Throttling reviews, or: "Help! I've fallen (behind), and I can't catch up!"

Hi! This is my first post on the community forums, which, to be brutally honest, I’ve avoided up to now because it’s generally been more distracting than helpful when I come to my WK dashboard page to get some serious studying done. :stuck_out_tongue:

Let me just start by saying, I love WK to death, and am happy to have purchased a lifetime membership. It’s done so much for me in the 27 levels I’ve risen through so far, and given me so much literary access to things I can now genuinely enjoy in my leisure time.

But this past spring, life has gotten SO busy for me, with both friends and myself orchestrating moves a quarter-way across the country, with very few resources (human and otherwise) between us to accomplish all that we need to get done, and to not drop the ball in my professional life, I’ve had to get extremely cut-throat about how I spend my time, and have been stuck doing errands of all sorts and general Adulting™, with very little time for extraneous leisure or relaxation time in the past three months (much less the spare time and energy to spend on WK!).

During that time, my reviews have piled up to a mountainous 1700+ items, because I was neglectful and didn’t realize how bad I’d be slipping on reviews back when this all started, and my current state of affairs is extremely disheartening, as there is no possible way I can ever climb back on top of that without micromanaging vacation mode. That said, barring any other solution, I probably will end up doing just that, because I’m willing to; I value the learning enough to put up with turning vacation mode off, doing a review session, and then immediately re-freezing my account. I’d have to do this for a long time even after conquering my 1700-large queue, as well, because due to the nature of freezing the entire SRS system at once, very few items at similar SRS levels would be staggered out from each other, and I get light-headed just thinking of how many of those 1700 items I’m going to have to send back to Apprentice I after all this time.

This is extremely stifling to the goal of actually getting any learning done. WK doesn’t have a way to be selective about what reviews you do, so it’s difficult for me to do any sort of divide-and-conquer strategy for this beast.

I realize that the onus of keeping up and pacing one’s studies is on the student, but users are human, and I feel that WK’s user experience could be VASTLY improved for those of us with busy lives (or indeed, lives with a changing amount of business!) if we had some ways to moderate the flow of reviews beyond the raw, uncaring machinations of the SRS system. Someone else has made a feature suggestion for a “moderate vacation mode,” which is along the lines of what I’d love to see as a solution to this, but any way to throttle the review-popping or sub-divide the reviews you’re offered in one sitting would be magnificent, and I feel like it’d seriously go a long way towards helping people that overwhelm themselves and get discouraged and quit, to… well, not quit!


I think other’s have climbed even harder review mountains than you. I’m not one of them, but I know it can be done. Just set a number of reviews to do each day, and don’t do any new lessons and in time you’ll again be on top of things.

Just give it a chance before giving up! :+1:


General guidelines for overcoming a mountain of reviews.
◦ Stop doing lessons (if you haven’t already)
◦ Choose a number of reviews to do each day, preferably split into at least 2 sessions (100-150 is a decent number, but it depends on how much time you have)
◦ Use a reorder script to organize the reviews, oldest first probably works best (If you do your reviews on mobile one of the apps should be able to do this)
◦ Use the wrap up button to end your session so you don’t leave things half completed
◦ Don’t worry about the numbers
◦ Work on it every day and you’ll overcome it eventually


Oh, for sure; I’m not trying to discount that others have conquered greater “heights,” nor claim that it’s, like, physically impossible. But different people always have different amounts of resources they can sink into things, and different priorities. I’ll certainly try my hardest to catch back up on this, and at worst, I’ll reset my level back or something to get this back under control, but it’s still pretty harsh on the mind to have to deal with that-- and not everyone is as dedicated and stubborn as I am :wink:

Well, being stubborn is in this case a gift I think as you’ll less inclined to giving up! Which I hope you don’t! That’s what’s made you’ve come this far so you can defo go further imo! Just don’ rush or go a too fast pace I guess as you life has no room for that. Just go at your own pace and you’ll gradually progress! ^>^

EDIT: I 100% agree with the request for extra tooling to make managing the review queue easier. That is really not up for debate. Don’t want to be the guy that gives dumb mental advice for real problems. Find some scripts and use them. There are plenty of review sorters out there.

== original ==
Think of it this way:

You’re not catching up to 1700 reviews. You’re catching up to 3 months, 90 days worth of missed work. The number is irrelevant, but if you were doing work those 90 days, your reviews would be at 0. The current number does not matter.

You should stop doing lessons so you don’t increase the load, then just put in the missed 90 days of work. That’s all.


I have actually been finding myself slowly chipping away at my reviews 100-200 items at a time, then turning on vacation mode until my next review session the following day, wash, rinse, repeat, until I get things manageable again. I realize that people will argue this will mess with this SRS timing, but… eh. For me, it has personally been a lot less disheartening to play catch up this way, and I don’t find my retention hurting that much. If anything, I’m hating WK a lot less than I was before I started doing this, and leaving myself more time to actually read native material, which is the whole point of WK.

If you’re serious about this, I’d recommend clearing your calendar for one weekend and do it all in one go. Then you’re back on track.


I’m amazed how often this is not suggested:
Turn on Anki Mode. You will breeze through reviews and catch up in no time. 100 reviews in 10 minutes would be a slow pace in this mode. The way I do it is to say out loud both reading and meaning every time I see the item. I also set meaning and reading back to back.

Only do this if it’s not detrimental to your retention.

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One sitting challenge? :thinking::smile:

(I did 500 reviews yesterday; not the same, I know, but I believe in you!)

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Assuming an average of 5 seconds per reading/meaning, that’s almost 5 hours of pure reviewing. Although it would probably be impossible to only spend 5 seconds each after a couple of hours with any decent accuracy.

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Indeed! It would be a legend! A myth! A story told throughout the ages to anyone in a similar position! Truly, a remarkable accomplishment. :wink:

Forgot to mention, I primarily review with Juken, which lets you swipe instead of type, which really speeds up reviews.

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