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jibba

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Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« on: December 28, 2011, 04:53:46 pm »
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Hey VCE Japanese students,

I completed Japanese in 2011 and received a score of 50, which surprised myself considering I am from a sub-continental background

I don't think my skill in Japanese is that great to be honest, but I worked the VCE Japanese system in my favour to score well.
So it is in this thread where I will share my tips and answer questions to those struggling/panicking in taking the fascinating language of Japanese at VCE level

First of all some advice to those doing Japanese in 2012, wondering what to do now (during the holidays).

What I did in my holidays was to learn all the VCE Kanji!
It may sound pretty boring, but it will really help you during your SAC's and exam next year if you learn all the kanji right now!

Some more exciting stuff would be to watch Drama.
I think I may have ended up watching a series of something every week throughout 2011.. lool
Drama (more so that anime) really helps your listening.

For first timers to J-Drama, I would recommend watching
Nihonjin no Shiranai Nihongo (a drama recommended by our Japanese teacher)
This drama is a comedy about teaching Japanese to foreigners, so you will definitely learn something new and interesting from this drama

Dragonzakura
This drama is about studying for exams!
 
Also I recommend using Rikai-Kun
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/jipdnfibhldikgcjhfnomkfpcebammhp
Very useful for Detailed Study, when reading Japanese sites with lots of Kanji~

VCE Japanese Verb List for Year 12: http://www.mediafire.com/?855y3i2j43a57x5
(Note: basic verbs are excluded)

All the best to everyone~
and I'll try my best answering any questions.. :)

MyDramaList: http://mydramalist.com/dramalist/jibba (If you want names of Drama to watch)
MyAnimeList: http://myanimelist.net/animelist/jibba&show=0&order=4

EDIT:
My Exam Strategy & Tips

Reading Time: 15 mins
Spend at least 5 mins deciding a topic for Section 3: Writing and coming up with a plan in your head
Spend around 5 minutes reading Section 2: Reading in Japanese (looking up words you don't know in dictionary)
Spend remainder of time getting familiar with Listening questions, if you finish quickly go back to reading comprehension

Listening Section: 30 mins
Answer in English
Take notes in English
This section is about translating Japanese into English as accurately and exactly as you can. I made the example between 料理(りょうり)を作ったことがない vs 料理を作ることができない on the second page of this thread.
The translation of these two into English is different. 'I have never cooked' vs 'I cannot cook'
The markers will be particular about vague translations

Students aiming for a high score should try to get all the answers during the first listening (using the second listening for confirming answers)
(In my exam, I was able to get all of them except one part in the first listening)
Use any extra time for planning your writing or for reading comprehension (Obviously make sure you got the answers in English correct and written down first)
 
Answer in Japanese
Take notes in ROOMAJI (my technique) - Try to write down exactly what you hear into roomaji
If there are words you cannot understand or hear completely, attempt to write down what you hear. It might lead you to getting the correct answer later on 

This section is about copying the Japanese you hear and correctly putting it as the response to the relevant question
They don't want you to change the way they say it, you can simply just copy it as they say it
You may need to phrase your answer to suit the way the question is asked.
For example with last year's paper, you could've summarised the three advantages into one paragraph. Although you could also have three individual sentences
 
Reading Comprehension Section: 40-45 mins
Answer in English
Maybe spend 15-20 mins on this section, but it depends on length of texts and number of texts
Same as I said above, try translate the Japanese into English as accurately as you can

Answer in Japanese
(The killer section and the one where the good students set them selves apart from the rest)
Try to correctly use as much VCE grammar as you can in your responses (use it appropriately though) [Random Tip: I used to use ~そうです (I heard) to end answers where you had to provide information from the text]
Make sure all the VCE Kanji is used in your responses
Stating the obvious, but make sure your response answers the question completely! Do not add unnecessary information for the sake of using grammar

Writing Section: 30 mins
The suggested time is 50 mins, but the quicker you can finish the more time you will have to re-check all of your answers and fix mistakes
Students aiming for 40+ should try to finish in 30 mins
In my exam, I wrote a story as every year the least amount of students attempt that one. Doesn't mean everyone should write a story, but if you are confident in your Japanese it might be easier to score better writing the least popular topic.
Choose the topic you are most confident with.

If you can follow those time suggestions you should have 15-20 mins at the end to re-check everything
In my exam, I had around 15 minutes, which I used to fix kanji, spelling of words, and minimise as many grammatical errors as I could
Personally I think the re-checking time is crucial, because in my case I found a lot of silly errors in my responses, which I was able to fix because I left time at the end.

