More radicals

I just signed up for WaniKani and did lesson 1 radicals but it won’t let me move to lesson 2. Am I missing something?

See the FAQ.

I just finished my lessons. Why do I have to wait?

WaniKani has a very specific order. Each item builds upon a previous item, which means that in order to unlock new things you must know everything before it. Because of this, the beginning can be pretty slow. You’re building up a foundation.

In order for the SRS to be effective, you have to wait between reviews. Our goal is to make you review something right before you forget it, as this is effective for building strong memories.

The first set of radicals will probably take you 2-3 days to finish if you do your reviews on time. After this, you’ll unlock kanji. Then, the kanji should take around 2-3 days to complete. This adds up to about a week of study time to complete the first level.

By the time you reach Level 2 or Level 3, the speed will begin to pick up. This slow start is making sure that you’re ready for the later, more difficult materials. Think of it like a filter. If you don’t have the patience to get through the slower initial levels, maybe you don’t have the patience to learn all the kanji. Language learning is very long-term, after all.

Mate, make the most of it. When it picks up, you’ll be wishing it slowed down a bit at times :wink:


Got it. I read that but didn’t realize it applied if you did well. Thanks. I’ve been studying 80/20 Japanese and it is pretty good but I realized the Kanji methodology was slow. I’m pretty stoked about this site. My goal is 9 months to finish it. I have quite a bit of time.

It’s not physically possible to finish that fast, though if you had the absolute minimum level up time for every level (requiring you to do all critical reviews within an hour of them appearing, frequently get up in the middle of the night, etc, to not lose time) you can do it in just under a year.

1 Like

I thought it was just over a year?

With just a rough calculation, 45 “normal” levels times 6.83 days per level + 15 “short” levels times 3.42 days per level = about 359 days, and you can probably go just a little faster than that since I think there’s more than 15 short levels if you count 1 and 2.

Ah, I see. Well one year then. Thanks for the info.

So to finish all 60 would probably take a year and a half?

Oh, and by “finish” I mean “reach level 60.” But when you reach level 60, you still have lots of reviews left to do. Another 6 months probably.

Sweet. A year and a half. Dekimas!

They shortened some of the review wait times a few months ago, I think apprentice 2 and 3.

Hey, I love the rush of 3 digit reviews in the morning :scream: :angel:

1 Like

btw. how realistic is lvl60@1.5 years in your opinion?

You mean reaching level 60 in a year and a half, not finishing everything in a year and a half (which we described as basically the fastest possible pace and therefore highly unlikely)?

Reaching level 60 in that time is about 9 days per level, which I think most people don’t achieve simply because life gets in the way, but it’s not demanding from a scheduling perspective. The problem for most people is they just never get to level 60 at all.

Is that because most give up before that point?
Why do you think that is?
At my current rate I will be looking at 2.5 years, but that might be sooner since you mentioned the shorter levels, which I didn’t know about, But any faster and I can see myself burning out trying to fit it in around my life. Plus I want to cover other areas too while using this.

I see thanks. I think that’s a pace I can keep up with. I just wanted to know what pace is realistic so I don’t burned out or get frustrated too quickly.

There are also people who say they don’t need Lv60. About Lv30-40, it should be clear that grammar is even more important than Kanji. Some says they learn more Kanji from reading than WaniKani.

But for me, I am quite dependent on Kanji that I not only finishing Lv60, but also creating 20+ more level for myself to learn…

Of course, finishing in 1 year and a few months is doable, if you really want it.


Sticking with anything for a year is something few people do. The average person who gets interested in Japanese isn’t going to commit to trying to reach JLPT N1 level or beyond, which is the kind of kanji and vocab that comes up in the late levels.

Just to be clear, I put quotations around “short”, because the only thing that is shorter is the minimum time to level up, which is due to the fact that they don’t have many radicals to hold you back from reaching 90% of the level’s kanji within 4 days. They still have about the same amount of kanji and vocab. Going through those levels, mostly from level 46-60, at a fast pace is pretty grueling.

The most commonly used kanji are in the earlier levels so as you progress the usefulness of WK does tend to level off. There comes a point where learning in context (looking up words you come across when reading or listening) becomes feasible and I suspect a good proportion of users do not reach level 60 because that takes over.