sooo want to mark this the solution for the meme of it-


From the 申込方法 page

J-CATの申し込みはオンラインから行えますので、画面上部の「J-CATポータルへアクセス」から申し込んでください。なお、下記の方はJ-CATへの申し込みを行えません。 (The below-mentioned people cannot apply)

個人の方 (Individuals)


I had seen that and it sparked the now downward spiral of despair I’m currently…spiraling. Hey I guess I understand Japanese better than I thought ;D. Thank you


You can take the official practice tests that are the same format/length as the real exams. The PDF versions are free and the physical copies aren’t that much either. They have 2 different ones for each level.


But I remember reading somewhere, that practice tests are like a level or half-level easier than the actual test for given level, or sth around that.


I’m only one person so take this with a grain of salt, but both times I’ve taken the JLPT (N3 last December and N2 this December) they were easier than every practice test I’ve ever taken. I think it’s because practice tests tend to try and throw in every possible “NX Level Grammar” combination, while the actual tests use some patterns multiple times, and also throw in some easier questions too.


The only ‘problem’ I see with the practice tests is with the scoring. The actual tests aren’t just a ‘how many you got right out of how many total questions’ type system. Your actual grade could have been worse, or better, if able to use the actual scoring system.
I did pretty good on practice test, not great, but well enough I didn’t think the real thing would have been an issue. Then I took the real thing, which I was positive I did better on, and ended up narrowly failing.


But they’re made up of actual questions used in past exams so I’m not sure how that could be right.

Yes exactly that is the one thing I’d also point out. I’d say use the tests to get a general feel for the test and see how well you do overall rather than use it as a one-for-one.


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