Tutoring
I would highly recommend a tutor, I had one myself. It is really helpful for your Speaking Exam, if you have someone to speak Japanese to on a regular basis for the months leading up to the exam.
Also, I offer tutoring/sessions at Monash University, Clayton (might be able to do other locations as well). Email me at [email protected] if interested

Minna, Ganbare~
« Last Edit: March 25, 2013, 03:24:35 pm by jibba »

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

Furbob

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2011, 05:22:18 pm »
+1
wow good work jibba + some good advice there - giving this sticky status :D
2011 : English | Accounting | MM CAS | Further | Japanese | MUEP Japanese
2012 : BA(Japanese&Chinese)/BComm @ Monash Clayton

myheaven

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2012, 12:55:46 am »
0
Jibba and I both did unique topics within our class, he clearly did better than me, but there are many reasons to pursue researching a topic that interests you, I was talking to him about this a couple weeks back, and we will hopefully have some stuff to share with this year's jap sl cohort in regards to researching and succeeding with a unique topic.

If you wanna know just how unique our topics were, mine was:
メディアをとおして 広がる 女子高生のイメー
basically, Japanese Media's widespread image of the japanese schoolgirl LOL.
2010: Psych [46]
2011: English [40] Jap [41] Methods [34] Legal [35] BM [33]

Fyrefly

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2012, 03:47:19 am »
0
For first timers to J-Drama, I would recommend watching
Nihonjin no Shiranai Nihongo (a drama recommended by our Japanese teacher)
This drama is a comedy about teaching Japanese to foreigners, so you will definitely learn something new and interesting from this drama

I recommend this too. There's also a manga.
|| BComm + DipLang (Jap) @ Monash ||

prelyudia

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2012, 04:16:23 pm »
0
Jibba and I both did unique topics within our class, he clearly did better than me, but there are many reasons to pursue researching a topic that interests you, I was talking to him about this a couple weeks back, and we will hopefully have some stuff to share with this year's jap sl cohort in regards to researching and succeeding with a unique topic.

If you wanna know just how unique our topics were, mine was:
メディアをとおして 広がる 女子高生のイメー
basically, Japanese Media's widespread image of the japanese schoolgirl LOL.

How did you actually go about researching? Do you just Google the topic and and hoped to find related articles with statistics, etc.?
And are there any general key points that everyone should take note of when researching? I've heard that it's good to know the pros and cons of any topic (like vending machines, etc.)

Also how did you find doing a topic that no one else did? My Japanese teacher is discouraging us from doing that.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2012, 02:10:57 pm by prelyudia »

myheaven

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2012, 10:41:42 pm »
+2



How did you actually go about researching? Do you just Google the topic and and hoped to find related articles with statistics, etc.?
And are there any general key points that everyone should take note of when researching? I've heard that it's good to know the pros and cons of any topic (like vending machines, etc.)

Also how did you find doing a topic that no one else did? My Japanese teacher is discouraging us from doing that. Like a girl in our class wants to do Japanese superstitions but he said it'd be hard if she chose a topic different to everyone else cause she wouldn't be able to practice with anyone.

This is basically how my research worked.
I first started off using english sources, if you can find any books or even wikipedia articles related to your topic, that's sweet !
Usually you can find japanese sources that they used and you can go from there.
I had a couple morning/lunchtime/afterschool sessions with my teacher where we discussed my research, and we worked together to figure out how to approach the information I collected.
I also did this with a tutor.
Both my teacher and tutor also looked out for relevant articles if they ever came across it.
My teacher found some statistics on schoolgirl related crimes and my tutor actually found a bunch of articles related to idol groups like AKB48, and even had a colleague who knew quite a lot about "designer school uniforms".
In terms of independent research, it'd be harder, but if your teacher atleast has the time to check that you're understanding your research properly, then you should be okay.

When it comes to general key points for your detailed study.
Have an answer for anything they could possibly ask you.
A stupid example (which will hopefully illustrate what I mean)
Say you did.. Anime's popularity in Australia(which is already a pretty meh topic which I doubt anyone actually does) It can be like,
What do you think triggered Anime's popularity in Australia?
Pokemon, the anime with well known characters such as a pikachu
What is Pikachu?

