Class Descriptions

The Japan Society offers a variety of levels of Japanese lessons throughout the year.

Beginning Series (I-III)

The Beginning Series focuses primarily on the development of basic conversational skills and an understanding of Japanese as it is currently spoken in Japan. Topics covered include introductions, giving opinions, asking permission, expressing preferences, and giving and receiving. Both hiragana and katakana are introduced, and the student should be able to read and produce both accurately upon completion of this series of classes. Please note that Beginning I is for students with NO previous Japanese experience. Beginning II, Beginning III, etc., assume some familiarity with the language.

The required textbook for the Beginning Series is Japanese for Busy People (JBP), Volume 1, Rev. 3rd edition (kana or romanized versions):

  • Beginning 1: Lessons 1-7
  • Beginning 2: Lessons 8-16
  • Beginning 3: Lessons 17-25
  • Some classes also use workbooks.

Note: Students can choose “kana” or “romanized” versions. Kana version might be challenging at first for those who are taking Beginning I class. However, it might be a better textbook for Beginning II & III classes.

Intermediate Series (I-III)

The Intermediate Series continues to expand upon speaking, reading, and writing skills with the gradual introduction of common kanji compounds. Language functions covered include describing things, expressing intent, asking permission, signaling obligation, and expressing condition, among others. Aspects of the culture are introduced along with linguistic structures. Japanese is the primary language of instruction.

The required textbook for the Intermediate Series is 初級日本語 げんき GENKI I Second Edition.

    • Intermediate I: Lessons 1-7
    • Intermediate II: Lessons 8-10
    • Intermediate III: Lessons 11 & 12
    • GENKI I workbook is also used for additional exercise and homework.

Intermediate Series (IV-1~4)

Intermediate IV is for students who have completed Intermediate III with JSNC or for those who with previous Japanese language experience equivalent to advanced JLPT N5 level. It is required for students to read and write hiragana and katakana. Some knowledge of kanji is expected for this level (150 kanji). Students should understand grammatical items such as verb tense and aspect perfective/progressive, hypothetical/conditional statements, casual form to potential, adjective conjugation, and expressing a sequence of events/volition, etc.

The required textbook for the Intermediate Series is GENKI II 『げんき2』and GENKI II workbook 

    • Intermediate IV-1: Lessons 13-15
    • Intermediate IV-2: Lessons 16-18
    • Intermediate IV-3: Lessons 19-21
    • Intermediate IV-4: Lessons 22&23
    • GENKI II workbook is also used for additional exercise and homework.

Pre-Advanced and Advanced

The Pre-Advanced and Advanced Courses are geared towards students who have a solid foundation in both conversational and written Japanese. This class focuses on the development of accurate and extended discourse as well as on the expansion of kanji knowledge in the reading of some newspaper articles. Study materials are drawn from primary Japanese sources, and the class is conducted entirely in Japanese. The course textbooks for this level may change by term. Please refer to the registration page for more details.

JLPT Prep Courses

The Japan Society is proud to offer Japanese-Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) preparatory courses. Designed for non-native speakers of Japanese, JLPT is an internationally accredited language examination that measures communicative competences in accomplishment of tasks. It is offered once a year on the first Sunday of December (Exam on Dec. 5, 2010). Starting in 2010, the test levels are revised and will be a 5-level format (N1 through N5) with creation of N3, a new level bridging between conventional Level 2 and Level 3 tests. Each test (N1 through N5) will have (reading) and (listening). The former will incorporate the Writing-Vocabulary and Reading-Grammar sections of the conventional tests, while the latter will take the place of the Listening section of the conventional tests. For more detailed information, please refer to

Students should refer to the course textbooks to determine the most appropriate class for their level.

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