Kanji Kentei

By Hannah, 22 June, 2016

Also referred to as Kanken, this exam is designed for native speakers of Japanese, as opposed to the JLPT, which is primarily for people who are studying Japanese as a foreign language.

As its name implies, the Kanken tests various aspects of kanji, their readings, stroke order, radicals, etc.

There are twelve levels; 10 is the lowest and 1 is the highest. Levels 10 through 5 cover the kanji learned in elementary school grades 1 through 6, respectively. Levels 4 and 3 are roughly equivalent to junior high school material. Levels Pre-2 and 2 include the kanji learned in high school and are often taken by adults seeking college admission or employment. Levels Pre-1 and 1 cover more complex characters and compounds that only a scholar (or at least avid reader?) would be expected to know.

In Japan, the Kanken is offered in paper form three times per year, and as a computer-based test (CBT) even more frequently depending on location and availability of testing locations.

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