I passed the Level 3 JLPT with an 86% in December 2006. At this time, I was working for an eikaiwa and was not using Japanese at work. After changing jobs and working for public schools as an AET, I noticed a huge jump in my Japanese ability. Working in a Japanese environment is much better than just studying or using it in your personal life. Using a language at work and doing presentations can boost your abilities.

I took the exam at Nagoya Keizai University. There were so many Chinese people there! My exam room was probably 80% Chinese, 15% non-Chinese Asian, and 5% white or mixed-looking. Obviously the Chinese have a major advantage with Japanese thanks to their native writing system.

From what I saw in the Level 2 room, a lot of the Chinese had trouble with basic listening and instructions in Japanese. They couldn’t understand what the examiners were telling them. Speaking posed another problem for some. There is no speaking part on the exam, but during the break times, I chatted with a few of the Chinese people around me. They couldn’t maintain a basic conversation with me.

I took too much time on the grammar section, so I didn’t have enough time to finish the reading section. I guessed about five or six questions here. I didn’t read the passage. I just guessed the answers. For every other section, I’m happy I could confidently answer a lot of the questions. I think I’ll score between 60–80 per cent.


4 thoughts on “JLPT N2

  1. That's how it ever was… I took the 2kyuu in '04 and the environment was similar. I wouldn't even have taken it if it wasn't for kan-dai's curriculum.

    I learned to read and write Japanese in a classroom, but before that, I learned how to speak on the streets of Osaka. Wouldn't trade my Osaka-ben for 1-kkyu anyday.


  2. After four years in Japan I've never even heard about half of the expressions from my JLPT study. I hear you; the streets is where you learn to speak and take care of yourself.


  3. been all about the streets an never about the books my whole life, not that has got me that far ahead in life or anything, but i'll take being able to communicate verbally with friends over being able to read my way thru a newspaper anyday of the week.

    funny thing one of my friends told me about the test once, its actually easiser for chinese to pass the 1kyu/2kyu than the 3/4kyu…just on the kanji break alone. crazy. Hope u did well D, i'm livin vicariously:p


  4. I'm sure you're right. Japanese gets more similar to Chinese (in terms of writing) as your level goes up.

    And I heard that in one of my friend's advanced classes, the teacher would purposely put some passages in kana only, and make the students choose the appropriate kanji for the whole passage. He said Chinese, for some reason, had a lot of trouble with these exercises.


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