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  3. Why is it necessary to receive the Japanese Language Proficiency Test? Check the benefits, exams and example questions of it in this article

Why is it necessary to receive the Japanese Language Proficiency Test? Check the benefits, exams and example questions of it in this article

What is a Japanese Language Proficiency Test?


According to the Ministry of Justice website, the number of foreigners residing in Japan is approximately 2.38 million as of 2017. Among them, about 500,000 people work with work visas other than study abroad, permanent residents, and family stays.
There are various benefits to obtaining a Japanese Language Proficiency Test for foreigners working in Japan. This article introduces the benefits of passing the Japanese Language Proficiency Test, the pass rate, and examples.
What is the Japanese Language Proficiency Test? If you are interested in the exam, or if you are thinking of taking the exam in 2019, please refer to it.

What is a Japanese Language Proficiency Test?
The Japanese Language Proficiency Test was created in 1984 by the Japan Foundation and the Japan International Education Support Association as a test to measure and certify Japanese proficiency of people whose native language is not Japanese.
Although there is a qualification of a similar name, it is a test for people whose first language is Japanese and has a different purpose.
There are five levels of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test, ranging from the basic N5 to the Japanese N1 used in a wide range of situations. The test is held twice a year.
Expressing the difficulty in the deviation value, N1: 68, N2: 56, N3: 54, N5: 43. N1 is very difficult, and it is said that the number of kanji required to pass is about 2,000 and the number of words is about 10,000. This is twice the amount of N2, so you can see how difficult the test is.
Pass rates vary by year, but the average pass rate for N1 is about 30% for domestic examinations and about 30% for overseas examinations, which is about 30%.

Dates for the 2019 Japanese Language Proficiency Test


The first Japanese language proficiency test in 2019 will be held on July 7, 2019 (Sunday) and the second on December 1, 2019 (Sunday).
The Japanese Language Proficiency Test is available in 86 countries in addition to 47 prefectures in Japan. (As of February 2019) The following countries can take the exam. Please note that depending on the location, you may only be able to take the first or second exam.
・ East Asia: Korea, China, Mongolia, Taiwan
・ Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Cambodia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, Brunei, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos
・ South Asia: India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Maldives
・ Oceania: Australia, New Zealand, Marshall Islands
・ North America: Canada, USA
・ Latin America: Costa Rica, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Ecuador, El Salvador, Colombia, Chile, Trinidad and Tobago, Paraguay, Brazil, Venezuela, Peru, Bolivia
・ Western Europe: Ireland, Italy, United Kingdom, Austria, Netherlands, Greece, Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Belgium, Portugal
・ Eastern Europe: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Georgia, Slovenia, Serbia, Tajikistan, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Belarus, Poland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Romania, Russia
・ Middle East: Israel, Iran, Qatar, Turkey
・ North Africa: Algeria, Egypt, Sudan, Morocco
・ Africa: Kenya, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, South Africa

Benefits for foreigners to take the Japanese Language Proficiency Test


The Japanese Language Proficiency Test has the following four features.

Measure whether you have everyday language communication skills
Even if you know the meanings of Japanese characters and words, you cannot communicate smoothly. The Japanese-Language Proficiency Test is a written test, but it is an exam that can measure not only language knowledge but also the ability to read and listen to and understand Japanese.

There are 5 levels so it is easy to take the test
The Japanese Language Proficiency Test has five levels, from the basic N5 to N1 that can be applied in various real life situations, and you can take the level that suits you. Also, as mentioned above, depending on the occupation, the level that must be acquired may be determined.

Use scale scores that accurately show your Japanese ability
The test results alone do not tell how much Japanese can be used in daily life. In order to make it easier to determine how much everyday conversation you can do, they had a questionnaire about what you can do in Japanese and organize it into a list for each level of the exam.
This is called the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test Can-do Self-Evaluation List, which can be used to set goals for future Japanese language learning and to inform people around you how much Japanese can be used.

Flow of taking the Japanese Language Proficiency Test


The flow of taking the Japanese Language Proficiency Test is slightly different between taking the exam in Japan and taking it overseas.