That's seriously a stupid example, but basically, if you mention it, KNOW IT.
I tripped during my oral because I didn't have a prepared definition for enjo kousai (stupid mistake I know), and I just did it on the spot as something like "when girls interested in earning money charge men for girlfriend like activities such as going on dates, eating together etc."

Doing a unique topic is crazy fun, as long as you enjoy the topic. Don't do some really deep unique topic if you don't really care that much about it.
I'm sure Jibba has a bit more to say on this, but I'll just mention that he did his topic, because he was a huge fan of what he was researching.

2010: Psych [46]
2011: English [40] Jap [41] Methods [34] Legal [35] BM [33]

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2012, 11:19:23 pm »
+2
Hey, Sorry for late reply (I'm actually attending a bartending course this week LOL)
Okay so answering your questions :D

Detailed Study: School lunch boxes and vending machines? Which one would you advise I choose?
Out of those two, I would choose vending machines as it interests me more :)
It is probably hard trying to do your own topic for detailed study by yourself, but this is what I did but I did have a friend who did my topic but a different area (he ended up with 40 so he did very well too )
My Topic was Vocaloids (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vocaloid), as myheaven said, I was quite a fan and had a genuine interest in the topic.
The examiners would never have seen a topic like this before, and the fact that I pulled it off was definitely the reason why I scored so highly.
You are right that it does put you at a disadvantage not having someone doing your topic, but if you can find a friend who agrees to do your unique topic than that would probably work the best for both of you.
To be honest, I think vending machines are a pretty good topic, but if you can find something unique that you have an interest in, you will most likely score quite well.

I'm scared that my study score will go down as a result of other students' results. Do you know how much it will go down by?
Hmm.. This question probably doesn't really have an answer to it. But the bottom line is your result in your oral and final exam. If you perform better in your exam than the result in your SAC marks, then there is no reason for your marks to fall down. It also depends on the quality of your teacher, in being able to determine who are the best students in your class and in what order. If the people in your class perform similarly to what your teacher has ranked them in, then there is no reason your scores will be affected by your class. But if you all get high SAC marks and some students do a lot worse on the exam, your mark will probably be affected (unless you do really well on the exam yourself).

did you do tutoring for Japanese? If not, how hard did you study for Japanese? Like to what extent? Did you learn a new sentence pattern everyday? Did you expand your vocab everyday?
Yes, I had a tutor who I went to every week. I tried to learn all the grammar patterns as early as I could. Personally, I learn new things quite quickly, so once I learned them it usually stuck. Also our teacher was very good in giving out handouts for grammar, so that helped a lot!
The main tool that helped me solidify my grammar and expand my vocab was watching drama/anime. I would pick up grammar (even non VCE grammar) from things I watched and would learn how to use it. Vocab.. well I did try to memorise vocab from our textbook but that obviously wasn't as fun. Usually I would skim through the vocab for each chapter in the book, and the ones I remember were the ones that I heard again in Drama/Anime. But in the end, it definitely was helpful although tedious, learning vocab just from a list.. I have a list that I've compiled from my textbook, I could type it up and post here if you would like it?

On your questions for General Convo.
If you post them here, I am happy to share extracts from my own answers and comment on how to improve yours.
Generally, if they ask you something like 'How many people in your family', it's usually an opening question and they are determining your skill. What I would do is just straight up answer the question and list who is in your family. Then make a general comment about your family eg: 'なかがいい家族だと思いますが、弟がまだ小学生だから、ちょっとうるさい時もあります。'

Back to Detailed Study 
For researching, Google is your friend and RIKAI-KUN (see my first post)
Rikai-Kun is the best thing ever for detailed study, you'd be crazy not to use it.
Also I found forums very helpful for information (but that is probably only due to the nature of my topic)
Yes, you MUST organise your research into key areas. A sample one off the top of my head for Vending Machines would be:
Definition, History/Development, Uses (Benefits), Differences to Western countries, Problems, Solutions to these problems, Future, and your Opinion

Feel free to ask more questions (That is the purpose of this thread : P)
« Last Edit: January 18, 2012, 10:46:52 am by jibba »

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2012, 09:52:54 pm »
+1
Try convince some of them to change to vending machine  : P , I think it's a better topic and the comparison to western culture aspect gives you something straight away to talk about.

