Top 10 Online Japanese Lessons

By Marjorie Gutierrez | Created January 27, 2021

This article serves as a guide on Online Japanese Lessons for all levels. This article is a part of our extensive series of guides on studying japanese.

Top 10 online Japanese lessons

Learning a new language is like having a new soul, having a spiritual adventure, and it’s also like traveling without the need to leave our comfortable space. It may feel like hard work, almost the same as climbing a mountain. But once we reach its peak, it will enhance our view of reality and all of our efforts will be worth it.

This 2021, we can start the year by learning a new language! If you love Japan, now is the perfect time to study and prepare for that dream trip! If you love watching anime, and you are already tired of having to look up and down all the time because you have to read the subtitles, then this is the sign that you are waiting to start taking online Japanese lessons

Prepare to cross it off your New Year's resolutions list and take a look at BFF Tokyo's carefully selected list of Top 10 online Japanese lessons and courses!

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    Questions to Ask Yourself Before Taking Lessons

    What are my priorities?

    Taking online Japanese lessons may feel a bit overwhelming at first. There are a lot of key points to consider upon deciding what kind of school you will likely enroll in. It is important to ask yourself questions about key points such as: 

     

    • objective (will you be studying Japanese for business or everyday living?) 

     

    • tuition fee (do the number of hours and quality of lessons justify the cost?) 

     

    • personal initiative (how many lessons should you take a week and how much self-study are you willing to do?)

     

    online-japanese-lessons-intro

    What kind of lesson should I take?

    Usually, the best way to learn a new language is through language immersion- however, due to the global pandemic Covid-19, online Japanese private and group lessons became a better and more affordable alternative to in-person classes. Due to the high demand for this type of lesson, the competition between schools and teachers providing this service increased immensely. Here at BFF Tokyo, we carefully selected and generated a list of Top 10 online Japanese lessons and courses!

     

    Many schools also offer both private and group lessons. This gives you options to choose from according to your preferences and learning habits.

     

    • If you are a person who is looking for interaction with other students and teachers, group lessons are the best option.

     

    • However, if you want to have one on one sessions with a teacher who can give you direct feedback, definitely go for the private lessons. 

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    Private Online Japanese Lessons

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    1. Coto Japanese Academy

    Recommended for: people who want a speaking-based lesson and affordable JLPT lessons

    Official Website: https://online.cotoacademy.com/index.php

    Price: A 50-minute private lesson is around 4,200 yen ($38)

    Google Rating: 4.8/5 (352 reviews)

     

    About the School:

     

    Coto Japanese Academy is a Japanese Language School based in Tokyo and Yokohama. The school was founded in 2000. In 2014, the school’s name was changed to Iidabashi Language Academy. Their motto is “Have fun learning Japanese.” Coto is a school that gives great importance and emphasis to improving the student’s conversation skills. The company has over 20 years of experience making it one of Tokyo’s best part-time language schools that can offer high quality and enjoyable in-person and currently, online Japanese lessons as well.

     

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

     

    Coto Academy offers a broad range of online Japanese lessons: from practicing words and phrases you have already learned, improving fluency to preparing for JLPT exams. The school’s professionally trained and certified language instructors will help you in achieving your Japanese language goals. 

    • The online lesson lasts for 50 minutes.
    • Skype or Zoom can be used for online classes.
    • Online private lessons are available as well as small group classes.

     

     

    Our Takeaway: 

     

    Coto Academy is a highly rated Japanese language school by students as we have researched and read blogs online. We always read good comments from satisfied students! They also manage a blog that offers free materials to give new students a feel of what taking online Japanese lessons are like. They also post about what life’s like living in Japan and the country’s cultures and traditions. Lastly, you can also check out their Youtube channel to give you an impression of their teachers and lessons! Overall the school’s key points are:

     

    • A great choice for speaking based free talk lessons.
    • A great choice for affordable online JLPT lessons.
    • Reasonable price for the quality. Here is the lesson fee information.
    • More modern than other Japanese schools in terms of study materials and teaching style.
    online-japanese-lessons-japan-switch

    2. Japan Switch

    Recommended for: people who want to focus on conversation with engaging and natural lessons, also a great option for beginners to lower intermediate

