Jlpt 2018! (Results are now online!)


Only just found this thread again (cuz I’m an idiot) and just skimmed through it, figured I’d add my two cents.

Took N3 in Cardiff on Sunday.

And I must say it was pure torture.
No seriously, the first part went fine (I’ll reiterate everyone who’s said this before, but WaniKani works and it saved me), I’m fairly confident I got 12 out of the first 14 right even xD

Fast forward 30 minutes, part 2. I struggled so hard. I realised after that it was probably the fact that I was super tired (drove down to Cardiff for 2 hours in the morning and didn’t eat properly) and so it was just hard for me to concentrate. At the end, as a lot of you have also said, I had too much reading and too little time and never got around to actually read the passages properly, so while I’m fairly confident a lot of these answers are right, I might just have not read it properly and got it wrong because of that.

Part 3 was, well, let’s say it was all I could do to understand what the passages were even about. I seriously struggled. I’m deaf and while it’s never been an issue before (and I have taken both the N5 and N4), because it takes my brain longer to understand what I hear, I really struggled to keep up (and again, I was super tired and that doesn’t help either). Listening has always been hard for me because I haven’t really found a good way to work on it yet and I knew I would struggle but that was seriously embarrassing.

Anyway, overall I’m fairly confident I could get the 95 points to pass (I think it’s 95 points), but I’m not sure I passed the listening, so if I fail, that will be why.

All in all, not a great experience, but I’m glad I did it anyway. I only started studying specifically for the N3 when I decided to take it, back in early October I think. Beforehand I was just generally keeping up what I knew because I never had enough time. So it was probably too much to ask for the prepare for the N3 in just a couple of months.

Regardless of the outcome though, next stop is N2 in a year’s time.

Also, a quick question, while I was waiting at the test site, I overhead someone talking about the exam expiring in 2 years or so. I’ve never heard anything about that. Not that I doubt that person, but does anyone know?


The scale argument doesn’t make sense, the TOEFL and IELTS have speaking sections and I’m pretty sure waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay more people end up needing to do one of those. Not that I’m complaining about not having to speak Japanese (with all the additional stress of being in a time limited testing environment with no second chances for that particular test day) either.

From the jlpt.jp FAQ:

Does the JLPT certificate expire at some point?

The JLPT certificate never expires. Results of the old test through 2009 also continue to be valid. However, companies and educational institutions that refer to test results sometimes set a time limit on the certificate. Please inquire at individual companies and educational institutions, as necessary.


Thanks for that, I did think it sounded strange :sweat_smile:


@Kyayna For some reason I read all that in a thick valleys accent. XD

How did you find the ancillary elements of writing in Cardiff in such as the strictness of the administrators, whether they gave time warnings, whether clocks were visible in the room, noise level, etc? I travel to Cardiff every December, and there were some issues with the Toronto administration so I’m considering writing it there next time.


You can read a lot of people’s experiences earlier in this thread, starting last Sunday afternoon or so.

If I can sum up, I think most of us felt pretty good on the vocab and language understanding section due to the effectiveness of WaniKani.

In the reading section, most of us felt pretty good until we ran out of time at the end. Reading speed is important.

The listening section made many of us feel crushed because it was hard to catch everything they said, and it’s important to catch everything they said. I will say, though, that unlike the other two sections, the listening section seemed to start harder and get easier toward the end. Of course easy/hard is subjective, but that was my experience.

I’m curious what your issues were with the Toronto administration. I didn’t have many issues with them apart from them getting a bit silly about watches, though I don’t actually wear a watch. In general, I thought it was reasonably well organized and administered.


Thanks for the summary, I’m moving more into native reading materials now, so hopefully this won’t be too much of an issue in a year’s time.

I tested in Toronto and I had no major issues with the administration. Our group got delayed somewhat, but other than that, we were given the full time for each section and regular updates. I honestly couldn’t ask for much else. I will agree though that it felt a bit unprofessional


No Valleys accent here, I’m sorry to disappoint :joy:

Well I found the organisation overall a bit lacking. So the queue for registration was halfway out the door (in the rain) and only when I got almost to the front did I realise there’s another queue for levels 5-3, which was a bit annoying.
But then after we were made wait for a good 30 minutes in a room, no chairs and quite crowded. (I understand that that was probably the only place available but still)

In terms of the exam itself, the proctord were quite funny. You could see the mental eye roll when the lady had to reread the “please turn your phone off” section.
The only time warning I ever got was a five minute warning in section two only.
There was a clock on the wall at the front of the room And we were allowed wrist watches. That being said, I think we were just lucky the room itself had a clock. Otherwise bad luck.
The weirdest thing to me was that they made us put the water bottles on the floor. Weren’t allowed to keep it on the table.

