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JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

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JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby leonl » Mon 04.06.2009 2:34 pm

Not to be rude or anything but what do you gain from the jlpt? Excluding those who take it so they can work or go to school what do you gain from it? The number of people on this forum and in general who obsess about the jlpt seem very disproportionate to the number of people who would actually have any legitimate use for it. A written test with a listening section is a poor way to gauge your skill in a language, the only thing it does measure is how well you can study. I do not mean to be confrontational, by nature I am very passive person, but lately this question has been really bothering me.


P.S. I realize this may have come up before, but not quite in the manner I phrased the question(I hope). The only topics I could find were people asking what they could do with it and what level they should take. I am asking why bother at all? Speaking and reading actual Japanese would seem a better, more worthwhile endeavor,
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby astaroth » Mon 04.06.2009 2:44 pm

As for me, it's a challenge first and something good I could add to my cv.
For the former, not living in Japan and not having any Japanese community where I live I don't have many ways to practice Japanese and to know whether I'm making progress or not. I regularly write on lang-8 and chat there, and regularly watch Japanese dorama or movies, but I feel that this doesn't give me an actual goal to where to go.
For cv. In the next few years I'll have to look for another postdoc. To be able to add an entire new region to the usual US-Canada and Europe might give me a bit more chances to get it. (Or so I truly hope...)

Then I'm with you that a test will never gauge one's ability to converse or understand a language, but only how good one is to study and more importantly to study for the specific test. But not having many other good ways to gauge my knowledge, jlpt is good as anything else.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby xiauwi » Mon 04.06.2009 4:46 pm

I am also learning japanese, it's undeniable to say that Jlpt is one of my consideration when taking japanese at the first time, but i soon realise the beauty of the language itself.

I am a chinese born in indonesia, i do have a chance to learn my chinese and be proficient in it but i didn't grab the opportunity nicely, and i regretted for my half effort in chinese. i guess it's due to my lack of passion with the language,
and now i am ended up with only able to speak it and communicate my means, but unable to do it through writing.

But when i learn japanese, i found that i have a strong passion for it. i can just sit in library for 3 hours reading a particular japanese story, anything about japan, be it in english or japanese, and i start to love animation and japanese song. i dun even believe i go and print out the lyrics in japanese and finding english translation to appreciate the songs. then i will play the song and sing together as the song played through mp3.


jlpt is a cert that proves you to others that you are proficient in japanese as a foreign language, it's just like the marriage cert that proves you have married to someone..well does the marriage cert matter to u, if u really love that person? ...it may varies from person to person. :D
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby leonl » Mon 04.06.2009 7:29 pm

xiauwi wrote:jlpt is a cert that proves you to others that you are proficient in japanese as a foreign language, it's just like the marriage cert that proves you have married to someone..well does the marriage cert matter to u, if u really love that person? ...it may varies from person to person.


This is what I think is at the heart of my problem with the JLPT. The JLPT doesn't prove to anybody that you are proficient, it just says hey I have this certificate. Take me for example my focus in learning Japanese right now is reading and writing, so I could learn to read write fairly well, take the JLPT pass the reading stuff, and do poorly on listening part and as long as I manage that 60%(70% for Level 1) than I have proven that I am proficient when really I am not.

The marriage certificate example is not entirely correct. Unlike the JLPT there is no way around needing a marriage certificate to prove you are married to someone, not sure if we still recognize common law marriages or not. If an employer likes you and you can speak enough Japanese to where you'll be able to function in your job position, then they can make that little JLPT requirement go away. However when signing up for health benefits and whatnot as a married couple you generally need to provide a marriage certificate no way around that.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby Disco » Mon 04.06.2009 7:58 pm

I think it's required to go to a Japanese University ( aint that first on everyone's list)
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby leonl » Mon 04.06.2009 8:05 pm

It use to be, now Japanese Universities have their own specific entrance exam the EJU
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby Yudan Taiteki » Mon 04.06.2009 8:35 pm

My JLPT certificate sits in the bottom of a box somewhere in my closet and has never done me any good.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby Sairana » Mon 04.06.2009 9:28 pm

I'm interested in taking the JLPT eventually, but only for the purpose of seeing how well I could score on it.

However, I don't know why people study specifically for the JLPT, either. It may have something to do with the "teach the test" mentality in American schools. They no longer measure how well a student understands a subject, but how well they were drilled on specific points in order to make them score well on the test. I can't help but wonder how this has impacted the way students see tests. They are led to believe that scoring well on the test was a product of their knowledge and proficiency, even though it often isn't.

That's all conjecture, though.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby Disco » Mon 04.06.2009 9:30 pm

"the memorization of isolated facts destined to be forgotten"- completely ineffective.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby yukamina » Mon 04.06.2009 10:19 pm

A sense of achievement? So you can pat yourself on the back and say you're 'proficient' in Japanese.
I more or less lost my interest in studying for JLPT when I realized I'd have to spend a ton of time studying stuff I wasn't interested in. Instead cramming news based frequency lists, I'd much rather read novels and play RPGs. I really hate news papers and technical stuff. Thankfully I'm okay with not being fully fluent.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby Gundaetiapo » Mon 04.06.2009 10:29 pm

spin13's sig implies one reason it's good to have an objective measure.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby becki_kanou » Tue 04.07.2009 7:23 am

I got my JLPT1 ages ago, but I never did anything with it either. At the time though, it was fun and gave me a goal to reach as well as a measure of progress.

It does looks good on the CV and Japanese in general are crazy about certificates and various 検定試験. Also, it impresses the heck out of Japanese people if you can say that you have one, but then again saying 「初めまして、私の名前はジョンです。」 impresses the heck out of most people too, so maybe that doesn't count.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby two_heads_talking » Tue 04.07.2009 2:34 pm

it made me an omelet once, but that was in a dream, does that count?
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby ss » Wed 04.08.2009 10:40 am

I think, first and very important, one has to know what one wants to achieve in the first place, and from there move on with your plan. It has to start somewhere.

Learning a language (even with our native language) is not a breakfast party with complimentary coffee, tea, yummy cookies and brownies. It takes a huge investment of time and dedication.

As may have been mentioned before, JLPT is not everything. Holding a JLPT cert does not always prove that you are proficient in the language, and vice versa. This actually applies to all other languages, I guess. I find some people (in their native language) graduated with a very well-recognized certificate, but life doesn’t always surround them with countless wonders.

Personally, for me, I find tackling new words of a foreign language requires a lot of memorization. To challenge myself, I set a goal to pass JLPT, the whole learning process at the same time serves as a sole motivation for me. Before I can memorize, I have to learn first. I believe as I move on, deep impressions are formed on the mind, especially with more functional phrases and words. Again, I see every form of learning as a process of acquiring new knowledge and skill.

However, no matter which route one chose, what we learned may not stay forever, the targeted language may fade away due to lack of usage and many other reasons.
Last edited by ss on Sun 04.19.2009 8:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: JLPT, Does it make you breakfast?

Postby leonl » Fri 04.10.2009 8:28 pm

Sairana wrote:I'm interested in taking the JLPT eventually, but only for the purpose of seeing how well I could score on it.

However, I don't know why people study specifically for the JLPT, either. It may have something to do with the "teach the test" mentality in American schools. They no longer measure how well a student understands a subject, but how well they were drilled on specific points in order to make them score well on the test. I can't help but wonder how this has impacted the way students see tests. They are led to believe that scoring well on the test was a product of their knowledge and proficiency, even though it often isn't.

That's all conjecture, though.


Conjecture? Perhaps, but it does get at the what I am talking about which is people equating passing the JLPT with being proficient in Japanese
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