26 September 2017 @ 02:36 am
i’ve almost finished what i have of 2 JLPT N1-level anime now (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure; From the New World) and i’m a bit disappointed. while i’ve improved my understanding of various “grammar points”, i feel like i haven’t learnt many words at all from either of them because the new vocabulary repeats itself too little. i mean, when a word like, i don’t know, “molotov cocktail” only shows up twice in two series, i just don’t end up learning it. and that’s the problem with most of the unknown vocabulary i’m seeing here.

all the JLPT levels up until now were easy: watch around 60 episodes in a given level on animelon and you'll have gotten to the point where you can move on to the next level. but N1 isn't working that way so far. it might be time to move on to series specifically entrenched in certain themes i don’t have much vocabulary in, ex. doctor series for medical vocabulary, and to ignore the overall level of the series as long as i still have a good vocabulary gap...

anyway, i really have a lot of respect for people who make it to N1 level: considering how infrequent some of these words / grammar pieces appear, that's a LOT of language use!
23 August 2017 @ 08:29 am
JLPT N2 Score: July 2nd, 2017

Vocab, Grammar: 27 / 60 (19 to pass)
Reading: 23 / 60 (19 to pass)
Listening: 30 / 60 (19 to pass)
Overall: 80 / 180 (90 to pass)
Reference Grade: B
= I failed by 10 points.

Thoughts: I've already improved so much in the 2 months since I took it that it'd be impossible to fail if I were to take it again in December (also next time I'll bring some kind of medicine so I don't give up halfway through due to eye pain again), but considering what a stressful, huge pain it is I'll only take it again if I can't find a part-time job during my exchange year in Sendai without it. I'm assuming that if I can get a part-time job, on top of having "Japanese-class grades" I can show to potential employers, the bosses at the part-time workplace can be my references that can "prove" I know Japanese even without me having taken the JLPT / having my finished degree. I don't know what you guys think / know about that.

Unrelated but I also just beat my first game in Japanese (.hack//infection, a PS2 game) where I actually understood what was going on the whole time: I understood nearly 100% of the dialogue, 95% of the in-game forum posts and Emails, 80-90% of the item names/descriptions. So if you're at around N2 level I recommend it (I don't think it's any good for learning from context because there's not enough context clues, but it's good for reviewing — most of it's voice-acted too).
03 July 2017 @ 11:45 am
yesterday i took the JLPT (N2 level). my advice / experience:

• study so that you could clearly pass N1 if you're taking N2. in particular, make sure you can understand formal nonfiction (newspaper articles, modern-history texts, business-anything) in both spoken and written form EASILY. you want to be at the point where you can VERY EASILY read all kinds of NONFICTION, adult books in japanese. you should use an app like "mazii dict" (dictionary where you can easily read news blurbs inside it) or "mondo" (purely intended for reading news) to read some news articles every day.

• instead of (panicking and) re-reading the long reading pieces, read and answer each question SLOWLY. once slowly saves time and comprehension, versus thrice fast.

• work on memorization techniques for when listening to conversations. just youtube "memory champion" etc and you'll see what i mean. you can reread text, you can't replay audio.

• if watching anime to learn, i'd say watch it once with japanese subs (looking everything up) and then once without subs. i didn't realize how much i was still relying on subs for comprehension of high-level stuff until the long listening came. (vlogs, "let's learn japanese grammar!" and other everyday stuff i'm understanding just fine without subs).

• it's very important to remember, on the JLPT there's basically NO CONTEXT for anything. obviously this makes things a lot harder than normal reading/listening.
——— my study / experience under the cut! )
17 June 2017 @ 11:13 am
hey guys! here's my progress after 1 1/2 years of learning japanese. i'm just barely at N2 level. i highlighted next to the kanji meanings i don't know (not the words i don't know, ONLY the kanji). i wrote the wrong year so ignore that, they're all from 2017.

i think this thing is pretty fun to do, you can really check back and see a huge jump in progress in the future. wanna try it?! highlight whatever you want, grammar, vocabulary, kanji, katakana letters... i just took photos then added highlights using an app.