In terms of the listening, she actually tested it beforehand to make sure everyone could hear well, which was quite good. But again, because I am deaf, I’m not sure if that’s a reliable opinion. :joy:

Breaks were a bit of an issue because we only had like 10 minutes but we could only find one toilet, which made it a bit difficult to get everyone back on time.

Overall though it was fine. Found it quite easy to find the place and the staff were lovely as well. It’s a good 20 minute walk from town though if you wanted to do that as well.

Hope that (wall of text) helped :wink:


And you know that it wouldn’t take more labor hours than they already need? That was what I said. The point is that it would increase their overhead, not that it’s impossible to do.

The JLPT costs a certain amount and the economics of it work out the way they work out, and it would certainly cost more (money or time) to do speaking.

With regard to larger tests… if you have even more people taking it, then you have potentially more income overall and a bigger budget. I didn’t say JLPT was the biggest, I said “at the scale” they are at, you can’t just add speaking and not change something drastically.


Oh sure, I read your initial reply as “it’s not possible to do it at that scale and have it graded in a reasonable amount of time without an unreasonable amount of labour overhead” so I brought up the other tests. Adding speaking would obviously cost them more and would probably increase the registration fee, but if they wanted to do it, they could.


They could abandon batch mode and move to a flow model. Like getting your driver’s license in the US, there’s a written exam and a practical test. However, that would have to be staffed year-round and test consistency would be an issue. The “scaled score” thing would be practically impossible to do if the written portion were a small sample of questions drawn from a very large bank of approved questions. But they could do a graded interview.


I’ve taken the JLPT three times in Hokkaido (while still living in the same location), and all three were in different locations. This year, it was at the Hokkaido University campus. It was much easier to get to than the summer location, but the entire campus was a frozen slippery death trap thanks to the recent snowfall.

As for the exam itself (N2), I felt more confident than the first time I took N3 but not as confident as when I actually passed it haha. I Christmas tree’d like three of the readings. I did the last reading (information retrieval) first because I knew it was the only one I had a chance at passing.


Yeah, the grammar was easily the hardest part of the test for me.


I’m late to the party but I took N2 last week :slightly_smiling_face:
Like a bunch of other people here, I also did not know 和やか(なごやか)but after this exam I’ll definitely remember it from now on!

Before taking the exam, I did a lot of practice problems and generally scored well, but when I went to take this exam, I opened my book and couldn’t read most of the kanji on the first page :confounded:

I’m honestly not really sure how I did so I’ll looking forward to seeing the results next year! I have a strong feeling I failed, but N2 was a stretch for me to begin with and I’ll be happy to retry next year :raised_hands:


The brain is funny how we learn best from failure or not knowing.
I took the N4, and, despite going over the vocab うら a few times prior, could not recall ever seeing it before.
Now I know it’s a synonym for ‘behind’, but I guessed ‘front’ for…some reason (I also forgot おもて, I guess, so had I remembered, I would have guessed ‘behind’).

It’s most likely the only question I got wrong on the Character/Vocab section because every other question in that section I’m fairly confident about, for memory.

Now I will never forget うら=後ろ and 表=前.


I was also unsure about うら but ended up getting it right. I was also unsure about つつむ(guessed right) and completely lost on わかす, which ended up the only wrong answer in the first part (I think).


I was so happy about learning 包む and わかす. I picked them up in a few of the Memrise courses I use. I barely saw them elsewhere.
I think the only time I saw うら was also on Memrise, but just hadn’t seen it enough I guess.


The main issues I had with Toronto might have been just my room, but:

  1. The administrators were speaking in distractingly loud whispers at various points in the test.

  2. We didn’t start any section on time.

  3. Proctors were lax about people rifling through the question booklet prior to the start of each section, and about people going on their cell phones during breaks (even making calls). And although that didn’t directly affect me, it threw me off mentally a bit.


I don’t see an issue with going on your cell phone at break time. There’s no rules against that anywhere as far as I know. But opening the booklet before the test begins should be a yellow card warning.


The proctors specifically requested that we look through the question booklet before each section began to ensure that they had the correct number of pages and they were printed correctly (which I suppose had been a problem one year).

As far as using cell phones during breaks, the proctors asked us not to, but then didn’t object if anyone did, because as you say, it’s not really against the rules. I think they were more worried that a cell phone turned on during the break might stay on, and then ring or vibrate, and then they’d have to disqualify someone which they didn’t want to have to do.


Does anyone know if you get extra time in the exam if you have a learning disability?