What is the JFT-Basic?

JFT-Basic website (Japanese, English)

1 Objectives of the Test

The Japan Foundation Test for Basic Japanese (JFT-Basic) seeks to measure the level of Japanese language proficiency needed by foreign nationals about to reside in Japan mainly for work, to communicate in everyday life situations. It is used to assess whether they have the Japanese language proficiency to be able to engage in everyday conversation to a certain extent and handle daily life without difficulties. The test evaluates Japanese language competence based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, teaching, assessment (CEFR) and the JF Standard for Japanese-Language Education.

2 Target of the Test

This test is for foreign nationals who are not native speakers of Japanese. In particular, it is aimed at foreign nationals about to reside in Japan mainly for work.

3 Testing Method

This test is conducted through Computer-Based Testing (CBT). Questions are set and answered on computers at test centers in each country. In booths, test-takers answer on the computer screen based on questions displayed on the screen and audio played through the headphones.

The test questions and choices are displayed on the central area of the computer screen. In addition, the section name, test name, time remaining and status of answers are displayed on the borders of the screen.

Take the Test

Please see the Japan Foundation website and official Facebook account of JFT-Basic for details.

For inquiries about the test reservation, please contact Prometric Customer Service Center:

【IMPORTANT NOTICE】Updated: May 15, 2023

JFT-Basic Test will no longer be offered in PHJ02 (MD BUNSHO UPSKILLS OPC.,Mandaluyong City) .


Manila: 【PHJ01】Prometric Test Center c/o Ateneo de Manila University (2F Ateneo De Manila University – Salcedo Campus, 130 HV Dela Costa St., Salcedo Village, Makati City, Metro Manila)

Cebu:  【PHJ03】TRAIN, EDUC & DEV CONS INC (SUITE 308 Centro Maximo D Jakosalem St, Cebu City)

Davao:  【PHJ04】Horizon Psychological and Testing Services (Att Commercial Complex, D-4b Avancena St., cor. J Camus Ext., Baranagay 9-A, Davao City)

Fee PHP2,010(Philippine Peso)
Payment method ・Credit card payment on  the Prometric’s registration website
・Credit card payment online using Voucher Express (Voucher Express is a website where you can order test tickets online. To use it, you have to apply for an account in advance.)
・Purchase a test ticket by cash payment at the test venue.*Please check “Test Centers (Venues) status” for the latest information. 
Personal Identification Please bring any one of the following personal identification.
3.GSIS E-Card
4.Philippine Postal ID Card
5.Driver’s License (LTO: The Land Transportation Office)
6.Professional regulation commission

※  Some change may occur to do unforseeable circumstances. Please access the Prometric’s registration website to check test dates and make a reservation online:


Procedures for Individual Application

Here is the flow of individual Application.

Access the Prometric’s registration website and obtain a Prometric ID

Procedures for Group Application

Here is the flow of Group Application.

Contact the Prometric contact center by email to request for group application for your desired period and number of persons
E-mail address:groupreg@prometric.com
(When sending an e-mail, please enter a half-width character “@” instead of a full-width character “@.” ).



Can I apply as a group?

Yes, you can. Please visit Steps from Application to Testing for the procedures for group application.

Is there a limit to the number of people who can take the test at one time?

There is a limited number of slots per cycle (every two months) of tests and also limited number of slots per test day. If your preferred date is full, please reserve the test on a different date. The status of reservations can be found on Prometric’s registration website.

Does the Japan Foundation provide support for applications or act as a representative for applications?

The Japan Foundation only sponsors the JFT-Basic test. All matters related to registration, payment, and examination for  the JFT-Basic are handled by the Prometric Center. If you have any questions please contact the Prometric Customer Service Center.

How should I study for the test? Are there any learning materials?

Please refer to Hint for Learning page for the e-learning materials that are available to help you prepare for taking the JFT-Basic; Sample Questions have also been made available for practicing how to answer questions in the JFT-Basic.
In addition, we have developed a new series of Can-do Statements for foreign nationals who are not native speakers of Japanese. These statements, each beginning with “I can …” describing an ability to complete a communicative task, are called the “JF Can-dos for Life in Japan ” and outline the fundamental Japanese skills required for everyday life for foreign nationals living in Japan. Also new Japanese language learning resources that set these Can-dos as learning goals will be available online in late March 2020. Learners can firmly acquire practical language skills through listening and conversation using downloadable audio files, as well as reading comprehension activities using material mirroring real-life usage. These resources can be extensively used not only by people studying for the JFT-Basic but also by anyone studying the Japanese language at the beginner level. A suggested syllabus and learning material samples are currently available online.

Are questions of past tests published or made available to the public?

There are currently no plans to do so but you may find Sample Questions in the JFT-Basic website.

I have a question about the day of the test. (what to bring, venue, flow from registration until the end of the test, etc.)

For inquiries on matters related to the day of the test (what to bring, venue, flow from registration until the end of the test, etc.), please refer to the registration website or inquire with the Prometric Customer Service Center.

During the test, is it possible to review questions that I have already answered if there is still time remaining?

For the Script and Vocabulary, Conversation and Expression, and Listening Comprehension sections, it is possible to review and amend your answers if you have completed all questions in a section and time remains before moving to the next section. In the Listening Comprehension section, once you move on to the next question, it will not be possible to return to previous questions.

How are the test results presented?

