Question regarding speed

I do one lesson session per day (when available) of 14 (includes radicals and/or kanji) or 21 (pure vocab) and it takes me ~15 minutes to do my lessons. I did a batch of ~100 reviews in one sitting last night and it took me the length of the latest episode of Archer, almost to the second, to finish them, so around 24 minutes or so I guess?

I’d say, once you get used to WK and get more confident and faster at answering, it’ll dramatically reduce time you spend actively doing the reviews. jprspereira’s numbers don’t seem too far off for me.

According to wkstats I average just over 10 days per level at my current speed. I have no intention of speeding up but I may slow down in future.

By the current estimate though I’ll hit level 60 the same day I turn 31, so…

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8804 items/20 new items a day = 440 days.
8804 items/15 new items a day = 587 days.

Practical question: where can I check how many lessons I already took today? I mean the total of today sessions.


Just to remind you that it doesn’t mean you’ll be able to understand 86% of content :slight_smile: But yeah, get to level 30 and you’ll definitely feel that an enormous progress was made.

Well, as far as I know, Wk usually records only the items learned in the last session. There’s not really a place that directly gives you the total. What you can do is pay attention to the amount of lessons you do :slight_smile:

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I’m actually quite curious about your maths. You keep saying they don’t match reality, but could you just tell us what you expected?

Also, I hope you have sent your APIv2 key to @rfindley by now, because they are the most likely to be able to help you figure it out…

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If you have the Open Framework installed, you can paste the following in your Javascript console and press Enter:

	var day = new Date(;
	wkof.ItemData.get_items('assignments').then((items) => {
		var lessons = items.filter((item) => {
			if (!item.assignments) return false;
			var start = new Date(item.assignments.started_at);
			return start.getTime() === day.getTime();
		console.log('Lessons done on '+day.toDateString()+': ' + lessons.length)

If you want to check for any other day, change this:

	var day = new Date(;

to something like this:

	var day = new Date('Feb 12, 2016');

Sorry if you’ve already answered this, but the thread turned out quite long and I didnt want to read through all of it… :sweat_smile:
With the system you talked about, isn’t that speed impossible simply because WaniKani doesnt allow you to go that fast?
Assuming you always do your lessons at 9am, wouldnt you wait 12 hours between unlocking a new set of Radicals/Kanjis (since you unlock them at at 9pm) and every level would take ~8 days?

Part of the problem I think is that people assume the use of a script to reorder the lessons, or doing the vocabulary parallel with the kanji/skipping it, and not one after the other without much of an overlap.

I think my experience of always having a good number of lessons is because of the problem that both my level 3 and level 4 kanji got unlocked at the same time like @rfindley noticed.

Also, I still don’t quite get some of the suggestions (though I’m very appreciative that people share them) - do people advocate when going for daily efficiently (meaning as little amount of time spent on WK per day as possible) to go for all lessons at once as soon as they become available, or aim for the average number of daily new items that would produce a workload (lessons + reviews) that is manageable within that small amount of time?

Again, lets assume that no reorder script is muddling the equation. I’ll figure out further optimization with such scripts when I’ve figured the vanilla method.

Also I don’t care so much for doing actual calculations in my posts since like I’ve discussed, there are a lot of potential factors, some of them unforeseeable, that we can’t know beforehand (the calculations we do in the tread assume 100% accuracy and optimal routine for example), so the math won’t be accurately reflecting reality unless you are one of the single digit % people that have a lot of time and can strictly stick to an optimal routine and/or are a dedicated speedrunner. That’s why I’m also interested in hearing slower people that reached 60 give their input and share what their daily workload was and how they found out best to handle it for themselves.

I was also hoping that that user that posts simulation graphs would show up and give us a couple ones with 5/10/15/20 items per day and a reasonable margin of error, so we can get an idea of how bad the review count can get for each of those (or just post his excel sheets that I guess he uses as a template).

I just don’t think that for example the ~9.8 days level up time for 15 new items per day that the math produces is actually achievable for most users of WK, and in reality if we had site-wide statistics for everything, I think we would find out that the people that had that daily 15 item goal actually in the end got a lot slower days per level time. This is why I initially thought it’s impossible to get the ~1 year level 60 with 1 hour a day, I assumed that is only possible if people are doing all lessons immediately as they become available and somehow still managing to do all reviews immediately and maintain a near perfect accuracy on them, which means that their workload is the worst possible that the site can produce, and hence needing more than one hour per day. I guess when a person is amazing, they are amazing at absolutely every element at the same time, at any given time, indefinitely, huh?

This thread has proven that it is as least possible for some, yes.

