Tag Archives: NATZ

Reminder: New Citizenship Test as of Oct. 1

USCIS reminded the public that beginning Oct. 1, all citizenship applicants must take the new naturalization test, regardless of when they filed their Application for Naturalization (Form N-400).

To learn more about U.S. citizenship and the naturalization test, go to www.uscis.gov/citizenship.

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.

Legal Name Change on Your N-400? Be Prepared to Wait…

Applicants for Naturalization (acquiring U.S. citizenship by means other than birth) have the opportunity to request a legal name change as part of their N-400 application process.

While this may be of great convenience or importance to the Applicant, doing so will likely delay the adjudication of your N-400 by an extra 2 to 3 months.

The Applicant will likely complete most the formal application process (including fingerprinting, security checks, and in-person interview), but the application itself will not be given final approval, until the name change and related matters have been completed.  This results in a delay of the Oath Ceremony, possibly by several months.

Update on Naturalization Test Changes

USCIS hat implemented some changes to the format and content of the American Government/History examination which most applicants for U.S. citizenship must successfully complete. These Naturalization Test changes are effective October 1, 2008.

Do You Know Which Test Materials to Read for the Interview? The following guidelines will determine whether naturalization applicants will take the current test or the redesigned version:

  1. If an applicant applies BEFORE October 1, 2008 and is scheduled for his or her naturalization interview BEFORE October 1, 2008, he or she will take the current test.
  2. If an applicant applies BEFORE October 1, 2008 and is scheduled for his or her naturalization interview AFTER October 1, 2008, he or she can choose to take the current test or the redesigned version.
  3. If an applicant applies AFTER October 1, 2008, he or she will take the redesigned version.
  4. If the nationalization interview is scheduled AFTER October 1, 2009, regardless of when he or she applied, he or she will take the redesigned version.

For the writing test, a USCIS Officer will dictate to the applicant using sentence(s) from one of the standardized test forms. The sentences are constructed from words included on the English writing vocabulary list. Applicants are required to write 1 sentence out of 3 correctly (same as the current test). During the writing test, the applicant is provided a form with blank lines to write the dictated sentence(s). The USCIS Officer instructs an applicant to write down exactly what he/she says.

For the reading test, a USCIS Officer will use sentence(s) that appear on one of the standardized test forms and will ask the applicant to read the sentence(s), which are constructed from words included on the English reading vocabulary list. The applicant must read 1 sentence out of 3 correctly (same as the current test).

It’s good time to become a U.S. Citizen.

Currently, the USCIS is taking approximately 6-8 months to complete an average application for U.S. citizenship. Depending on how you obtained your Green Card, you may have to wait 3 or 5 years to be eligible to file your N-400. However, in many instances, you can file about 90 days before your “wait time” is up. Many countries also allow for dual citizenship, for those who do not wish to relinquish their old nationality in favor of U.S. citizenship. Schedule an appointment to discuss your individual situation.