U.S. Law Center

Immigration: What can you expect during the citizenship test?

Recently, this blog featured a post discussing what happens at an immigration interview. While the interview is an important element of becoming a U.S. citizen, it is only part of the naturalization process. In addition to completing the interview successfully, those wishing to become permanent residents of California or other states must also pass a citizenship test.

Because the immigration process typically takes some time to complete, prospective new citizens have ample opportunity to study for the test. It is also wise to find out what to expect before it is time to take the test. If you are already working with an immigration attorney, he or she has likely taken steps to prepare you for naturalization. If you do not have a lawyer at this time, the following sections will give you an idea of what the two-part citizenship test entails.

Part one: language

In order to show that you can function well during social and economic facets of living in America, you must pass the language test. It will test your ability to read text aloud, to speak with the interviewer and to write basic sentences.

Part two: civics

Unless you have acquired a waiver for this part of the naturalization test, you must demonstrate that you have a basic understanding of the American government and the history of the United States. To determine this, you complete quizzes on topics such as the U.S. Constitution, the government and the presidency, to name just a few.

It is wise to take advantage of any available resources that may help you pass the citizenship test. You can find study materials on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS) website or you can ask your immigration attorney for assistance.

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