Levels moving more Quickly than my content


I am wondering if what I experience is normal. While I am working on a level, my user dashboard moves too quickly. For example, when I was still halfway through the vocabulary for level one, my dashboard moved to level 2, even though I was at least three days away from starting the radicals for level 2. The same thing happened to me with level 2-3, where my user dashboard moved to level 3 for a good 3-4 days before I was even done with level 2.

I would much prefer to see my dashboard reflect the kanji and radicals I’m currently being quizzed on. Is this how it’s supposed to function? If so, is there any way to keep it from switching before I’m done with a level?


1 Like


No, unless someone has made a userscript you can install. But even if one exists you will technically still level up when you have vocab left from your old level.

This page explains how the leveling process works.


Thanks seanblue.

Ok, that explains it. Although, I really don’t like it because it makes me feel even more lost. I don’t really care about what level I am officially on, just the ability to control what I see in my dashboard.


If you want a better overall view of what you’ve studied and where all those items are at wkstats might be what you’re after - you can configure the list in a number of ways to have it show what is important to you.


WK levels are based on kanji. Once you guru a kanji, you’ll unlock the vocabulary lessons for the associated words. But these vocab items don’t actually affect your level at all. By default they show up in the lesson queue before the next level’s items, so it can feel like you are ‘behind’.

A lot of users who want to level up as fast as possible use a script to move the kanji and radicals ahead of the vocab lessons. Since learning the kanji will make your level progress, this speeds up your progress quite a bit. But it can result in you having a backlog of vocabulary items that you never end up learning, so be very careful with this approach.

I believe that WK realized that most people only care about leveling up, so the dashboard is going to show your progress on radicals and kanji. By default, progress on vocab is hidden. If you want to see your progress on the vocab items you can look around and see if there is a user script that will allow that. Googling ‘user script to do X’ will typically take you to a WK forum post with someone who’s written that script. Scripts are installed via tampermonkey - if you’re not sure how to use tampermonkey you can google ‘WK how to install a user script’ and you should be able to find a guide pretty easily.


Thanks! That is good to know.

1 Like

Ok. Thanks for the information.

I had pieced together the part about the vocabulary not effecting your level. To me, it seems odd tho. I want to be forced to learn the vocab before progressing, and I’d rather learn that level.

I’ll maybe search for a script, thanks for the info on that and the explanation. For now, I probably will just leave it as is and make use of the wkstats page when I want to see all the information. That may actually be more helpful (than the dashboard) once I get used to looking at it.


It’s because WK is a Kanji learning site with the vocab being used to reinforce Kanji… I think that’s why. On WK, Kanji is first and foremost. That’s why you can use scripts to just do Radicals and Kanji without a need to touch the vocab.

1 Like

Ok. I basically have a game plan for what I’m going to do, but this comment interests me.

I’m open to interpretations here, but this seems a little strange. If the vocab is secondary, then what about all the additional pronunciations introduced (and sometimes additional meanings)? If you only do the Kanji part, you won’t be memorizing all of those additional pronunciations presenting in the vocab.


The vocab aren’t secondary in the sense of being less important than the kanji. They are secondary in the sense that they are selected to teach additional kanji readings and meanings rather than to teach the most common words. In other words, it’s still about the kanji and not about the words themselves.


I guess after reading you last comment, I should assume that the “vocab” section isn’t really different from the “kanji” section, but it’s just additional information.

I think it would help to understand why someone would want to complete levels and not do the vocab. If one was determined to actually learn the kanji, wouldn’t they want to know at least as much as they would learn from the vocab section?


i think you can learn vocab “on the way”, but you can’t do that with kanji. that’s why the focus is the kanji. if you already know the kanji, you can grasp the meaning of vocab by guessing its kanji mean, or just search it in a dictionary (jisho or wanikani itself). and not all vocab useful and necessary for everyone, but all the kanji is (that’s wanikani goal though).

actually i understand your concern. i actually want to burn all the vocab before learning new kanji. i think you just need to stop learn new kanji if you haven’t burn the vocab yet. but it will be taking a long time to leveling up.

