Major changes include biannual administration and five levels instead of four.

Biannual Administration (2009)

Starting in 2009, the current JLPT will be held twice a year before the new test is introduced in 2010. In July of 2009, the current Level 1 and Level 2 tests will be offered, followed by all four levels in December of 2009. Testing in July will be conducted in Japan as well as in a limited number of locations in China and elsewhere overseas.

Five Levels (2010)

  • N1: Approximately the same passing level as the existing Level 1 test, but designed to enable slightly more advanced abilities to be measured as well.
  • N2: Approximately the same passing level as the existing Level 2 test.
  • N3: Positioned at a level bridging existing Level 2 and Level 3 tests.
  • N4: Approximately the same passing level as the existing Level 3 test.
  • N5: Approximately the same passing level as the existing Level 4 test

All the tests, N1 through N5, will consist of both a Reading Section (covering Writing-Vocabulary as well as Reading and Grammar) and a Listening Section. This round of revisions will not extend to the introduction of tests of oral and compositional ability leaving it as future challenge.

Further Reading:

Japanese Language Proficiency Test (Official Website in English)
Japanese Language Proficiency Test (Wiki)
Revision of the Japanese-Language Proficiency Test: Second Progress Report (PDF; The Japan Foundation)

[via xorsyst]

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2 thoughts on “Significant Changes to the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)

  1. When I first heard of this a couple of months ago, my mind buzzed with concern over how this will affect me directly (I’m taking it this year). In time, I decided that the proposed changes were perfectly reasonable – and I especially applaud the new twice-yearly schedule.

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