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The New Japanese- Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)

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Page 1: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

The New Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)

Page 2: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)


What sort of test is the JLPT?

4 key points of the new JLPT

New test FAQs

More questions?

Page 3: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

• The test evaluates and certifies Japanese-language proficiency of non-native speakers.

• It has over 20 years of history since its establishment in 1984.

• The test has been jointly conducted by the Japan Foundation and Japan Educational Exchanges and Services (JEES).

What sort of test is the JLPT?

Page 4: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Why has the JLPT been revised?

・  The number of Japanese-language learners has increased.

・  Their reasons for learning and using the language have become more diverse.



The old JLPT until 2009 was reviewed and revised.

It became the new JLPT from 2010.

Page 5: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

1. Increased focus on communicative competence2. The number of levels was increased to 5; examinees can select a more suitable level

3. The scoring method was revised to ensure

more accurate measurement of Japanese-

language proficiency

4. What you can do in Japanese is easily visualized

4 key points of the new JLPT

Page 6: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

1 . Increased focus on communicative competence

① Knowledge of the Japanese language: How much an applicant knows about the Japanese language, including vocabulary and grammar ② Competence: How well an applicant makes use of language knowledge in practical communication

Japanese-language proficiencythat the new JLPT measures

Language Knowledge(Vocabulary/Grammar)

Reading Listening

Measured through 3 test sections

Page 7: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

2 . The number of levels was increased to 5; examinees can select a more suitable level

Level Summary of Linguistic Competence Required for Each Level

N1 The ability to understand Japanese used in a variety of circumstances

N2The ability to understand Japanese used in everyday situations and in a variety of circumstances to a certain degree

N3 The ability to understand Japanese used in everyday situations to a certain degree

N4 The ability to understand basic Japanese

N5 The ability to understand some basic Japanese

Page 8: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Level Corresponding Levels of New and Old Tests

N1Approximately the same level as the old Level 1 test, but designed to measure slightly more advanced abilities

N2 Approximately the same level as the old Level 2 test

N3 Positioned at a level bridging the old Level 2 and

Level 3 tests

N4 Approximately the same level as the old Level 3 test

N5 Approximately the same level as the old Level 4 test

Newly established

Page 9: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

3. The scoring method was revised to ensure more accurate measurement of Japanese-language proficiencyOld JLPT scores: Raw scores Calculated by the number of correctly answered questionsNew JLPT scores: Scaled scores  ・ The same competency is given the same number of points in each test  ・ The same scale is always used to calculate scores for the same-level test

* The highest degree of fairness can be maintained, as scaled scores never fluctuate based on the difficulty level of tests * Scaled scores can indicate an applicant's proficiency more accurately than raw scores do

Page 10: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Example: A-san’s test results in raw scores and scaled scores

A-san took N2 level tests in July as well as in December.Below are his Listening test results.

N2 Listening July December( More difficult than July test)

The number of correctly answered questions

10 out of


10 out of

20 Score per item X   Number of correctly answered questions =  Raw scores

2 x 10= 20

2 x 10= 20

Scaled scores 20 25

Not sure if A-san’s listening

ability improved.

Clear that A-san’s listening

ability improved.

※The data shown is only an example to explain the new JLPT scoring system, not for actual score calculation.

Both numbers are the same, 10.

Page 11: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

4 . What you can do in Japanese is easily visualized

Listening I can understand the general content when I hear announcements at school, work or public places.

SpeakingI can speak in detail of my hopes and experience at interviews such as for a job or part-time work.

ReadingI can understand the content of newspaper or magazine articles about topics I am interested in.

WritingI can write letters or emails to express my emotions such as appreciation or apology.

Japanese-Language Proficiency Test “Can-do” List (tentative name) will be released by March 2011.


Page 12: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

We can better understand the test results in terms ofpractical Japanese-language use.

Test result

Passed “N?” JLPT ”Can-do” List

I see. Those who passed the “N ?” test THOUGHT they could

do these activities with the Japanese language in study,

work and daily life.