1 Like

With the default WaniKani settings you have to learn all the vocab anyway. Even after you level up, WaniKani will give you lessons for the previous level’s vocab before the new level’s radicals or kanji. In this sense, the “leveling up” part is a bit arbitrary. And I think most users, like you, see value in the vocab and want to learn them.

As for the people who skip vocab using scripts, why would they want to? Very rarely, people decide that they want to learn the vocab on another platform instead of WaniKani even while using WaniKani for kanji. But more often, the people skipping vocab do so because all they see is leveling up and not learning. They’ve often lost site of the purpose of learning the kanji and just want to “win WaniKani” instead of actually learning Japanese. It’s unfortunate when that happens, but we do see it on the forums from time to time.


I see. Yes, I suppose there always those who just look at it as though it was nothing but a game.
Speaking as a relatively new-comer, I would suggest that creating a leveling bar for the vocab (at least by default) would send the message that completing the vocab is part of a level. I mean, the same way that you have to fill up the radical and the kanji bars with green.
Even if you move a person to the next level before those bars are full, they could at least be there if you select a previous level from the menu at the top.

I learned the wkstats page from another post here, and that is good enough for me (I’m not picky). But maybe you all might want to consider having the vocab “progress” be represented in some way. That would be helpful to people like me who also want to see that.

Thanks for you explanation. :slight_smile:

1 Like

The dashboard actually shows a lot more information than it used to about a month ago. So, for a long time before that, I got into the habit of just checking the wkstats page, and I’ve kept up that habit - hopefully not as neurotically as before - and it’s helpful…

Still, you’ll notice on the WKstats page that there are LOTS of vocab words on each level, and having ~110 vocab + the 30+ kanji + the ~10 radicals would appear messy. (btw, you can always check the menus for each level)

Eventually, you’ll probably notice that, 1) on the one hand you care about the levels, but 2) on the other hand, the WK leveling process and Guru, Master, Enlightened, levels are mainly about spacing out your learning and (hopefully) building knowledge (and SRS memory) over time.

1 Like

Visualizing vocab progression was brought up (on a thread here) some time ago. The unanimous answer was that it’s just too much. It would clutter the page, unnecessarily so since it’s not needed to level up.

So, can I take it that you represent those on WK that are most interested in playing it like a game, where you “level up?”

I don’t know why you would think that, but no. I actually like going through the vocabulary.
Having hundreds of vocab, of different lengths too, on the dashboard would clutter it.


1 Like

I was asking if that was so, not making the assumption.

The inference came from your assertion that showing vocab progression is unnecessary “since it’s not needed to level up.

I can see how that might be messy to look at. I think I’d find it helpful though, personally. Clearly I’m in the minority or it would have been the default long ago!

Thanks for your input.

Ah, so can I take it that you hate puppies? Not making an assumption, just asking. :wink:

From a product design perspective, it’s unclear to me what your imagined dashboard would have. Would you be prevented from leveling up until you’ve guru’d all the vocab from your current level? Or would you still level up, but the dashboard would show the vocab list from the previous level? Neither seems like a great approach.

For example, when I was still halfway through the vocabulary for level one, my dashboard moved to level 2, even though I was at least three days away from starting the radicals for level 2.

You weren’t three days away from the level 2 radicals though; you could have finished your entire lesson queue right then (not recommending this, but saying it’s possible – and some people might do it).

I would much prefer to see my dashboard reflect the kanji and radicals I’m currently being quizzed on.

If you really mean you want to see the items you’re being quizzed on, there will eventually be thousands of items that you’re being quizzed on – WK is a giant flash card deck. Which ones do you show? Maybe you mean you want to see the items in your lesson queue? That’s more reasonable; for me it was always a pleasant surprise when I finished the last vocab lesson from level N-1 and arrived at the first radical of my new level.

1 Like