Starting, but not quite trusting


In WaniKani, they say “a vocab” when referring to words. “Vocab” refers to a group of words, not to single words, so I’m concerned.

Also, there was a sentence, “三つも蚊に噛まれた。” That’s wrong Japanese. You don’t use the verb 噛む with mosquitoes. I learnt that many years ago when first studying Japanese, so I was surprised that such a mistake was made by the authors.

Is WaniKani really trustworthy? I haven’t really learnt anything here. I have pretty good Japanese skills, but want to review the basics, and then push my kanji ability up, but I’m wondering if this might be a waste of time.


Obviously everyone here believes it’s a good site, we were willing to pay for it after all. Give it a couple of levels and decide for yourself (to advance past level 3 you must be a paid member). It can be a little hard to judge to begin with since the site starts off slow, even level 3 is pretty slow. Eventually you end up with plenty to do and the advancement speed feels about right.


You have to keep in mind, the goal of WaniKani is teach you to recognize the most common kanji and the meanings and readings most commonly associated with them. It is not trying to teaching you anything else, even the vocab words included are mostly to help you remember the kanji and give you some context for their use.


I think you might want to look into some faster method if you’re just in for a refresh. WK will take you at least a year to finish, so the pace is probably too slow for someone just looking to refresh their skills. Perhaps some Memrise course or Anki deck for kanji would be better.


That’s merely to differentiate between radicals, kanji, and a vocab(ulary word). I wouldn’t get too picky with semantics in this case.

You’re possibly right regarding 蚊に噛まれた, I’d suggest sending a contact email to see whether it can/should be corrected rather than assuming you have the one and only truth. I believe the sentences were written by @mamimumason (I may be wrong though!) who is definitely “trustworthy” in terms of Japanese ability. There’s bound to be a few discrepancies in ~6000 custom sentences.


True, but here “vocab” is often used as a short version of “a vocabulary word”.

As for example sentences - as far as I know, most of them weren’t created by WaniKani staff, but taken from EDICT, same as example sentences at Which means, some of them might contain mistakes.

As for anything else - I agree with museraさん that you should finish free levels before making the final decision.
And also, keep in mind namste先輩’s advice too.



WK is not very suitable for a refreshment kanji course because you can’t skip levels. It’s mainly meant for beginners.


I asked my girlfriend, who is a native Japanese speaker, and she said that while she wouldn’t use that verb for mosquitoes, she said there are people who do.


I had thought that the context sentences are all taken from Manga and other sources? So they’re all real examples of Japanese sentences?

Anyway, I don’t personally pay much attention to them. WK is just for getting familiar with Kanji and their readings. You should be learning from various different sources. I’ve noticed, for example, that Kanji dictionaries often give slightly different definitions for certain Kanji, or prioritise a different meaning to the one WK does. Often Kanji themselves refer to a very broad ‘concept’ that is difficult to translate directly into English, so seeing definitions from other sources, and what vocab uses them, is an important way to actually learn what they mean.


WK is good, promise. :slight_smile:

I do always cringe when people say “vocabs,” though, and especially when people say “kanjis.” There’s probably nothing actually incorrect about it, but to me it always sounds like baby-talk or something.


What about ninjas?


Sounds right


According to this, I guess either kanji or kanjis is acceptable as plural:


aaaand “vocabs” is correct as well:

You learn new things every day


According to the above website, the plural for kanji is kaizzle and the plural for vocab is voizzle.


‘vocab’ and ‘vocabs’ is marked as incorrect on Mac.


They have cannons.


That site, which is not an official language site anyway, only says that “vocabs” is the plural for “vocab”.

What I’m saying is that WaniKani uses the word “vocab” incorrectly. “Vocab” is short for “vocabulary”, which means a group of words, not just one word. So “vocabs” does make sense as long as it’s used correctly. For example, I’m learning different Japanese vocabs. (i.e. I’m learning clothing vocab, transportation vocab, cooking vocab, etc.).

It comes across as quite unprofessional that WaniKani says something like, “This vocab means…” when they really mean, “This word means…”

Anyway, I’m looking for a better way to review the basics and push my skills up to the next level.


Like you, I have pretty good Japanese skills - I can read manga fluently (for the most), and light novels with a bit of effort. Getting through the first levels was an absolute drag, but the extra vocabulary has made it worth it for me.

I’d avise to take a look at the kanji levels - what level do you need to be before you start learning something completely new? Also, are you here just for kanji or would you like to learn vocabulary as well?

If you know all the kanji and vocabulary all the way to say, level 30, then you probably need something different. If (like me!) there’s new vocabulary startig from level 15, then I think it’s worth it even if the kanjis will be familiar.


We get it, you’re too awesome for the site, so don’t waste any more time explaining how Japanese (and English) works to us losers.