I still think though that for the rest of the people that are struggling with little time/big workloads the idea should be to lighten the load, while most posts so far suggest doing the opposite (if I understand them correctly, but almost no one talks with concrete average per day numbers and what workloads they produce) - get as high a workload possible and just do as much of it as you can, which is not a good long term strategy at all in my opinion (especially from a psychology of learning/teaching methodology perspective), especially when starting out. At levels 30-40 - maybe its the best strategy, but not initially.

Not sure if I understood your question, but each normal level can be done in 6d20h. There are also 17 levels that can be done in 3d10h (if I counted them right). Are you having problems in understanding the intervals, is that it?

Well, the vanilla method has more variability than the reorder method, since the number of days until you do the lesson for the radicals will change based on the remaining amount of vocab from the previous level.
There will always be some vocab from the previous level, since, by definition of leveling up, you just guru’d their kanjis.
So, if you do 15 lessons per day on a level with few vocabs or 20 lessons per day on a level with more remaining vocab, your leveling speed (and thus your hability to get more lessons) may be the same, or even slower in the second case.
Again, this is why we keep recommending to use the reorder script, since it means that leveling speed will be directly correlated to the number of lesson per day and your accuracy. It’s not the case with the vanilla method.

To put it another way, with the vanilla method, assuming you can do on average, say 18 lessons a day like rfindley, you will eventually get the same average leveling speed they do, and the same completion time, but with variation of the amount of days per level.

So, your maths may very well be correct, and yet not match your observed leveling time.

So, I’m on my phone, and I can’t produce complexe simulations, but averaging everything, for a 90% accuracy rate (assuming you get enough lessons per day, etc). Also assuming only one review session per day.
A failed item has to be answered three additional times (technically it depends on its level, but lets go with that), so you have a 130% work load.
There are eight levels for items, then they disappear from your queue (burned), you your average load per day during the equilibrium phase (burning items, still adding items) is:
1.3lessonsperday8 (reviews) + lesson_per_day (the actual lessons).
So for 10 lessons a day, that’s 104 reviews per day on average plus 10 lessons.
Twice as much (obviously) for 20 items a day.

In practice, you would probably be slower, since one review session cannot give you 20 lessons a day on average, though…

You are probably talking about me :slight_smile:

I did some one-shot simulations, the days needed will vary a bit depending on what kind of errors you did. The errors are independent, so there are no leeches or items that are more problematic than others.

But I don’t really get what you are trying to achieve, ask if you want some other parameters :slight_smile:

[Click for graphs]

~90% accuracy, reviews twice per day, 10 lessons/d without reorder => 868 days to level 60, ~100 daily reviews

~90% accuracy, reviews twice per day, 15 lessons/d without reorder => 599 days to level 60, ~140 daily reviews


~90% accuracy, reviews twice per day, 20 lessons/d without reorder => 522 days to level 60, ~170 daily reviews


100% accuracy, reviews twice per day, 20 lessons/d without reorder => 466 days to level 60, ~150 daily reviews

~90% accuracy, reviews twice per day, max. lessons/d without reorder => 495 days to level 60, ~175 daily reviews, but more variance

And no guarantees, I just hacked the daily lesson feature into it.

[With reorder I think you can get everything to around 500, the delays come from radicals and kanji waiting behind large walls of vocab from new guru kanji. If you have a 90% accuracy but do reviews and lessons as often as possible you need ~420 days.]

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Wait, so to reach level 60 in one year, you need basically perfect accuracy on radicals, kanji or both?

At least for the items on the “critical path” you need high accuracy, but you can get the kanji you get along with the radicals wrong until you guru the radicals, and you can get radicals and kanji wrong worth 10% of each level (the radicals themselves don’t matter, but the kanji they unlock), and after guru you can basically fail as you like.

But the margin of error is not so big :slight_smile:

[Edit: if you mean the last with 420 days, with 90% you are likely to get 4 kanji wrong and be stuck for a while in each level.]

Thank you both @Naphthalene and @acm2010 for the replies and effort.

Very interesting. It seems that from a min/max perspective, a person should aim for at least 15 new items per day, probably mixing 15 and 20 since there will inevitably be times where he skips a day due to life, if he wants to maintain the speed that is.

One thing to clarify, with 15/20 new items a day, there will be days where you don’t have lessons, or not that many, do the graphs reflect that as well?

But if in the very end the reorder script doesn’t produce a difference with the vanilla method (if I understand correctly), why use it at all? Obviously people don’t care for the statistics on wkstats, but for what actually happens in real life.

Also, does using the reorder script means you do lessons on vocab with kanji you haven’t done the lesson for? Because I would assume that for a person who is slow/lacks time in the first place, this will slow him down even further (because its easier to do kanji->vocab than vocab->kanji lessons).

