Prepare For JLPT

If you’re learning Japanese, you’ll probably have heard about the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT). In this five-part series, we will break down each test level, what they test you on, how they’re scored, and how to prepare for taking the exam. This is the first article, looking at the JLPT N5.

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Read on to learn more about what you need to know to pass the JLPT N5 exam!

An introduction to the JLPT

The JLPT has been around since 1984 and it is currently the most widely-taken Japanese language test in the world.
As well as acting as an indicator of language ability for Japanese employers hiring foreign workers, passing a JLPT exam is also valid for meeting the government’s 150-hour study requirement.

There are five levels of the JLPT, with N5 being the easiest level to pass and N1 being the most difficult. You do not have to pass a certain level before moving onto the next level i.e. you do not have to have passed N5 before you can do the N4 exam.

Type of JLPT exams






Each exam tests four things: reading comprehension, grammar, vocabulary, and listening.
In Japan, the exam is normally held twice a year – once in July and once in December. There are many overseas testing sites, but not all of them offer the chance to take the test twice a year.
The official JLPT website has the most updated information on where all the testing sites are and when they offer the chance to take the exam.
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JLPT certificates offer various advantages, ranging from recognition as academic credit and graduation certification at schools to preferential treatment at companies and acknowledgement of qualification in society.

The list can be used as a reference to help examinees and others get an idea of “what successful examinees of a particular level can do in Japanese.”

The Summary of Linguistic Competence Required for Each Level is introduced.

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