Test results include the total score, and the assessment results based on the score. The range of the total score is from 10 to 250 points. If the total score is at or above the passing score (200 points), the examinee is assessed to have reached a level of Japanese language proficiency to be able to engage in everyday conversation to a certain extent and handle daily life without difficulties.

Is there a minimum score set for each section?

There is no minimum score for each section. The total for all four sections is calculated and if the test-taker has scored more than 200 points, they are deemed to have the Japanese language proficiency to be able to engage in everyday conversation to a certain extent and handle daily life without difficulties.

When will I know the test results?

On the day of the test, the test results (total score and assessment results) will be displayed on the computer screen that you took the test on, after the test is completed. In addition, the notification of assessment results will be issued on the registration website within 5 business days from the test date. Please log in and check the registration website.

How do I obtain an official notification of results?

The notification of assessment results can be viewed on the registration website within 5 business days from the test date. Please log in and check the registration website. Print and use this if you need a paper copy of the notification of assessment results. If you cannot find it on the registration website, please inquire with Prometric Customer Service Center.

What can I use the test results for?

The results of this test can be used to provide evidence of Japanese language proficiency when applying for the certificate of eligibility for residence in Japan under the status of “Specified Skilled Worker (i).”

Can JFT-Basic be used to obtain any visa status other than “Specified Skilled Worker (i)” or to find employment?

Currently, the JFT-Basic cannot be used to obtain any visa other than the “Specified Skilled Worker (i).” For the documents required to obtain another visa status, please see the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan.
With regard to the use of JFT-Basic for employment at companies, schools, or etc., please confirm with the company/school whether they acknowledge the test as a certificate.

Do the test results have an expiration date?

The JFT-Basic test results do not have an expiration date.

What is the “Specified Skilled Worker” visa status?

It is a visa status that was established with the aim of accepting foreign nationals with certain skills or expertise as workers in Japan. There are two types: Specified Skilled Worker (i) and Specified Skilled Worker (ii). Please visit the following websites for details.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs website (in Japanese)
Ministry of Justice website (in Japanese)
Ministry of Justice document (in English)

How is the JFT-Basic related to the “Specified Skilled Worker” residence status?

To be eligible for the Specified Skilled Worker (i) residence status, you must pass a skills test of your relevant field and a test of Japanese language proficiency (those who have successfully completed Technical Intern Training (ii) are exempted from taking both tests). The JFT-Basic qualifies as the Japanese language test requirement. Note that JLPT N4 certificate or higher is also accepted as proof of Japanese language proficiency at the level required for Specified Skilled Worker (i).

Does the Japan Foundation also implement skills exams?

No. Skills tests in each fields are conducted by the relevant ministry, agency, or by an implementing organization designated by the authority. Information about each skills exam available can be found on the portal site of the Ministry of Justice.
■Ministry of Justice website “Test Information” (in Japanese)

When and where are the skills tests conducted?

The skills exams are conducted by the relevant ministry, agency, or by an implementing organization designated by the authority. There are 14 applicable industries, and each with its own skills test(s). Please check the websites of the ministries, agencies, or organizations for the schedule of their skills tests. The following is the link to the testing information portal site created by the Ministry of Justice.
Testing information at the Ministry of Justice website(in Japanese).

Under the Specified Skilled Worker system there are accepted 14 industries. The Japanese that is used will probably differ from depending on the profession. Does the content of the JFT-Basic test differ according to each field?

As JFT-Basic is a test that assesses whether test-takers have sufficiently proficiency in Japanese (Around A2 level, using the necessary “ability to engage in everyday conversation to a certain extent and handle daily life without difficulties,”) there are no differences in content between fields. However, separate industries may require a separate Japanese language exam based on the industry’s jargon. Please check the appropriate pages for more information.

Other than JFT-Basic and JLPT Level N4 or higher, are there any other Japanese language proficiency tests that can be used to apply for Specified Skilled Worker (i) status?

Currently, only the JFT-Basic and JLPT (N4 and above) are accepted by the ministries and agencies that are responsible for the 14 industry fields when applying for Specified Skilled Worker (i) visa status.


How to Study

Getting Started (What to Study)

The JFT-Basic measures your language ability for level A2, based on The JF-Standard for Japanese-Language Education.

If you are just starting, take the free online course for A1-1 (Katsudoo) to get you started speaking Japanese. Once you have mastered that, take the second half, A1-2 (Katsudoo).

Now that you have some Japanese vocabulary and expressions under your belt, take the Hiragana and Katakana courses so you can see how they are  written down. Being able to read Japanese characters will help your life go smoothly in Japan. Kanji is also a very useful writing system that you could   familiarize yourself with very early on.

As soon as you become confident with your Japanese characters, try the integrated A1-1 (Katsudoo and Rikai) and after that try A1-2 (Katsudoo and Rikai). You can also enroll in the free Reading Course to see if you can apply what you have learned in A1.

Now that you are A1 level, you can take the integrated A2-1, A2-2, A2-3, and A2-4 courses. Watch videos and read articles at this level with Hirogaru.

Check your language ability level in A2 at anytime with this Level Check Test.

All of the online courses above can be accessed free of charge and done at your own pace. But if you prefer studying with classmates and meeting a teacher regularly, feel free to join the courses that we offer at The Japan Foundation Manila (browse through our website, and follow us on Facebook).