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Japanese Honorifics

‘Honorific’ is a linguistic term referring to titles added to a person’s name. In Japanese, the vast majority of these are suffixes. You’ve likely have heard one or two in movies: ‘Daniel-san’ and ‘Miyagi-sensei’ spring to mind. Honorifics aren’t just limited to suffixes however. In English for example, we generally use prefixes added to a […]

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Hidden Beauty of Japan’s Abandoned Buildings

Last year around springtime I wrote an article about Haikyo and my love of urban exploration for the Hiragana Times, in both English and Japanese. Up until now it was only available to see in the magazine version, but it was recently released online too. Here it is in full, English followed by Japanese. Advanced […]

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Haikyo Hiragana Reading Practice

Recently I had an article published in the Hiragana Times (on sale in Japan this month) about Haikyo – Japan’s abandoned buildings. The main article is only available in the magazine, but there’s a small summary on the Hiragana Times homepage that makes for some good reading practice for beginners. Enjoy!

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Japanese Job Hunting Test

Recently as part of my job hunting I had to take a personality test in Japanese. There were quite a number of unusual adjectives that I came across, so I thought the content would be useful for advanced learners of Japanese.

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Japanese School System

Have you ever wondered exactly how old school children are in Japan? Quite often the students are called by their school year and not by their exact age. Various types of media also use the Japanese school year system to break children up into groups.

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Top 10 Buzzwords of 2011 in Japan: 1

Publisher Jiyu Kokuminsha just released the year’s top 10 buzzwords. Selected by a panel of judges, they encapsulate the major trends throughout 2011. You can view the full list of 60 that were candidates here on Gakuranman.com and read more about the top 10 below. Naturally, as a Japanese lesson!

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150,000 Free Japanese-English Sentences

Have you ever heard of the Tanaka Corpus? If you’ve been using Jim Breen’s fantastic free online Japanese-English dictionary JDIC, you may have unwittingly encountered it. The Tanaka Corpus is a collection of over 150,000 sentence pairs ideal for students learning Japanese. Perfect for repetitions in your favourite SRS software!

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Overview of the Japanese Alphabets

I figured it was probably a good idea to have an outline of the Japanese alphabets here on Gakuu for easy access. There are loads of good resources out there that talk about the basics, so this post will be brief, with a sprinkling of advice on how to learn the alphabets.

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