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Japanese proficiency tests

Last updated Jan 10, 2023

The JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test) tests reading comprehension, grammar, and listening ability. The levels of the test range, in increasing difficulty, from N5 to N1. There is no good reason to take levels N5, N4, or N3. On the other hand, N2, or occasionally N1, may be required for employment by a Japanese firm in Japan. I took and passed N1 in December of 2015.

Less frequently discussed is the masochistic Kanji Kentei, a comprehensive kanji examination the highest level of which covers the correct stroke order, usage, and pronunciation of more than 6000 kanji. Even native speakers generally cannot pass higher levels of the Kentei without studying a lot. This video (no subtitles) is about the first non-Japanese person to pass the highest level of the Kentei.