How to pass JLPT N5?

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In this blog, we will introduce:

  1. What is JLPT?
  2. Why learn JLPT N5?
  3. How long it will take to pass JLPT N5?
  4. How to pass JLPT N5?

What is JLPT?

JLPT stands for Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (日本語能力試験, Nihongo Nōryoku Shiken).

JLPT is an official recognised Japanese language proficiency certificate for non-native Japanese speakers. The first JLPT test started in 1984 with about 7,000 people over 15 countries took the exams. In 2018, there were over 1 million people took the JLPT test in 86 countries and areas worldwide. JLPT is now the largest Japanese language test in the world according to JAFA (The Japan Australia Friendship Association)

Below is the changes in number of JLPT examiness from the JLPT official website.

JLPT Examees 1984 - 2018
JLPT Examees 1984 – 2018

JLPT has five levels: N5 to N1 (easiest – hardest). You can find more details from the JLPT official website for each level. We will focus on JLPT N5 in this blog.

Why learn JLPT N5

If you want to learn Japanese as a skill for study or career, we strongly recommanded you take the JLPT test and start with the easies stage JLPT N5. Here are some benefits of learning JLPT N5:

  1. If you are a high school student you will get bonus points for ATAR. In Queensland, you will get 2 credit points. You can find more details at “How to get ATAR bonus points using your language details”
  2. If you are a job seeker JLPT certificate will give you the advantage over other applicants.
  3. If you want to get a payrise, many organisations especially government organisations pay extra money for the language skills. JLPT is one of the recognised certificates.
  4. If you want to study or work in Japan, JLPT will help you get the visa and smooth your life in Japan.
  5. If you just want to know your level of the Japanese language, JLPT is a very good system. It will help you learn the Japanese language in a better structured and professional way.

You can find the reasons of taking JLPT test as the chart below from JLPT official website:

The reasons of taking JLPT
The reasons of taking JLPT

If you just want to learn Japanese for a fun or a trip to Japan you do not need to learn JLPT N5, you can join our BBC Talk Japanese class.

How long it will take to pass JLPT N5?

The short answer is “it depents on you” because everyone is different.

Are there any official indicate about the study hours you need to pass JLPT N5? I checked with Mr Google and couldn’t find. However, there are some articles talking about it should be about 350-400 hours for people with Kanji knowledge and 325-600 hours if you do not have kanji knowledge.

From our experience, you can pass JLPT N5 between 100 – 200 class hours depending on how you follow our instructions. We have some students passed JLPT N5 in less than one year and some took about two years.

If you let us know your goal we can make a study plan to suit you. Our Japanese teacher has over 25 years teaching experience and have chosen the best textbooks with self-edited practice worksheets for our Japanese for Beginners – JLPT N5 class.

How to pass JLPT N5?

JLPT N5 has two parts: Language knowledge (Vocabulary & Grammar) and Listening.

The following table gives a summary of JLPT N5 pass marks.

JLPT N5 Points & Time
JLPT N5 Points & Time

To pass the JLPT N5 you need to get:

  • 80 points out of 180 total points (44.4%)
  • Minimum 38 points out of 120 points in language knowledge (31.6%)
  • Minimum 19 points out of 60 points in listening (31.6%)

There are two JLPT exams every year in Australia – July & December. In Brisbane, you can take the JLPT exam at Griffith University.

Our tips to pass JLPT N5:

  1. Have a plan: Talk with you experienced Japanese teacher to help you build a plan for your JLPT study.
  2. Forcus on the basics: There are too many information online. Forcus on the textbook and the homework given by the teacher. Study slowly but steadly.
  3. Memorise the hirakana & katakana: These are the fundamental of the Japanese language, same as the ABC of English. Ensure you can read and write hirakan and katakana without hesitation.
  4. Remember 800 vocabularies and 100 Kanji: It is hard to remember these words just by “memorising”, you also need to know how to use them. Our Japanese teacher has the tools to help you understand and use them in a smart way.
  5. Understand the grammar: This is the hardest part. Japanese grammar is very complicate. You do need a good teacher to help you understand and applicate the grammar points. Our Japanese teacher help you talk Japanese in a natural way.
  6. Do JLPT mock tests: The teacher will give you mock test along your study and find out your weakness for improvement. You will well prepared for the JLPT N5 test.
  7. Take it easy: Learning a language is a long journey. 10 minutes on everyday is better than 100 minutes on a day. Learning language is fun and mimic it like a Lyrebird.

We are now offering Zoom online lesson so you can join us even if you are not in Brisbane.

If you want to pass JLPT N5, contact us for a free consultation.

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