I did it. I pulled the mental trigger. One guy, one test at the end of this year, and a whole lot of caffeine-induced Anki/immersion sessions in-between. I am going to see how far AJATT will get me for this absurd gauge of intellect. And while I, like most people, don’t like the idea of a test being a measure of one’s knowledge, it *will *push me to study more consistently.

I recently took the J-CAT test to see where I am. According to the questionably accurate results, with a score of 190, I am ten points from upper-intermediate level. Keep in mind, this test is a pretty dated, and their results are based on the old JLPT standard. This means that compared to the current JLPT test, I am slightly lower. Being ten points from the bottom of the old N2, I’d say I’m smack down the middle of intermediate (~N3 level). I am intermediate intermediate.

Here are my results:

A big concern at this point is vocabulary— the bane of an intermediate Japanese learner’s existence. For me, it just means more inputting sentence cards, adding one or two words at a time to my brain’s word bank. But there is one thing that I fear worse than ordinary vocabulary.

Reading. Friends of mine have said it is the part of the test you want to spend the most time on. Even growing up, I struggled with reading comprehension in English. Doing it in Japanese sounds like double trouble. If you couldn’t tell from my test results above, this is my biggest downfall. But I am determined to read more in the coming months and improve on this. I will by no means let it be a discouragement.

Taking it outside of Japan means my country only administers the test once a year. But that’s okay because I need that much time to prepare. Good luck to anyone who will be joining me for the test come December.