    Official Website: https://www.japanswitch.com/online-lessons-at-japan-switch/

    Price: A 50-minute private lesson is 3,000 yen ($29)

    Google Rating: 4.7/5 (30 reviews)

     

    About the School:

    In addition to providing awesome guides and resources for free for foreigners in Japan, BFF Tokyo also runs Japan Switch which offers the most affordable in-person Japanese lessons in Tokyo.  They have expanded their popular daytime lessons online in 2020. Several unique aspects of the school are: 

     

    • They help students save money by providing guides on how to learn Japanese outside of the classroom.
    • They only cater to English speaking students and the teachers are friendly and are used to helping students from English speaking countries.
    • Their goal is for students to develop confidence while taking lessons and eventually graduate to learning on their own.

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Japan Switch has two types of online Japanese lessons: a small online group lesson and a supportive online private lesson. The online group lesson has a maximum number of 4 students in one class to increase the student’s talk time and avoid connection problems that bigger online classes usually experience. The online private lesson is student-centered and puts the student’s interests first so if you want to be more objective and want to focus on a specific topic, this would be a great option for you.

     

    • Small online group classes. (4 students max)
    • Supportive online private lessons. 
    • The online Japanese lessons last for 50 minutes.

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Japan Switch has a 4.7 rating on Google with a lot of positive feedback and happy students. Their Facebook page also provides a lot of information and good reviews from satisfied learners! Knowing Japanese is simply not enough and Japan Switch offers that day-to-day practice conversation to students to help you make the switch of living in Japan comfortably without any language barriers. With an 80% student and 20% teacher talk time ratio, you will reach your Japanese speaking goals in no time! 

     

    • Offers the most affordable Japanese lessons in Tokyo.
    • A great choice for speaking-based online Japanese lessons.
    • A great choice for beginners to lower intermediate students.
    • An excellent option for online group lessons.
    online Japanese lessons Akira

    3. Akira Japanese School

    Recommended for: people with busy schedules and wants to focus on grammar

    Price: A 50-minute private lesson is 4,800 yen ($46)

    Official Website: https://akiraojs.tokyo

    Google Rating: 5/5 (5 reviews)

     

    About the School:

     

    Akira Japanese Language School has been offering online Japanese lessons since 2019. The school is based in Minato-ku, Tokyo. Their company’s name “Akira” means sunlight in Japanese, so the concept of their lessons is to brighten up expat’s life in Tokyo by helping with the practice of the language. The main focus of the school is providing language practice used 

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

     

    Akira Japanese Language School suggests personal programs depending on the students’ needs. They also base their online Japanese lessons on SLA (Second Language Acquisition Research) which ensures the efficiency of learning a second language. The school also uses a style called “flipped learning” where they give grammar patterns in advance and practice them during the class.

     

     

    Our Takeaway: 

     

    Akira Japanese Language School lessons are conducted in English so it is a good choice for beginners. Due to their scientific approach in conducting lessons, advanced preparation is needed before the class. The school is also a good choice for people who have a busy schedule because they provide lessons from 7 am to 11 pm. 

    online Japanese lessons we languages

    4. We Japanese School

    Recommended for: people who want to focus on a specific lesson

    Price: A 40-minute lesson is around 4,000 yen ($38)

    Official Website: https://we-japan.com

    Google Rating: 4.4/5 (15 reviews)

     

    About the School:

    We Japanese Language School was founded in 1996. They are based in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo. The school is known for providing students with quality Japanese lessons. They also have a “student-centered” type of learning. Since students have different goals and reasons for learning Japanese, their teachers tailor the lessons based on the students’ needs. They also provide activities such as ‘Bilingual Classes’ and ‘Exchange Programs’.

     

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    We Japanese Language School offers private online lessons and group lessons with 3-5 students per class. Their private online Japanese lessons are diverse to meet the individual needs of the students. They also provide special training programs for corporations. While their online group classes are separated into 3 categories: Daily Conversation, Business Conversation, and Test Preparation. Depending on the students’ language needs, they have a lot of choices to choose from.

