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The DLPT (Defence Language Proficency Test)

#1
The DLPT is the Defence Language Proficency Test.

I heard of this test a couple of months ago. I thought it might be interesting to share with anybody who is in the U.S. military and is learning Japanese on this forum. If you feel you have a great knowledge of Japanese then you should consider taking this test so that you can get around $200 - $400 a month to your military pay check. I know that reserves can make up to $500 a month and active service members can potentially make up to $1000 a month, just for knowing a couple of languages.

The test has three categories: listening, reading, and writing. It is apparently tough but if you can pass JLPT 1 or 2 then it might be a peice of cake.

When I found out about the DLPT it gave me some more motive to continue studying Japanese.

Of course there are other languages in the DLPT as well other than Japanese.

( I don't want to post anything military related because I don't want conflict but I thought this would be interesting to share. )
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#2
>.> Ah, damn. I didn't intend to start a new thread of this topic. Blargh, I should have used the "search" feature! Nooooooo!
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#3
All right, now all I have to do is join the military!

Oh wait, that's not that easy :|
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#4
I am planning on joining the military when I finish my degree in Japanese Language & Literature.. i've been checking all the branches out lately and I am pretty decided on the Air Force... I've already read about the DLPT as well and plan on taking it when I sign up in about 2 years from now. It's like the JLPT but you actually get paid for it Wink have you looked at the example DLPT test stuff? it looks like mostly newspaper type questions to me...
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#5
here are those Japanese DLPT guides: http://www.dliflc.edu/dlptguides.html
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#6
@Hashiriya

That is cool! I am in the Army. Air Force guys and gals are really polite. I am sure you would like it in the Air Force. But yeah, if you do decide to join then definiately check that DLPT out. Who doesn't want a little extra cash for something they know and enjoy doing? Smile I will take a look at those guides. Maybe it would give me some heads up.
Edited: 2010-02-22, 7:09 pm
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#7
Mmm, I'm craving a BLT now.
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#8
If you poke around the site a bit, they have a lot of free resources that appear open to anybody. Check out http://www.dliflc.edu/products.html Phone calls, article reading practice exercises, all kinds of things. The GLOSS heading says:

"G.L.O.S.S.online language lessons are developed for independent learners to provide them with the learning/teaching tools for improving their foreign language skills. GLOSS currently offers 2850 reading (RC) and listening (LC) lessons in 24 languages! More lessons are added every month… make sure you check them out."

Depending on what language you're interested in, they even have whole language teaching packages to get you started (korean, chinese).
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#9
thanks kerosan Wink
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#10
wow select source and then select view translation inside the Japanese section.. full audio and everything... nice study source to prepare for the real deal Big Grin

EDIT: this is a goldmine for all kinds of language learners... got a lot of Chinese in here if people are interested
Edited: 2010-02-23, 12:01 am
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#11
Hey guys, I'd posted in another thread somewhere that I'd let you know when I took the DLPT for the first time.

Anyway, took it a couple weeks ago for my first time after 10 months of study in Chinese and got a 3/3 (highest level without taking the advanced test, which I'm scheduled for in the next couple of months).

And GLOSS is really an excellent resource, as pointed out.
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#12
Forgot to congratulate zer0range on his accomplishment. Pretty much maxing out the lower level test on the first try has got to be something cool even for a language school grad. How did you end up doing on the spoken and upper level tests?

Anyway, the reason I'm posting is I took the DLPT today with less than stellar results. Got 1+/2 (listening/reading) which means I don't get paid extra as you need a minimum of 2/2. The levels are hard to explain, however here's a link to the pdf with the detailed level explanation on the last few pages

http://www.dliflc.edu/archive/documents/...RT-CBT.pdf

What's cool is one can request the results be converted into recommended college credit. In addition, you can take the test every six months. I think an extra two hundred dollars a month is enough motivation to aim for a 2/2 or higher next time.
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#13
Did you take the lower or upper test Nuke? What's the difference? Does the upper get you more money?
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#14
captal Wrote:Did you take the lower or upper test Nuke? What's the difference? Does the upper get you more money?
The lower level test that I took rates you from 0 to 3 (0, 0+, 1, 1+, 2, 2+, 3). If you get a 3/3 you're given the chance to take the upper level which rates you 3 to 5. As long as you're above a 2/2 you should get more money per month the higher you score.
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#15
Quote:Forgot to congratulate zer0range on his accomplishment. Pretty much maxing out the lower level test on the first try has got to be something cool even for a language school grad. How did you end up doing on the spoken and upper level tests?
Hey Nuke, coincidentally, I took my end course DLPT today... thanks for the congratulations.

