Tag Archives: civics

USCIS Implements New Naturalization/Citizenship Test

Following about 2 years of testing, USCIS has revised and implemented a new Test, as part of the Naturalization process.

The revised test, with an emphasis on the fundamental concepts of American democracy and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship, will help encourage citizenship applicants to learn and identify with the basic values we all share as Americans.

According to USCIS, the redesign process was to ensure that naturalization applicants have uniform, consistent testing experiences nationwide, and that the civics test can effectively assess whether applicants have a meaningful understanding of U.S. government and history. Following a basic U.S. history and civics curriculum, the new test now serves as an important instrument to encourage civic learning and patriotism among prospective citizens.

Which Test Do I Take?

An applicant who:

* Files the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400, BEFORE October 1, 2008, and is scheduled for his or her naturalization interview ON or AFTER October 1, 2008 up until October 1, 2009, can choose to take the old test or the new test.
* Files the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400, ON or AFTER October 1, 2008, will take the new test.
* Is scheduled for his or her naturalization interview ON or AFTER October 1, 2009, regardless of when he or she filed the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400, will take the new test.

USCIS considers an application properly “filed” when Form N-400, is received by the appropriate USCIS location with signature, correct fee, and the form is completed according to instructions.

Note: If an applicant fails the English and/or civics test during the first examination, the applicant will be required to take the same version of the test, old or new, when the applicant is retested, even if the retest is scheduled on or after October 1, 2009.

The relevant study materials, etc. can be obtained from the USCIS website directly.

USCIS to introduce new Naturalization Test

In the interest of creating a more standardized, fair, and meaningful citizenship process, USCIS recently completed a redesign of the naturalization test administered to prospective Americans. The revised 100 questions and answers emphasize the fundamental concepts of American democracy, focusing on the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and the basic values we share as
Americans.

The goal of the new naturalization test is to inspire immigrants to learn about the civic values of this great Nation so that after they take the Oath of Allegiance, they will be fully prepared to participate in the democratic process. With assistance and input from a variety of stakeholders and immigrants themselves, the new test is designed to be an effective tool to encourage civic learning and patriotism. By studying for the test, applicants will learn about our shared history and common civic values, but most importantly—learn to identify with them as their own.

Earlier this year, more than 6,000 citizenship applicants volunteered to take a pilot version of the test at 10 USCIS sites across the country during a four-month period. Volunteers who participated in this pilot test achieved a 92.4 percent overall pass rate on the first try. Following the pilot, USCIS refined the questions and answers, dropping several and adjusting others to increase clarity and the range of acceptable answers to questions.

With the new test, naturalization applicants will have uniform, consistent testing experiences nationwide, and USCIS can ensure that every applicant has a meaningful understanding of U.S. government and history. In conjunction with accompanying U.S. history and civics study materials, the redesigned test will serve as an important instrument to encourage civic learning and patriotism among prospective citizens.

Following the public introduction of the redesigned naturalization test on September 27, 2007, there will be one full year before naturalization applicants begin taking the revised test. This period will allow adult educators and immigrants working toward citizenship sufficient time to prepare for the redesigned test.