     

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    We Japanese Language School works to communicate with their students so they can build a suitable lesson plan for each specific person. Depending on your objective, they provide 5 courses to choose from: Basic JapaNEEDS Course, Kanji Mastering Course, J-style Business Course, Japanese Culture Lovers Course, and JLPT Preparation Course. So if you are looking for a school that offers specific types of courses, then We Japanese Language School would be a good option for you. Please take a look at their website to know more!

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    Group Online Japanese Lessons

    online Japanese lessons japan switch-group

    Japan Switch

    Recommended for: people who want to focus on conversation with engaging and natural lessons, also a great option for beginners to lower intermediate, best option for group classes

    Price: A 50-minute group lesson is 1,500 yen ($14) 

    Official Website: https://www.japanswitch.com/online-lessons-at-japan-switch/

    Class Capacity: 4 students max

    Google Rating: 4.7/5 (30 reviews)

     

    About the School:

    In addition to providing awesome guides and resources for free for foreigners in Japan, BFF Tokyo also runs Japan Switch which offers the most affordable in-person Japanese lessons in Tokyo.  They have expanded their popular daytime lessons online in 2020. Several unique aspects of the school are: 

     

    • They help students save money by providing guides on how to learn Japanese outside of the classroom.
    • They only cater to English speaking students and the teachers are friendly and used to helping students from English-speaking countries.
    • Their goal is for students to develop confidence while taking lessons and eventually graduate to learning on their own.

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Japan Switch has two types of online Japanese lessons: a small online group lesson and a supportive online private lesson. The online group lesson has a maximum number of 4 students in one class to the student’s talk time and avoids connection problems that bigger online classes usually experience. The online private lesson is student-centered and puts the student’s interests first so if you want to be more objective and want to focus on a specific topic, this would be a great option for you.

     

    • Small online group classes. (4 students max)
    • Supportive online private lessons. 
    • The online Japanese lessons last for 50 minutes.

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Japan Switch has a 4.7 rating on Google with a lot of positive feedback and happy students. Their Facebook page also provides a lot of information and good reviews from satisfied learners! Knowing Japanese is simply not enough and Japan Switch offers that day-to-day practice conversation to students to help you make the switch of living in Japan comfortably without any language barriers. With an 80% student and 20% teacher talk time ratio, you will reach your Japanese speaking goals in no time! 

     

    • Offers the most affordable Japanese lessons in Tokyo.
    • A great choice for speaking-based online Japanese lessons.
    • A great choice for beginners to lower intermediate students.
    • An excellent option for online group lessons.
    online Japanese lessons genki

    5. Genki Japanese and Culture School

    Recommended for: people who feel comfortable speaking Japanese throughout the whole class, good for intermediate to advanced

    Price: A 100-minute group class is 3,000 yen ($29)

    Official Website: https://www.genkijacs.com

    Google Rating: 4.7/5 (43 reviews)

    Class Capacity: 6 students max

     

    About the School:

     

    Genki Japanese and Culture School is a language school based in Shinjuku, Tokyo. They also have locations in Fukuoka and Kyoto. It was founded in 2013 and is described as a “study abroad school for foreigners who want to study Japanese in Japan”. Their classes are conducted in 100% Japanese from beginner level to advance. They specialize in communicative Japanese aimed at English speakers which are mainly European. Visa and accommodation assistance are available for students studying in-person at this school but due to Covid-19, they updated their courses and started offering online Japanese lessons for people who can’t make it to Japan.

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

     

    Genki Japanese and Culture School’s online experience is closely similar to their in-person lessons. The students can still talk to their classmates and teachers, take tests, take part in pair work and receive feedback on their improvement. The classes are divided into small groups depending on the student’s level. They also follow Japan’s Standard Time and class availability varies on the continent: 8 am to 10 am for North, Central, and South America, 10 am to 12 pm for Asia and Oceania, and 6 pm to 8 pm for Europe, Africa, and the Middle-East. Each group lesson has 2 to 6 members and they conduct their lessons via Zoom.

