Press Release

Computer-based testing transformation for Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation (Kanken) with Pearson VUE

TOKYO, JAPAN, Aug. 3, 2016 – The Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation (Kanken) has entered into an agreement with Pearson VUE to transform its exam program from pen-and-paper to computer-based testing (CBT).

The new agreement means that Pearson VUE, the global leader in CBT, will deliver the Business Japanese Proficiency Test (BJT) at its network of highly secure computer-based testing centers across Japan, China, Taiwan, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, India, Singapore, Mexico, Brazil and France from April 2017.

The BJT is a proficiency test measuring mainly the non-Japanese examinees’ current communicative proficiency in business in the Japanese language. This test was developed for the purpose of offering globalization support for corporations and learning support for non-Japanese business people in improving their Japanese language skills. BJT is not designed for measuring Japanese language knowledge nor business knowledge but is designed instead to measure communicative skills objectively in terms of how the examinees will utilize their knowledge in processing and responding to given information.

Tetsu Ikeda, vice president of Pearson VUE Japan, said: “I am delighted that this new partnership will improve the lives and careers of Japanese-speaking students and professionals across the world especially in Asia by improving the overall testing culture through computer-based testing.”

Koji Kubo, chief executive director of the Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation (Kanken), said: “By considering the necessity of high quality and reliable backup system in order to realize the service truly beneficial for candidates and to further expand BJT globally, we decided to partner with Pearson VUE to seek their cooperation. This new transformation to CBT will mean significantly increased convenience for candidates in terms of more accessibility and flexibility for scheduling the test and receiving exam results immediately. I look forward to more people that are studying Japanese to take BJT and each and one of them to prosper in their lives.”

About Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation (Kanken)
Since its foundation in 1992, the Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation has been pursuing business mainly in administering and operating the “Japanese Kanji Proficiency Test”, publishing Kanji related books, supporting research related to Kanji and Kanji education, hosting lectures and edification events related to Japanese language and Kanji. BJT is a test originally sponsored by JETRO (Japan External Trade Organization) in 1996, however Kanken had succeeded the program in 2009 through business transfer and has been sponsoring the program ever since then. Kanken was approved by the Cabinet Office as a “public interest incorporated foundation” on April 1st 2013 and is now making efforts in further developing current business activities by defining edification and support activity, research and study activity, Japanese language nurturing activity, as three pillars of their focus. Kanken is also making efforts in activities aiming at improvement of Japanese and Kanji skills essential to social life and to widely nurture respect and awareness towards Japanese language and Kanji. In June 2016, the Kanji Museum opened in Higashiyama ward in Kyoto and has now started its operation as a hub of Japanese language and Kanji culture. More detailed information on Kanken can be found at

Media contact

Damien Fletcher
+44 (0)20 7010 2582