My Wanikani journey of 353 days, or what not to do

To level up as quickly as possible, all you need to do is consistently get the apprentice reviews for kanji and radicals of the current level right. It’s not that hard if you put your mind to it and put extra effort into them. You don’t have to remember them long term, just for 3.5 days, and then you can repeat with the next level.

To further demonstrate, here are my accuracy stats for the last month. As you see, it is possible to level even with really terrible accuracy stats, as long as you do well on the reviews that matter. Notice how I have high accuracy on the apprentice level radical and kanji reviews and terrible accuracy on everything else.

Overall: 91.9% (124/135)
Apprentice 1: 100.0% (7/7)
Apprentice 2: 100.0% (7/7)
Apprentice 3: 100.0% (9/9)
Apprentice 4: 100.0% (11/11)
Guru 1: 89.5% (17/19)
Guru 2: 91.3% (21/23)
Master: 88.5% (23/26)
Enlightened: 87.9% (29/33)

Overall: 89.5% (2481/2772)
Apprentice 1: 99.0% (303/306)
Apprentice 2: 99.4% (313/315)
Apprentice 3: 96.2% (357/371)
Apprentice 4: 95.9% (462/482)
Guru 1: 88.6% (441/498)
Guru 2: 76.7% (323/421)
Master: 80.7% (205/254)
Enlightened: 61.6% (77/125)

Overall: 77.2% (8830/11432)
Apprentice 1: 74.8% (1002/1340)
Apprentice 2: 87.0% (1171/1346)
Apprentice 3: 84.8% (1702/2006)
Apprentice 4: 83.8% (1748/2087)
Guru 1: 71.4% (1362/1908)
Guru 2: 69.9% (995/1424)
Master: 67.3% (565/839)
Enlightened: 59.1% (285/482)

Overall accuracy: 79.748% (11435/14339)

Yeah, for most of us normal people, we don’t get 100% on all the apprentice radicals and kanji. I’m perfectly fine with that. I can see how it is feasible if you study the apprentice level stuff more than just the once through that Wanikani gives you initially. I’ve found that the busier my life gets, the more competing time sinks I have, the more difficult it is to retain those initial apprentice level items. Sigh. My goal is to really get the kanji and vocabulary down. It was encouraging to me to hear that lvl 18 is where it starts slowing down on common vocabulary. It helps me define my goal.


The main reason I chose level 18 as the cutoff is because that’s when you learn 友達, which is a really common word.


I guess the most important lesson was the friends we made along the way


I still haven’t managed to make time for non-WK Japanese study in the last week, and WK is still kicking my ass, but I did take another crack at making a Japanese Christmas cake today, and the second try went a lot better.


I owe you my $80 then. Almost caught by current sale offer, though expect to hit lv60 around next June with currently being on monthly subscription. Thanks for a nice intel from the top! And of cource, congratulations with graduating :star2:


Yeah, I bought it before reading this.
Too bad, but on the other side I’m lucky enough I can live with it so… more love for Tofugu from my wallet.

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I unlocked the final lessons on Wanikani this evening. It’s crazy to think about how there will be no more lessons again ever. The rigors of the Wanikani schedule several times a day have been a constant presence in my life for nearly a year. It’s hard to believe it’s all over now.

All that’s left is to keep doing reviews until my subscription ends. Now that I’m no longer constantly heaping new lessons onto the pile, my Apprentice count should rapidly drop, although I don’t expect it to go to 0 since I’m constantly missing old reviews as well.


I did average about 8 days for the first 5 levels I think, but somewhere around level 6 or 7 I decided to ease up on my pace because the reviews piling up was becoming overwhelming and I don’t have a lot of time every day to dedicate to doing large sets of reviews. I also don’t like to let my reviews pile up for just one free day of the week either.