As for the speaking test, I took the OPI (Oral Proficiency Interview) last week, still haven't gotten my results back, but it's almost certain that I got a 2. For Chinese at least, there have been 2 students to get a 2+ here at the DLI in the last three years... basically you have to be a. natively proficient, and b. very well educated in politics and current affairs. For instance, my two 'advanced probe' questions were something like.. "In recent years China has overtaken Japan in terms of GDP, what sort of ramifications does this have for Chinese businesses, and do you think that this truly means that China has overtaken Japan as the world's second largest economy? Please explain." and "Recently 刘晓波 has been given the Nobel Peace Prize and subsequently been jailed as a criminal... many people in China have called him a 汉奸 (Criminal against China), do you feel that his actions qualify him as such, and why?". So, this isn't just a test of your language ability, but a test of your language ability in the realm that is applicable to government jobs, ie. politics. I'll certainly let you know if I did get a 2+, but I doubt it.

The advanced DLPT, I have not had the chance to take it yet. There were some issues with my unit and the DLI.. I was told that there was some new policy concerning students not being able to test the advanced course and stay enrolled at the DLI, so I was told to wait until I graduated to test. I will hopefully be testing the advanced DLPT before Christmas.

Quote:Anyway, the reason I'm posting is I took the DLPT today with less than stellar results. Got 1+/2 (listening/reading) which means I don't get paid extra as you need a minimum of 2/2.
Don't feel too down on yourself, the DLPT is difficult mostly because multiple choice tests are a skill in and of itself. I have many classmates that are horrible in Chinese, but scored 2+/2+'s or even 3/2+'s, because they've been working on test taking skills for hours a day. Also, the DLPT is very narrow in many respects, and so institutes like the DLI basically turn into just teaching to the DLPT... which is a whole different topic. You've probably experienced the same thing in other areas of the military... get the 'training' done just so you can say you're 'qualified' and nobody's ass is on the line.

Quote:the upper level which rates you 3 to 5.
It actually only takes you to 4. 5 is what they give PHDs who are particularly good at bullshitting that take the OPI.
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#16
Thanks for the update and the info. Even with 50+ weeks of study, getting 3/3 has got to be a rare situation.

So, anything more to add on how the DLI or other students reacted to your learning methods? Any advice to offer about learning languages now based on what you've experienced?
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#17
Quote:Thanks for the update and the info. Even with 50+ weeks of study, getting 3/3 has got to be a rare situation.
3/3's are rare, but they are becoming less rare. One of my good buddies in my class also got a 3/3 yesterday (He got a 2+/2+ the first time). However, there's a big difference between my 3/3 and his, and that is it's been over 6 months since I studied anything provided by the DLI, so my ability covers a much, much broader area of the language. (For instance, we watched a DBZ episode while we were waiting for his Wife the other day and his comprehension was horrible.)

Anyway, I'm scheduled for the advanced test on Monday and Tuesday, I'll let you know how it goes..

Quote:So, anything more to add on how the DLI or other students reacted to your learning methods? Any advice to offer about learning languages now based on what you've experienced?
I got interested in learning languages after reading ajatt.com, I'd always thought I could never learn a language, and the advice he gave sounded so interesting that I just had to try it myself to see if it would work. Then I heard about the DLI and the opportunity to get paid to learn a language... too perfect to pass up.

So, I came into the program here already knowing exactly what I was going to do, and I wasn't going to be dissuaded by anyone, because more than half of my motivation was simply wanting to test out this guy's crazy theories.

Basically, on the language side of it, it worked like a charm. Except for one of my classmates who grew up in Taiwan, I was always the best student in class in every respect - vocabulary, listening, reading, writing, and even in all speaking aspects (grammar, accent, flow, tones, etc..) (it took me about 3 months to get better at listening than the guy who was raised in Taiwan, 6-7 for speaking). Right now, I am confident that out of all of the students to ever come through the DLI with 0 Chinese knowledge beforehand, I have the best listening, reading and writing.

