JLPT 2017 second test and beyond

Yesterday was finally the second JLPT test of the year. As I prepared a lot for it, I cannot but give my impressions on the test.

Disappointed 😫

To be honest, I went to the test with a decent amount of self-confidence. I was particularly afraid of the grammar part so I worked a lot on it and when the day of the test finally came, I felt ready. But sincerely, I am not even sure to have made a better performance than I did in July.

Surprisingly, the grammar part was not at all difficult. Of course, there were some tricky questions but I had the impression that the test was easier than the mock tests I had practised. On the contrary, the vocabulary part was quite difficult to me. But I guess that rather than saying that it was difficult, it’s better to say that I was unlucky. It’s hard to tell which words will come out and I feel that I just run out of luck.

The reading part was okay I would say. Not easier, not more difficult than what I had expected. It was the same level of difficulty than the mock tests I had made. The texts were not particularly challenging but as always, some questions are really tricky.

The big disappointment was the listening part. I worked a lot to improve my listening skills and I always had a good score on the listening part of the mock tests I have made. There were always 2 or 3 questions that I couldn’t answer because I didn’t understand the dialogue well enough but that was it. Yesterday, however, I found that there were a lot of very challenging dialogues or monologues. There was even one question where I could not figure out what they were talking about! This kind of thing usually never happens. There were also several questions were I had no clue what the answer was because the dialogues were filled with unknown words. Maybe I was just tired and couldn’t concentrate…?

Anyway, today I had the occasion to hear other people say that the listening part was difficult, in their opinion. I am a bit relieved. Maybe it really was so?

To sum up, I totally messed up with the listening part and the vocabulary part. I am not at all mad about the vocabulary part because I kept learning new words every single day for the past few months, and I feel that I gave my best. For the listening part, however, I am very disappointed. As for the grammar, I certainly have made some mistakes but overall, I am happy with what I did. And finally, I don’t think that I can reach the full mark with the reading section (as I did when I passed the test in July), but it should be okay.

But happy it’s over 😀

I have embarked on this JLPT journey and even though I am very glad that I did, I am also very glad that it is over.

My results at the test do not really matter because I don’t need to pass the JLPT, I am doing it just to evaluate my level and get some external source of motivation. Even if I am disappointed by my performance, what counts is that I studied hard for the past 4 months and it did bring me a lot. Not only have I increased the number of words I know but I also have reached a point where I feel more or less at ease with the N2 grammar. Not that I would be able to use it, but understand it is already a great step. This is not something that I would have been able to achieve without the perspective of the test.

Now that it is over, I feel free to do all the things I wanted to do but couldn’t because the JLPT preparation was taking all my time. I already posted about my future plan and since that, new ideas have come to my mind. For example, I thought I could add cooking to my list. I hate doing the everyday cooking stuff, but sometimes, I do enjoy spending a little more time, follow a recipe and cook something new. So I bought a very simple and basic cooking book in Japanese (it’s called いちばんやさしい料理のきほん, with the subtitle はじめて料理をする人でも、失敗なし! so I guess that even I can do it!). This is also a good opportunity to learn some cooking relative words and post about it.

I may open new categories on this blog like “cooking” and “films”. There could be an extra post on weekends concerning either a recipe with cooking-related words or a film review. I hope that I can watch at least two Japanese films a month.

Anyway, I am very excited by all the things that are to come, and I hope you’ll have an inspiring Winter too!