I find that I learn more by making mistakes, and I do make a lot of them on the most recent levels I’ve done but I don’t think it would make the level go much faster if I got them right all the time because I spread my lessons out so much. I like to take my time through the kanji on the level because rushing through my lessons makes it harder for me to keep new kanji straight and I also tend to struggle with similar meaning kanji because of English and its many synonyms - wk yells at me a lot for not being exact.

After I get the kanji in a level past Apprentice IV, I do the vocab lessons in larger chunks since I know their related kanji well by then and then speed through the next level’s radicals before slowing down again for the kanji.

I’m late to the party but well congratulations!!! :cake: :partying_face:
That’s a crazy speed run and your graph shows fantastic numbers.
that’s really some achievement.
Really like your idea of going fast then slow down.
Best of luck on the next chapter of your language learning journey.


Update: In case anyone wants a better idea of my Japanese ability after a year of Wanikani and other study, I took a bunch of JLPT practice tests yesterday to gauge my progress.

I’d say I’m N4 overall, but a N1 in kanji knowledge (thanks to WK) and an N5 in grammar.



“Expecting to look at the kanji once during the lessons and get them perfectly four hours later just doesn’t work.”

This is my biggest gripe with WaniKani. I wish you could flash card your lessons after they are complete.


You see all the hoops you have to go through in order to do that? I wish it was just built into the website. It is also a pain when I use several different devices and PC’s to study on.

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Mhh, it’s not that hard tbh. It’s basically just install tampermonkey and install the script. Takes about a minute. As long as you’re studying on a pc it’s really not a problem.

I do understand what you mean though. Imo Tofugu is slacking on WaniKani features in general.

Most of the time I am studying on my cell phone or a tablet. I would be interested is the browser stats for the users that access the website. I can’t imagine most users are using a PC.

If you don’t want to install anything (neither did I), you can just use Bish Bash Once, a customized version I made of the Bish Bash Bosh script that another forum user here created.

Well this is it. My subscription has finally expired. To be honest, I’m almost glad that I don’t have to spend so much time every day on Wanikani any more.

It’s crazy that even a month after hitting level 60, my reviews were still taking me an hour and twelve minutes a day on average, every day. A month after hitting level 60, my Apprentice count is still at 137. In fact, my Apprentice count has only dipped below 100 at all twice since April, back when I was still in the low levels. It’s really funny because a lot of people advocate keeping your Apprentice count below 100, but mine was never not above 100!

In case anyone was curious, here are my final accuracy stats. I’m amazed that I did a total of almost 107k reviews during my time here. That’s over 280 reviews per day on average, across more than a year.

Overall: 95.5% (4052/4243)
Apprentice 1: 98.0% (484/494)
Apprentice 2: 99.8% (486/487)
Apprentice 3: 99.4% (516/519)
Apprentice 4: 99.6% (561/563)
Guru 1: 94.8% (578/610)
Guru 2: 92.2% (571/619)
Master: 91.2% (505/554)
Enlightened: 88.4% (351/397)

Overall: 91.2% (17239/18905)
Apprentice 1: 95.1% (2093/2201)
Apprentice 2: 98.5% (2125/2158)
Apprentice 3: 97.4% (2458/2523)
Apprentice 4: 96.5% (2811/2913)
Guru 1: 90.4% (2806/3104)
Guru 2: 83.9% (2453/2923)
Master: 83.2% (1738/2089)
Enlightened: 76.0% (755/994)

Overall: 80.1% (67069/83767)
Apprentice 1: 77.8% (7394/9506)
Apprentice 2: 89.8% (8392/9346)
Apprentice 3: 86.5% (12250/14159)
Apprentice 4: 85.6% (12928/15108)
Guru 1: 74.7% (10892/14574)
Guru 2: 73.3% (8174/11145)
Master: 72.3% (5118/7080)
Enlightened: 67.4% (1921/2849)

Overall accuracy: 82.645% (88360/106915)

Anyway, so long and thanks for all the kanjis. I hope this post proves useful to future Japanese learners and Wanikani users.


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