WaniKani and the JLPT

Hey everybody,

What are your thoughts on the relationship between WK and the JLPT?

If a persons goal is to pass the N2, do you think WK with supplemental listening exercises is enough?

Up to what point do you think you can rely just on WK to get you through the JLPT?

From what I understand WK is good for kanji, but is short on the vocabulary.


You won’t pass any JLPT if all you have is WaniKani. You need grammar first.


I’m with Belthazar. Even N5 would be simply impossible without some other form of studying. Language (especially Japanese) is a lot more than just words.


^ Just mark this as the solution.


I have a somewhat different take on it, but I agree with the others, too.

For me, my kanji and vocabulary was lacking SO badly. I spent years studying Japanese in university, but we didn’t have nearly enough reading exercise, and not until way later (when most senior students who couldn’t afford study abroad had terrible reading skills) did we start reading things to understand them in a Japanese context.

So, I had very good grammar skills, but my kanji (and regular) vocabulary was absolute garbo.

I recently took the JLPT N3, and I was surprised by how helpful Wanikani was. There were so many words I could read, and also so many words I couldn’t read but knew would come up later in WK. I know for a fact that if it weren’t for WK, I would have completely bombed the test.

So, I think it depends on where you’re coming from. If you already have grammar under your belt, and your kanji is garbo, then WK is vital to getting through the JLPT.


Thanks, that was helpful!

1 Like

I agree and should’ve made that clear in my initial post. What I was really asking if how useful WK is for the JLPT.

It’s very useful for Kanji that you will find in the JLPT, but the JLPT is more than just knowing kanji.

As has already been stated you will need to supplement this with other forms of study to accomodate for the reading, listening and grammar.


WK can most certainly easily get you through the Kanji and Vocabulary portion of the JLPT!
I nailed the vocab section when I took the N4. It really, really helped. It was exceptionally helpful.

However, that means that grammar and listening still need work as you need to pass all sections to pass the JLPT.

On wkstats you will find a great overview of what percentage of kanji for a given JLPT level you have covered based on your current WaniKani level. I find that overview quite helpful.

I think WaniKani will be all you need kanji-wise for the JLPT, at least up to N2. For vocab, reading, grammar and listenening, you would have to get use other resources.

1 Like

I don’t think you can rely on WK for the vocab section that much. For kanji I agree 100%, but for vocab they often ask for specific nuances, like what kind of speech 演説 means (and at least I don’t really learn nuances from WK). Often times they ask hiragana-only words (which can be really tricky) or even katakana words.
I would maybe even say that WK vocab is more useful for the reading section than for the vocab section on the JLPT.


Yeah, WK’s style of just providing a few English glosses becomes progressively less useful the further you go in the JLPT. When you get to N2 and N1, the options for a word will all “make sense” with whatever glosses you know, but you have to know the specific nuances of the Japanese word.


Thanks all, exactly the type of info I was looking for.

Wish there was a WK for vocab!

This topic was automatically closed 365 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.