Well, I have FINALLY received my JLPT results, the exam that I took in December, on Friday so at least I know how well my studies have been going. And after much anticipation I can reveal to you....
However, as bad as it may sound I am not as downtrodden as you would expect. The thing is, I booked the exam expecting to fail as I have never had any formal classes for Japanese (I learn through books and online courses, such as Japanesepod101.com) so was not 100% sure of my level in Japanese. One of the reasons I wanted to take the test was so I would have an idea of my Japanese level, and just how good I may be at it.
The scorecard also breaks down your scores into levels, only A, B or C. For an A you need to get over 67% of the questions correct in that section, for a B you need to get between 33% and 66% of the questions correct, and for a C you need anything less than 33%.
For the Vocabulary section of the exam I scored enough marks to get an A. This I am very happy with, as it shows to me that at least this studying is paying off to some extent as I can memorise the words, and read them in Japanese, and put pencil to paper to choose the correct answer.
For the Grammar section of the exam I earned enough marks to get a B grade. This I was kind of expecting, as grammar is not really my strong point at the moment but is one of the areas I am working on the most. Thankfully, I must have done well enough in it though to actually get a B grade.
Lastly, in the Listening section of the examination i earned a C grade. This, unfortunately, was the hardest part of the examination in my opinion, and I think the answer might be because of my method of studying. Where I do not attend a formal class, mainly because there are no lessons anywhere near me, I do not get to talk Japanese as much as I would like, and therefore my listening skills will not be as up-to-scratch as most other Japanese Language students.
I am now trying to rectify this by talking to a couple of people in Japanese (one of them is at my TaeKwonDo class and is very helpful, teaching me new words or correcting me before our class begins). I even spoke to a couple of people at Hyper Japan 2012 in Japanese, albeit a very small amount (just ordering food in Japanese, but at least they understood me and complied, although I did ask for a Calpis in Japanese at the Japan Centre stall and, although the person understood, never actually put the drink in the bag nor charged me, but now I really crave it!) including....Natusko Aso! (Although, again, it was a very small amount as I was a little star-struck, i only managed こんにちわ and どもう ありがとう as the rest of the words, both English and Japanese, just melted from my brain!)
Although I have been slacking a little recently with my Japanese, I have decided that I will now swap all the time that I play computer games (PS3, PSP, DS and on my Android phone) with Japanese study. This way I will be studying for about 2 hours a day at least, and hopefully learning a lot more vocabulary and grammar will make me more confident to speak Japanese, and then all of my studies will reach a new level and I will be able to pass the JLPT when I take it in December. At the moment I would be happy to just re-sit JLPT N5 and pass it, but I am aiming to sit JLPT N4 this year and pass that instead.
Did any of you take your JLPT last year and get your results? If so, leave a comment and let us know how you did, fail or pass it doesn't matter, as long as you realise what you can do to get better and improve that is all that matters.