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How fast can the average person learn Japanese?


Japanese is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, with over 127 million speakers. Learning Japanese can be a challenging task for beginners, and the speed at which a person learns depends on various factors. In this article, we will explore how fast an average person can learn Japanese.

The Japanese Language

Japanese is a language that has its roots in East Asia and is spoken primarily in Japan. It is a complex language with three writing systems: kanji, hiragana, and katakana. The language has a unique sound system with five vowels and fourteen consonants.

Japanese Snack Box

Factors Affecting the Learning Speed

The speed at which a person learns Japanese depends on several factors such as their age, motivation, learning style, previous language experience, and exposure to the language. Younger learners tend to learn faster than older learners, while those with prior knowledge of languages may find it easier to learn.

Language Learning Techniques

There are various techniques for learning Japanese, such as attending classes, using textbooks, watching Japanese movies and TV shows, speaking with native speakers, and using language learning apps. It is essential to find the technique that works best for you.

Learning Vocabulary

Learning vocabulary is a crucial aspect of learning Japanese. It is recommended to start with basic words and phrases and gradually build up your vocabulary. Flashcards, word lists, and spaced repetition software can be helpful tools in learning new words.

Grammar Rules

Grammar rules are essential in learning any language, including Japanese. It is recommended to start with basic grammar structures such as sentence patterns and verb conjugation. Practice exercises and quizzes can help reinforce grammar rules.

Listening Comprehension

Listening comprehension is an important aspect of learning Japanese. It is recommended to listen to Japanese music, podcasts, and videos regularly. This will help you get used to the sound of the language and improve your listening skills.

Speaking Practice

Speaking practice is crucial in developing your conversational skills in Japanese. It is recommended to practice speaking with native speakers or taking part in conversation exchange programs. Recording yourself speaking can also be helpful in identifying areas that need improvement.

Reading Practice

Reading practice is essential for improving your reading skills in Japanese. It is recommended to start with simple texts such as children’s books and gradually move on to more complex texts. Reading manga or other Japanese literature can also be helpful.

Writing Practice

Writing practice is crucial for developing your writing skills in Japanese. It is recommended to start with simple sentences and gradually move on to more complex ones. Writing short stories or keeping a diary in Japanese can also be helpful.

Immersion Techniques

Immersion techniques involve surrounding yourself with the language you are learning as much as possible. This includes watching Japanese TV shows or movies without subtitles, listening to Japanese music or podcasts regularly, or even traveling to Japan.


In conclusion, the speed at which an average person learns Japanese depends on several factors such as age, motivation, learning style, previous language experience, and exposure to the language. By employing various language learning techniques, practicing regularly, and immersing yourself in the language as much as possible, you can improve your chances of learning Japanese quickly and effectively.

Can I learn Japanese in 2 years?

It typically takes 2-3 years to become proficient in advanced Japanese. At the intermediate level, you can comprehend most of what your teacher says and understand TV programs. However, there are still some limitations when using the language with native Japanese speakers. This was reported on June 19, 2020.

Does it take 1 year to learn Japanese?

Learning Japanese can be quite challenging for native English speakers, with Japanese being one of the most difficult languages to master. However, if your goal is to be able to communicate on a basic level with locals and make friends in Japan, you can achieve conversational fluency in less than a year, especially if you forgo learning the hiragana and katakana writing systems.

Is 30 too late to learn Japanese?

If you are over 30 years old, you may be wondering if it’s too late to study Japanese in Japan. However, recent reports claiming it’s impossible to study in Japan after 30 are untrue. It’s never too late to pursue your goals of learning the Japanese language.

Is 1 hour a day enough to learn Japanese?

Based on my experience studying Japanese for the past 5 years, I can confidently say that dedicating 2 hours a day to practice is sufficient to meet your goals. To put this into context, I myself only studied for roughly an hour every other day. If your definition of fluency involves being able to hold a conversation, then achieving this level may take around a couple of years.

Can I master Japanese in 6 months?

Chris Broad, known for his YouTube channel Abroad in Japan, proves that it’s possible to attain a good level of Japanese proficiency within a few months of studying. He suggests that even with just six months of dedicated studying, it’s possible to communicate effectively in Japanese.

What language is hardest to learn?

Mandarin Chinese is considered the most challenging language to learn according to various sources. The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center categorizes it as a Category IV language, which means it is among the most difficult for English speakers to master.

Setting Realistic Goals

It is essential to set realistic goals when learning Japanese. Trying to learn the language in a short period can lead to frustration and burnout. Instead, break down your goals into smaller achievable targets. This will help you feel a sense of accomplishment and motivate you to continue learning.

Consistency is Key

Consistency is crucial in learning any language, including Japanese. It is recommended to practice regularly, even if it’s just for a few minutes every day. Consistent practice will help you retain what you have learned and improve your skills over time.

Patience and Perseverance

Learning any language takes time, patience, and perseverance. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see immediate progress. Learning a language is a long-term process, and it’s essential to keep at it even when it gets challenging.

Find a Language Partner

Finding a language partner can be an effective way to practice speaking and listening skills in Japanese. You can find language partners online or through language exchange programs. This will give you the opportunity to practice with someone who speaks the language fluently and receive feedback on your pronunciation and grammar.

Cultural Understanding

Learning Japanese involves understanding the culture and customs of Japan. It is essential to learn about Japanese etiquette, traditions, and social norms to communicate effectively with native speakers. This will also help you appreciate the language better and understand its nuances.

Seeking Help from Professionals

If you find yourself struggling with learning Japanese, seeking help from professionals can be beneficial. You can hire a tutor or take classes at a language school to receive personalized instruction and guidance. This can help you overcome any challenges you may encounter while learning the language.

Continuing Education

Learning Japanese is an ongoing process that requires continuous education. Even after reaching your initial goals, it’s essential to continue practicing and expanding your knowledge of the language. This will help you maintain your skills and improve over time.

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