①When taking an exam in Japan

Apply online
Register for "MyJLPT" on the Japan International Education Support Association website and apply for the exam. Registration itself is possible at any time, but the application period is fixed. The first exam will start in mid-March and the second exam in mid-August.

Apply for the exam by mail
Applications are sold at major bookstores nationwide. The period is the same as the Internet, with the first from mid-March and the second from mid-August.

You will receive an admission ticket
If your application is accepted, you will receive an admission ticket from the Japan International Education Support Association.
The first season is mid-July and the second mid-November.

Take a test
On the day of the exam, you will take the exam at the venue in each prefecture designated on the admission ticket.

Examination results and results announcement
The Japan International Education Support Association will receive a pass / fail result notification for all candidates and a Japanese language certificate will be issued to successful candidates. The first time is around the beginning of September for the first and around the beginning of February for the second.
In addition, those who apply on the Internet can also see the results on MyJLPT.

➁When taking an exam overseas
How to get an application
Check the implementation city and implementation period in the country / region where you can take the examination, confirm the application method with the executing institution, and request an application.

Application / examination fees
The application period is from March to April for the first and from August to September for the second. Exam fees and application methods vary depending on the country / region.

Examination results and results announcement
The Japan International Education Support Association will send a pass / fail result notification to all candidates. Successful applicants will receive a Japanese language certificate. The first time is around the beginning of September for the first and around the beginning of February for the second.

Guideline for Japanese Language Proficiency Test N1-N5


There are 5 levels of Japanese language proficiency test from N5 to N1.

N5 level (able to understand basic Japanese to some extent)
At N5 level, you can read and write basic hiragana and katakana, kanji, and text. If you have a slow conversation, you can understand the information you need.

N4 level (able to understand basic Japanese)
At the N4 level, you can understand more basic Japanese than N5. If you have a slow conversation, you can fully understand everyday conversation.

N3 level (able to understand Japanese to some extent in daily life)
At this level, you can get information from the headlines of newspapers. In everyday life, you can understand everyday conversations at normal speed and sentences that are difficult depending on the expression.
N2 level (able to understand some Japanese in everyday life to some extent)
You can understand the flow and expression of the story from newspapers and readings on general topics. You can understand conversations and content in a wide range of everyday situations.

N1 level (able to understand Japanese in everyday life)
You can understand daily life conversations, newspapers, and a wide range of content. You can understand difficult grammar and idioms that are difficult to see in everyday situations.

Example of Japanese Language Proficiency Test
N5
__の ことばは ひらがなで どうかきますか。1・2・3・4から いちばん いい ひとつを えらんで ください
新しい くるまですね。

1、あたらしい   2、あだらしい  3、あらたしい  4、あらだしい
→正解:1

N4
__の ことばは ひらがなで どうかきますか。1・2・3・4から いちばん いい ひとつを えらんで ください
あには バスで 会社に 通って います

1、むかって   2、かよって  3、わたって  4、もどって
→正解:2

N3
__の言葉の読み方として最もよいものを、1・2・3・4から一つ選びなさい。
山本さんはクラスの代表に選ばれた。
①たいひょう  ②だいひょ  ③だいひょう  ④たいひょ
→正解:③

N2
__の言葉の読み方として最もよいものを、1・2・3・4から一つ選びなさい。
この黒い種からどんな花がさくのだろうか。

①だね  ②たね  ③じゅ  ④しゅ
→正解:②

N1
__の言葉の読み方として最もよいものを、1・2・3・4から一つ選びなさい。
彼は今、新薬の研究開発に挑んでいる。

①はげんで  ②のぞんで  ③からんで  ④いどんで
→正解:④

In conclusion
From the examples, it can be seen that the problem of N1 is very difficult even for Japanese people, and it cannot be compensated for by staying in Japan for a long time.
However, there are many companies that require N2 and N1 levels, and possessing them is advantageous for obtaining a work visa and clearing the conditions for national examinations. So if you plan to work in Japan, it’s good if you take the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.