Yea, I learnt a lot of the slang and casual terms as well, but I think overall it will help with the Listening component of the course. I highly recommend watching Nihonjin no Shiranai Nihongo (as said before) Here are the links for the DL's :) http://www.d-addicts.com/forum/torrents.php?search=nihonjin

I would advise getting a tutor (Although they might be quite expensive), my native Japanese tutor didn't speak English very well but it was still very helpful having someone to speak to in Japanese one on one on a weekly basis.
I live in the South-East and have my P's *hint hint if you need a tutor : P*
Or I can pass on the details of my Japanese tutor but she is also in the South East. 

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

Fyrefly

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2012, 10:06:35 pm »
+1
Vending machine is way better than obentou. Seriously. You can buy bread, ice cream, instant meals (cooked for you by the machine), noodles, alcohol, cigarettes, hot drinks, cold drinks, corn soup...

A discussion on obentou? Boring. A mother's parenting abilities are judged by the presentation and appeal of the obentou she prepares. If her child does not eat everything she puts in the obentou, then dishonour and shame are brought upon her and her family's name and she will be considered a bad mother by all the old women who gossip over green tea. She may only redeem herself by dancing the can can in the light of the full moon.

Disclaimer: Sometimes I forget whether I'm supposed to be typing seriously or not... I may or may not have taken the liberty of making it more interesting.
|| BComm + DipLang (Jap) @ Monash ||

aes_999

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2012, 10:19:25 pm »
0
I'm going a bit off topic here.
But i'm thinking of doing jap for my electives at monash uni.
I know that I won't be eligible for jap dip. lang,
since that'd take an extra year.
But given my circumstance (b. comm/ b.eco),
if i take Jap as my electives, how proficient could i be
at jap? Keep in mind, I haven't studied Jap at all.
B.Comm / B.Eco @ Monash 2012 - 2015

Research Assistant, Faculty of Business and Economics, Monash University

Fyrefly

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2012, 12:36:51 am »
0
I'm going a bit off topic here.
But i'm thinking of doing jap for my electives at monash uni.
I know that I won't be eligible for jap dip. lang,
since that'd take an extra year.
But given my circumstance (b. comm/ b.eco),
if i take Jap as my electives, how proficient could i be
at jap? Keep in mind, I haven't studied Jap at all.

If you use all eight of your electives for Japanese: intermediate.
If you use all eight of your electives for Japanese by going on exchange and you put in a lot of hard work: semi-native.
|| BComm + DipLang (Jap) @ Monash ||

IntoTheNewWorld

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2012, 08:15:16 pm »
0
Vending machine is way better than obentou.

Yeah I would never do obentou, but I would put conbini ahead of Vending machines.

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2012, 12:36:01 am »
0
If her child does not eat everything she puts in the obentou, then dishonour and shame are brought upon her and her family's name and she will be considered a bad mother by all the old women who gossip over green tea. She may only redeem herself by dancing the can can in the light of the full moon.

I lol'd

Back on topic:
@prelyudia the general consensus seems to be do vending machines!
Start by learning this word 自動販売機 :P

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]

sonnypls

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2012, 04:58:19 pm »
+1
I'm doing Japanese 11 & 12 at monash this year, pray for me :3

jibba

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Re: Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2012, 06:42:51 pm »
+1
I'm doing Japanese 11 & 12 at monash this year, pray for me :3
Do you know what Proficient 1 is ? ie: in terms of those levels :S
I'm a bit worried tbh, I'm very bad at kanji and don't really know keigo >.>

Also as I promised, I've made a list of verbs which I learnt solely in Year 12.
Most of the easier ones ie: 見る、歩く、聞く
are excluded!
I would appreciate if any of the senior japanese students on this forum could proof read the list as I know I make a lot of mistakes while doing these type of things. I've learnt words such as 上着 (uwagi: jacket) as 浮気(uwaki: affair) and it can be a bit awkward during conversation LOL

Here it is: http://www.mediafire.com/?855y3i2j43a57x5
Note: I was testing out japanese fonts :P, if it hurts your eyes I'll upload a version with the classic MS font upon request :) 
« Last Edit: February 14, 2012, 07:08:15 pm by jibba »

2011: Japanese SL [50] ATAR: 99.40
2012-2017: Arts/Law at Monash
My Japanese Advice Thread Q/A and advice for 2012/Future VCE Japanese Students
2013: Currently tutoring VCE Japanese. JLPT N2
2014: Exchange to Hitotsubashi University, Japan (April - August) & Seoul National University (September - December). JLPT N1
2017: Tutoring VCE Japanese/Offering VCE Japanese notes email : [email protected]