I’m not sure about the first question, but for the other two:

I can’t speak for everyone, but for me at least, the reorder script has two advantages:

  • stability: if I do the time critical item first, my leveling will always happen at the same rate (7 days, in my case). I can then spread the vocab items regularly throughout the week.
    Specifically, I (used to) do 30 lessons a day, if available. Upon leveling, I do all radicals + kanji (almost 30 items, usually) + 1-3 vocab items. Then 30 vocabs the next day, then up to 30 vocabs the third day (usually there isn’t that many left). Fourth day (technically 3.5th day), I unlock new lessons, I use the reorder script to do the kanjis first (less than 10) and complete up to 30. Fifth day, I usually finish my lessons. Sixth day: break! Seventh day: level up, rinse and repeat.
  • peace of mind! Sometimes, I only have five minutes for review, but I know I have time critical items in the mix. I just use the reorder script to do those items, and then wrap up the session.

Of course, both properties can be (and are) abused by people, but that’s not the fault of the script itself.

Nope. It just allows you to change the order of lessons (or reviews) you currently have. It does not allow you to access locked lessons.

OK, so what exactly do you reorder then? Isn’t the normal vanilla distribution exactly what you talk about (radicals+kanji critical items first, then vocab)?

No, vanilla is
Vocab from previous level -> radicals -> kanji -> vocab from current level.

Since you just brought a bunch of kanji to guru when you leveled, the pile of vocab from the previous level can be consequent.

The reorder script just pushes them back to appear with the rest of the vocab.

I’m still not absolutely sure what exactly the script accomplishes.

Do you mean that vanilla is radical->kanji 1st half->vocab->kanji 2nd half->new vocab.

And the script just does radical->kanji 1->kanji 2->all vocab?

The reorder script has several uses, you can also reorder the reviews to have the items come in reading-meaning pairs, for example.

The default lesson sorting for WK is “level then subject”, with reordering you can change this to just “subject” (rad>kan>voc; there are actually several options to sort). So normally you have to finish all the vocabulary from the previous level. Let’s say you get 60 vocabulary items and do 10 lessons per day, the you lose 6 days without doing anything for your new level.

I think @Naphthalene’s explanation is very clear, in your example the first and second half shouldn’t appear together. You do the sorting after you finished the second half of a level, so your default queue is “previous level vocabulary > radicals > kanji first half” and you can push the vocabulary back.

He explains it very clearly, and I still don’t get it :laughing:

I don’t understand the “pushing vocabulary back” part. Isn’t it already “pushed back” - they are always after the radicals and kanji anyway?

Even with the reorder, you still have to do the vocab of the old level after you have guru-ed the kanji and unlocked the next one, so where is the difference exactly?

And also what about my previous question:

Not really.

Vanilla mode (also known as the WK system) allows you these 3 options:

You can find this here:

Ascending level then subject: items from lower levels take priority. Once the lessons from these are done, you’ll get items in radicals => kanji => vocab order of your current level.
Shuffled: all your lessons get mixed (radicals/kanji/vocab). All random.
Ascending level then shuffled: items from lower levels take priority. Once the lessons from these are done, you’ll get items from your current level in a random order.

Now let’s use your level as an example.

You’ll level up to level 6 next. This means that you’ll guru’d all radicals and 90% of kanji. These last batch of kanji (from level 5) that trigger the leveling up will unlock new vocabulary (also from level 5). However, you’ll be level 6, which will unlock lvl 6 radicals, lvl 6 kanji from the 1st batch (i.e. you know all radicals already so you can learn them right away) and some lvl 6 vocabulary (i.e. you already know all kanji, so you can learn them right away).

What this means in practical terms.

Using vanilla mode: No matter which option you choose, you can’t start right away with the items from your current level only. For example, most people choose to learn all the radicals straight away after leveling up. In vanilla mode however, you’re obliged to do the lessons of the items you get first. Which means that if you wanted to learn the new radicals or kanji, the best way would be to select “Ascending level then subject” because this would allow you to get all radicals/kanji to appear in 1 row. However, this still forces you to learn all the unlocked vocabulary from the previous level, which tends to be 50 to 100 words. Is it a lot. People want flexibility, that’s what the reorder script offers.

Using the reorder script: With this script, you can select which items to learn in the lessons (current level vs previous levels & radicals vs kanji vs vocab & Group of vocab A vs group of vocab B*). This allows you to choose whatever you want to learn depending on your goals. The script also offers other cool tricks, but in order to avoid creating extra caos, I won’t mention them.

* The same thing can be used for radicals and kanji.

Not sure if that helped.

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