What is your approximate number of reviews before you get a single item down (kanji,rads.,vocab.)

Hello all people of the internet, I am but an average user on the platform, and I’d like to know if you guys usually get your items (kanji, rads., vocab.) down first try and never look back, or do you get it wrong a few times before having it stick. I often find myself in the latter, and no matter how thoroughly i look at a kanji when it pops up for the first time I have about a 15-20% chance of not remembering it at all. But after a couple mess ups I got it down. Is this how your experience is with newly unlocked items, or do you take a different approach than just eating incorrect answers? I personally don’t have an issue with how i need to get wrong a lot, but I’m still interested in everyone else’s ways.


I tend to misremember items that are in the Guru → Master → Enlightened → Burned path so to cheat the system I read Japanese books or articles.


I do 20 lessons per day in the morning and I usually get about 70-80% on the first review. The items I miss will spend an extra review or two in apprentice before i get them down.

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Hello and welcome!

For me it depends on the item.
As for radicals, I usually have no problem getting them correct right away. Maybe because the are still quite simple to this point.

The Kanji are different. Of course there are Kanji I knew before starting with WaniKani, they are no problem at all. But for some of the new Kanji I have a similar problem as you do. When they appear the day after the lesson, I look at them and can’t remember the reading or it’s mnemonic at all. After failing them one or two times it becomes better and they start to stick. Until my current level this applies to maybe three or four Kanji per level. Maybe this will become worse with the more difficult and similar looking Kanji.

As for Vocab, the words I already knew the meaning of beforehand and learned the reading now due to WaniKani, they are usually no problem at all. But a Hand full of others just won’t stay in my head AT ALL. I carry some of my Vocab in my reviews still coming from some early levels. For example Level 4 一本気, unlocked early February, still Guru:

As you can see I get the reading wrong when it’s time for master or enlightenment. Everytime it becomes いっぽんき instead of いっぽんぎ. And even the meaning is kind of difficult for me. Let’s see if I get it right the next time…
Luckily this is more of an exception and not usual.

What I am trying to say is: Don’t mind making mistakes. They’re part of the learning process in my opinion. Some things stick right ahead, some others take time. In the end you’ll make progress either way as long as you keep at it.


i usually remember it just by the shape at first and use the mnemonic later on down the line. i feel like that’s weird

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I usually get kanjis right at first try because I pay extra attention when doing kanji lessons, since that’s really what wanikani is about and kanjis are what make you advance through the levels. Vocabulary on the other hand has a failure rate similar to yours for the first times.
As of radicals, they are generally fairly easy to remember, again I usually pay extra attention to radical lessons since you want them burned in your memory in order to read kanji.

Try dedicating more time to kanji and less to vocabulary when doing your lessons.

Yup, I always got some item that failed even on each stage Apprentice - Guru - Master - Enlightened. For new lesson, I always do quiz around 1 hour after the lesson (not too quick after lesson & not too short before review). For items that I failed miserably, I look deeper into the cause: similar kanji, obscure meaning, mnemonic doesn’t stick. What I do is relearn, if it doesn’t work I’ll add different mnemonic or easier synonym or native word. And leech training as regularly as possible.

But you know, I often just too lazy. I just let failed item come again and again until I can feel the boredom & hatred. It works but painfully. :rofl:

I used to binge my lessons and relying on myself failing a number of items to spread out their reviewing timings and debundle them so to speak. ^^ I didn’t spend that much time on my lessons, but rather relied on the SRS to give me enough extra tries to nail the items down the road.

The items that I fail more than a couple of times initially typically needs extra work however. That means returning to the lessons page, self-study quiz, leech training etc.

Eventually, the items should stick long-term. :slight_smile:


OP if you’re curious about your own stats, there is this web app that provides info on your success & failure rate at the different SRS levels.

My stats

Well, I haven’t had any new lessons in over a month now, so not sure how that impacts my numbers…:eyes:


Looks like I’ve got really bad long term memory :expressionless:

I do decently on radicals and some of the most obvious vocabulary, but I would often get kanji and some vocabulary wrong several times before it started to stick. It wasn’t really affecting my level up speed (I do 10 lessons a day, except for radicals, which I do in one batch, and since I started doing this, I’ve never run out of lessons to do), but I did start to worry that I would mess up and end up with a couple days where I had no new lessons, so I downloaded the self-study quiz userscript, and now I test myself with that after every batch of new lessons. It turned out to be just what I needed to actually learn the kanji after the first lesson instead of failing them several times before the meaning/reading starts to stick for me. It doesn’t take much time to run through the quiz a couple times after doing my lessons, and it massively benefits my learning to do so.

This is quite interesting, thanks for sharing.
I guess “From A1 to A1” basically means answering wrong in the first review phase after a lesson. Then that’s the my answer to this thread: Approx. 15% wrong answers at the first try.

I have no burned items yet, that’s why it say’s 100%…


I think it’s pretty common for the burn reviews to be lower accuracy. But, you might also wanna do more immersion learning to get more items to stick.

SRS is great as you get to learn loads of items in a short span of time. But, the learning you do tends to be “shallow”. That’s why you need exposure to reading, listening, watching and gaming. Once you have an “in the wild” example in your mind of an item, they tend to stick.

Good luck! You can get there! ^>^



This is really cool! And I agree with @ekg. Once I see or hear the word in the wild, it tends to stick a lot better.

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that’s what i did for most of my levels so far: do the lessons relatively quickly, then let the srs do its thing and just repeat items until they stick. it’s probably the intended use of WK ^^

however, starting at about level 10, i found things got more difficult. i was failing more items, and for longer. something wasn’t working anymore for me.

so i’ve become much more thorough with my lessons. i spend more time making sure i get an mnemonic (not necessarily the one WK proposes), reading the sample sentences, comparing similar items. in the summary at the end of lessons i quickly go over the items learned. and i do another quick review about 1 hour after the lessons.

it takes a lot more time to do lessons: maybe 2 minutes per item. but i have ample free time, so this works well for me. and my accuracy has gone up again ^^

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I usually get them right the first reviews but I miss some in the coming rounds when the times get longer like from Guru to master.

I do this too. :smiley:

After a while, you can get a sense for how long you need to spend on each item before diminishing returns kick in.

One of the good parts about failing early is that it shows you where the trouble was. Was it the reading? The meaning? Did part of the mnemonic not stick?

You also start to get a feel for which ones are going to give you trouble.


For me, I find that as long as I pay really close attention to the mnemonics and repeat meanings (and readings) over and over in my head while I’m doing lessons and reviews, they typically stick and I can remember them every time until I get them as enlightened reviews, then it seems to be pretty 50/50 on whether I truly know them or not. I do my lessons in batches of ten, though, and it always seems like there’s one or two that fly over my head and I need to have them go through the apprentice levels several times before I remember them and they get to guru. After that, its an excruciating process to actually remember them because if something doesn’t stick for me the first time, chances are I won’t remember it lol

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Now you’ll get it right. Whenever you complain to this board about a particular item, you’ll remember it next time :slight_smile:

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Hehe, I guess you’re right.