With the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test “Can-do” list,

Page 13: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Level Test Sections and Test Times

N1 Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar) ・ Reading110 min

Listening60 min

N2 Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar) ・ Reading105 min

Listening50 min

N3Language Knowledge

(Vocabulary)30 min

Language Knowledge (Grammar) ・ Reading

70 min

Listening40 min

N4Language Knowledge

(Vocabulary)30 min

Language Knowledge (Grammar) ・ Reading

60 min

Listening35 min

N5Language Knowledge

(Vocabulary)25 min

Language Knowledge (Grammar) ・ Reading 50 min

Listening30 min

Q How will the test sections and times change?

New test FAQs

Page 14: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q How should I decide which test level to take?

A - See the table “Summary of Linguistic Competence Required for Each Level” - See the table “Corresponding Levels of New and Old Tests”   - See the book “Nihongo Nouryoku Shiken Mondairei-Shuu” (New Japanese-Language Proficiency Test Sample Questions) on our official website

Page 15: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q How can I receive test results?

・ Scores are indicated by scaled scores.

・ Listening section proportion increased from 1:4 to 1:3.

Level Scoring Sections Range of Scores


Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)



0~ 60

0~ 60

0~ 60Total Score 0~ 180


Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar) ・



0~ 1200~ 60

Total Score 0~ 180

Page 16: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

In test In test results        

Level Test Sections Scoring SectionsRange of



Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar) ・ Reading

Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)


Reading 0~60Listening Listening 0~60


Language Knowledge (Vocabulary)

Language Knowledge(Vocabulary/Grammar)


Language Knowledge (Grammar)・ Reading Reading 0~60

Listening Listening 0~60


Language Knowledge (Vocabulary) Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

・ Reading0~120Language Knowledge (Grammar)

・ Reading

Listening Listening 0~60

Corresponding Sections

Page 17: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q How is pass or fail determined?

Old JLPT New JLPTTotal Score

Level 1: more than 70 %

Level 2-4: more than

60 %

①total score needs to be at or above the point required for passing

② score in each scoring section needs to be at or above the minimum point required for passing

A  ・ You need to take all test sections.   ・ You need to fulfill both and ① ② below.

・ Failure to exceed the minimum point for any scoring section will result in a determination of fail for the entire test, even if your total score is above the minimum acceptable total score.・ Minimum acceptable scores for the total and for each scoring section will be announced in September 2010 for N1, N2 and N3. For N4 and N5, they will be announced in March 2011.

Page 18: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q Can I pass by studying the way I have been doing? Should I change the way I study?

A ・ The way you have been studying will still work.

   ・ Please note that the new JLPT places importance      not only on knowledge of the Japanese language      but also on competence in using the knowledge in practical communication.

   ・ Make use of “Mondairei-Shuu.” These sample questions cover all question styles at all levels, and they will help you prepare for the test.


Page 19: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q When will the new test be held?

A  ・ Twice a year, in July and December.     *Certain countries/areas will only offer the test in December and not in July.

   ・ In 2010, the test dates are July 4th and December 5th.       *The July 2010 test includes N1, N2 and N3 only. *From the December 2010 test onwards, all five levels will be included.   

Page 20: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

Q Where is the test administered outside Japan ?

A See “List of Overseas Test Site Cities and Local Host Institutions” on our official website.

・ You can find cities and countries/areas offering the test. ・ You can also see if local host institutions offer the test in July and/or December.

Page 21: Language Knowledge (Vocabulary/Grammar)

・ JLPT official website welcomes you!  

Lots of information, such as the JLPT Guidebook, sample questions, Listening audio samples, FAQs and more are waiting for you. ・  Send your inquiries in Japanese or English from the inquiry page of the official website.     *Inquiries regarding the JLPT outside Japan only. For inquiries on JLPT administration in Japan, please call JEES, the JLPT administrator in Japan.

More Questions?