Nat

About the Japanese Language NAT-TEST

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The Japanese Language NAT-TEST is an examination that measures the Japanese language ability of students who are not native Japanese speakers. The tests are separated by difficulty (five levels) and general ability is measured in three categories: Grammar/Vocabulary, Listening and Reading Comprehension. The format of the exam and the types of questions are equivalent to those that appear on the Japanese Language Ability Test (JLPT).

Strengths of the NAT-TEST

The Japanese Language NAT-TEST is based on the Japanese Language Achievement Test for Non-Native Speakers, held twice a year since 1988 in Japan and other countries such as China, Taiwan and South Korea. The Japanese Language Achievement Test is used by many Japanese language schools and education centers as a proactive way of measuring students` performance and in guidance counseling.

 

Levels and Sections of the Exam

The Japanese Language NAT-TEST has five levels. The easiest level is 5 and the most difficult level is 1. Each level corresponds to its respective level on the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (N5 to N1).

Levels 1 and 2 of the exam contain the following sections: Language Knowledge (reading/vocabulary/grammar) and Listening. Levels 3, 4 and 5 of the exam contain the following sections: Language Knowledge (reading/vocabulary), a second Language Knowledge (grammar, reading comprehension) and Listening.

 

Level 1
1Q
One has studied Japanese for about one year (approx. 1000 hours of study) and has achieved an extremely high level of Japanese competence. This level is suitable for those who wish to enter a Japanese university or graduate school and for those who are seeking to pass level 1 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.
Level 2
2Q
One has studied Japanese for nine to twelve months (approx. 800 hours of study) and has achieved a high level of Japanese competence. This level is suitable for those who are studying Japanese as a prerequisite to enter a vocational school or Japanese university in the future and for those who are seeking to pass level 2 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.
Level 3
3Q
One has studied Japanese for six to nine months (approx. 600 hours of study) and has achieved a moderate level of Japanese competence. This level is suitable for those who wish to prepare for a university or vocational school entrance exam and for those who are seeking to pass level 3 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.
Level 4
4Q
One has studied Japanese for three to six months (approx. 400 hours of study) and has achieved a basic level of Japanese competence. This level is suitable for those who are seeking to pass level 4 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.
Level 5
5Q
One has studied Japanese for one to three months (approx. 200 hours of study) and has achieved a very basic level of Japanese competence. This level is suitable for those who are seeking to pass level 5 of the Japanese Language Proficiency Test.

The exact organization and content of the exam differs slightly for each level, however a basic guide to the content on the NAT-TEST is as follows:

Language Knowledge (reading and vocabulary)

Level 1
1Q
Kanji reading, contextual comprehension, synonyms, usage
Level 2
2Q
Kanji reading, orthography, word formation, contextual comprehension, synonyms, usage
Level 3
3Q
Kanji reading, expressions, contextual comprehension, synonyms, usage
Level 4
4Q
Kanji reading, orthography, contextual comprehension, synonyms, usage
Level 5
5Q
Kanji reading, orthography, contextual comprehension

Language Knowledge (grammar, reading comprehension)

Level 1
1Q
Grammar – Conjugation, sentence composition, grammar in compositions
Reading Comprehension: Understanding content (short and medium-form writings), integrated comprehension, thematic comprehension, information retrieval
Level 2
2Q
Grammar – Conjugation, sentence composition, grammar in compositions
Reading Comprehension: Understanding content (short and medium-form writings), integrated comprehension, thematic comprehension, information retrieval
Level 3
3Q
Grammar – Conjugation, sentence composition, grammar in compositions
Reading Comprehension: Understanding content (short, medium and long-form writings), information retrieval
Level 4
4Q
Grammar – Conjugation, sentence composition, grammar in compositions
Reading Comprehension: Understanding content (short and medium-form writings), information retrieval
Level 5
5Q
Grammar – Conjugation, sentence composition, grammar in compositions
Reading Comprehension: Understanding content (short and medium-form writings), information retrieval

Listening Comprehension

Level 1
1Q
Task-based comprehension, comprehension of key points, understanding a synopsis, quick responses, integrated comprehension
Level 2
2Q
Task-based comprehension, comprehension of key points, understanding a synopsis, quick responses, integrated comprehension
Level 3
3Q
Task-based comprehension, comprehension of key points, understanding a synopsis, expressions used in speech, quick responses
Level 4
4Q
Task-based comprehension, comprehension of key points, expressions used in speech, quick responses
Level 5
5Q
Task-based comprehension, comprehension of key points, expressions used in speech, quick responses

Including the breaks between each section, the entire exam will take approximately half a day to complete. For more information on what to expect on exam day and beyond.