     

    Our Takeaway: 

     

    Genki Japanese and Culture School is known for fusing Japanese and European environment in the class. If you are from the Western part of the world, taking group lessons would feel more comfortable because 90% of their students are from countries like the US, Europe, and Australia. One thing to keep in mind is they use 100% Japanese during the class. They also provide short-term and long-term courses depending on the student’s language needs.

    online Japanese lessons mlc

    6. Meguro Language Center

    Recommended for: people who want to focus on JLPT

    Price: A 90-minute group lesson is 3,960 yen ($38)

    Official Website: https://www.mlcjapanese.co.jp

    Google Rating: 4.1/5 (25 reviews)

    Class Capacity: 4 students max

     

    About the School:

    Meguro Language Center is a Japanese Language School located in Meguro, Tokyo. It was established in 1990 and since then, they have taught students coming from different countries all over the world. They provide in-person and online Japanese lessons to English speaking students. They have no registration fee and they also conduct free trial lessons. The school also offers free lesson materials on its website and other social media accounts.

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Meguro Language Center offers courses such as private, group, and company classes for their online Japanese lessons. The private lessons are more flexible and more student-centered while the Japanese classes have 3 main categories: grammar and conversation, JLPT, and Business Japanese. The grammar and conversation category has 3 levels: beginner, high-beginner, and pre-intermediate. The JLPT category has 2 levels: N1 and N2. Lastly, Business Japanese has an advanced business course. Online private lessons are conducted within 45 minutes while online group lessons are conducted within 90 minutes.

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Meguro Language Center is a good option for people who want to focus on Business Japanese. They also construct their own teaching materials such as worksheets and quizzes that are effectively used to constantly reinforce what their students are learning. This is especially good for people who want to practice for the JLPT, the learning materials they provide would make the preparation easier and more comprehensible.

    online Japanese lessons human academy

    7. Human Academy Japanese Language School

    Recommended for: people who want a diverse school that focuses on JLPT

    Price: A 90-minute group lesson is 1,375 yen ($13)

    Official Website: https://hajl.athuman.com/e/

    Google Rating: 3.3/5 (73 reviews)

    Class Capacity: 9 students max

     

    About the School:

    Human Academy Japanese Language School campuses are located in Tokyo, Osaka, and Saga. The first school which was in Tokyo was founded in 1991. They have been teaching thousands of students to help them speak Japanese in their work and lives. The school offers Japanese language education, career guidance, and test preparation courses. They also provide two ways of learning: first is practicing practical Japanese conversation to improve the student’s usage and fluency with the language. The second one is providing elective lessons to build up each of the student’s skills and capacity. 

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Human Academy Japanese Language School offers different courses depending on your language needs. Although the school is not offering group classes, students can focus more on their goals in private lessons because they are conducted on a one-to-one basis. Their online Japanese lessons have a wide variety from Comprehensive Japanese Beginner Level to Advance Business Japanese. What makes the Human Academy different from other online schools is they focus on Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening which is a good option for students looking for comprehensive learning in the comfort of their own home.

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Human Academy Japanese Language School is a good option for students who are keen on studying for the JLPT through the school's extensive knowledge in conducting lessons to JLPT takers who have successfully passed the examination. Students from more than 40 countries have attended the school making the instructors used to teach students with different cultures, languages, and accents.

    Online Japanese Lessons Only

    online Japanese lessons nihogo pro

    8. Nihongo-Pro

    Recommended for: people who want to study at their own phase with customized lessons

    Price: A 50-minute private lesson is 3,200 yen ($31)

    Official Website: https://www.nihongo-pro.com

    Google Rating: no available google reviews

     

    About the Company:

    Nihongo-Pro is a company operated by Horizon Web Services, LLC which is based in Florida in the United States. It was established in 2011 and has continued offering online Japanese lessons to its students coming from all over the world. The lessons are tailored based on the student’s language goals and learning style. The instructors are also based from different parts of the world so they offer their services 24 hours a day. 

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Nihongo-Pro offers private online Japanese lessons from all levels including Introductory to Advanced Japanese lessons, as well as JLPT N5 to N1. The teachers also guide the students using custom lesson materials making the learning experience similar to a real classroom. They also introduced the “ProPad” which is a tool to help students write in Japanese. 