On the military side of it, I had a ton of problems. Teachers weren't letting me listen to real Chinese in class, told me my methods wouldn't work, instead of answering questions that I had about words or sentences for my Anki deck, they'd tell me why I should instead just study the textbooks provided, I needed to study grammar, etc... etc... It got really bad and lead to me getting yelled at a lot by my unit. I hung in there though and eventually, once my first DLPT came through and I was already at a 3/3 level they started to work with me. About 4 months ago they actually moved me out of class and into an empty desk in a teacher's office where I did whatever Chinese related activities I wanted to all day long - as far as I, and the Department Chair who's been at the DLI for over 20 years know, this has never happened here before. (Not trying to puff myself up, just saying that these methods are so much more effective than commonly used methods that comparisons are unfair.)

The students reactions ran the spectrum from telling me that I was going to burn out a few months in and not be able to study anymore to asking me to tutor them. Most people just thought I was a little crazy and had no life.

Advice...

You need to take what ajatt.com espouses and tweak it to fit yourself, but the basics are there - if you want to get very good at a language very fast, you can't beat full audio immersion and SRS.

I'm a little torn on speaking... I was forced to speak Chinese from day one, and pretty much spoke Chinese exclusively with the teachers from very early on, so in this regard the experiment was ruined, but it would not surprise me if you could attain the same speaking level in the same amount of time with 1/100 of the speaking. I do encourage people to speak and I don't believe it can hurt.

With hanzi/kanji, I think people get hung up a little bit, and maybe RTK people a little more than usual. Get RTK out of the way ASAP and get into real language. Writing is important, but no matter what you do, you're going to forget characters... the office that I worked in, there were two PHD's from mainland China that regularly forgot how to write rare-ish characters. Also, I've seen in the last year in a half many dozens of students that could read newspapers with little to no effort, but couldn't write simple things like 想要. So, unless writing itself is your goal, skip RTK.. get a basic grounding in radicals and move on - context and repetition will take care of the rest. If writing is your goal, however, RTK will give you the tools you need.
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#18
Finished the upper level DLPT today, got a 3+ in listening and 3 in reading. A little disappointed with the reading but I'll get another crack at it in 6 months.
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#19
Congratulations. Don't forget to submit the paperwork for ACE recommended college credits. I think a 3+/3 is about 30 credit hours (which one can argue translates to 1500 study hours).

Good skills to you on becoming a DLI instructor. Most enjoyable time in the military for me was an electronic instructor for three years.
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#20
Congrats for totally freaking out the DLI instructors. Big Grin I'm sure they're all sitting in the back somewhere, scratching their heads.

As for the whole "Production Taboo," I think it's BS. I tried to hold back on production (speaking and writing), and all it did for me was ruin my speaking/writing skills. Now I have to take extra time to focus on those to bring them to an acceptable level. I can read/listen just fine, but I have a hell of a time holding a conversation or writing a letter.
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#21
That's an amazing story zero, congrats man! I'm in AFROTC right now and I hope I get sent through the whole DLI thing sometime in the future... Wish I could get to pick Japanese and go at it hardcore like that but I hear getting Japanese is next to impossible these days.
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#22
Quote:Good skills to you on becoming a DLI instructor. Most enjoyable time in the military for me was an electronic instructor for three years.
Just to clarify, they didn't make me an instructor (students have gone from student to instructor before, but it has more to do with the needs of your unit and your rank). They just didn't know what to do with me, I clearly didn't need to be in class, but because of the bureaucracy here I was still required to come to class for 6 months. Since I'd proven that if I was left alone I would diligently study they put me in a teacher's office and let me study by myself.

Quote:That's an amazing story zero, congrats man! I'm in AFROTC right now and I hope I get sent through the whole DLI thing sometime in the future... Wish I could get to pick Japanese and go at it hardcore like that but I hear getting Japanese is next to impossible these days.
99% of the officers that come through here are in the FAO (Foreign Area Officer) program, I would recommend you looking into it if you haven't already. Studying at the DLI as an officer (especially if you are O-3 or O-4) is much more pleasant than coming in enlisted.
Edited: 2010-12-01, 12:11 am
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#23
Just another small update.. took the upper level DLPT again and scored a 4 in listening and a 3 in reading.
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#24
Great job RideHer!
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#25
awesome... I hope to do the same with Japanese in the future
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