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Nihongo-Pro is a good website to learn Japanese if you want to study in your own phase. The teachers, the time, and the lessons are very flexible to match the student’s demands. Their 10 years of experience in teaching online Japanese lessons have helped a lot of learners who cannot travel directly to Japan to study in a university. Nihongo-Pro is a good alternative to attending Japanese schools and a great way to reinforce the language you have already been exposed to.  

    online Japanese lessons japatalk

    9. Japatalk

    Recommended for: people who want a relaxed lesson and learn day-to-day expressions

    Price: A 50-minute private lesson is 1000 yen ($10)

    Official Website: https://www.japatalk.com/en/

    Google Rating: no available google reviews

     

    About the Company:

    Japatalk is a company that offers online Japanese lessons to foreign nationals all over the world. It is run by Asia Internet Service Inc founded in 2005 and based in Oita City, Japan. Their online school offers natural communication with teachers who can teach you how to use everyday Japanese. The school’s system is point-based. For instance, if you buy 1,000 points for 1,000 yen (approximately) you can choose an instructor through the company’s database and select your preferred date and time. The price may vary but the average rate is 500 points for a 25-minute lesson.

     

    About their online Japanese lessons: 

    Japatalk offers “heartfelt” lessons and genuine communication with their teachers. They do not have a specific course that you can enroll in but they have many lesson types that you can choose from such as free conversation, pronunciation lessons and you can even heart-to-heart talk. Each lesson's style varies depending on what the students want to learn. Japatalk uses Skype to conduct their lessons and 1 lesson lasts for 25 minutes but the students can take 2 lessons in a row. 

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    Japatalk is a good option for people who want to practice their Japanese in day-to-day conversation. Especially for those who are studying Japanese but lacking the ability and chance to speak with a native Japanese speaker. The school may not be a good option for absolute beginners but beneficial for people who can communicate in Japanese. There is no syllabus used so the students have the freedom of what type of lesson they want to have. 

    Digital Japanese Lessons

    10. NativShark

    Recommended for: people who want solo learning, have a good motivation to self-study.

    Price: A yearly plan is around 1600 yen per month ($15.49)

    Official Website: https://www.nativshark.com/bfftokyo

    Google Rating: no available google reviews

     

    About the Company:

    NativShark is an E-learning based company founded in 2016 with headquarters in Fukuoka, Japan, and Bellevue in the United States. They are creating the most comprehensive system to help achieve your language goals. As of the moment, they are solely focused on helping you reach your Japanese proficiency through their extensive, level-appropriate, and consistent online Japanese lessons. They have successfully created a language platform that is so comprehensive but so easy to use at the same time. With a simple click on the “study now” button, you can reach milestones as you practice and study Japanese with their engaging lessons every day!

     

    About their Digital Lessons: 

    NativShark is all about simplicity. Learning a new language may be overwhelming at first, but Nativshark’s digital lessons are smartly arranged and beginner-friendly. It is divided into 4 phases: first, you will be starting with the fundamentals. Then, everyday conversation. After that, further grammar patterns and vocabulary. And finally, gaining confidence with a “near-native fluency.” You can all accomplish this day by day as you progress with the lessons. NativShark also uses a structure called Cii (Contextual Iterative Immersion) which makes learning new concepts easier and more comprehensible by slowly introducing new information and using it in context to retain the idea more successfully. 

     

    Our Takeaway: 

    NativShark offers great all-in-one digital lessons for people trying to make the leap in learning Japanese. If you have a hard time starting or being consistent with your studies, Nativshark would be a great help for you. Reaching milestones is a very rewarding experience and it keeps you on your toes to study every day. In addition to adding a mobile app, they are continuing to update and improve their lessons!

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    Final Remarks - Online Japanese Lessons

    Otsukaresamadesu (thank you so much and great job) for making it until the end of our top 10 list! I hope you found useful information when taking online Japanese lessons that are perfect for your schedule, budget, and preferences! Ganbatte kudasai! (good luck!) 

     

    Check out these awesome articles that can help you decide what mode of learning would work best for you.

     

    Guide to Choosing Online vs Offline Japanese Lessons

    Guide to Choosing Group or Private Japanese Lessons

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