Tips for Studying for the Citizenship Civics Test

One of the tests that you will have to take during your naturalization interview before you can get your United States citizenship is the Civics test. In many ways, this is the most difficult test you will have to take during your immigration process. With the written, spoken, and reading English tests, you are likely to be using knowledge that you would have gotten naturally by living in the United States as a permanent resident. The civics test, meanwhile, is not necessarily intuitive, and unless you read the news regularly you may not know the answers off the top of your head. That likely means you will have to do some studying to do well on it.

The Test

The Civics test covers 100 questions in the categories of American Government, American History, and Integrated Civics. Applicants will be asked up to ten questions from the list of 100 questions in English. You must answer correctly six of the ten questions to pass the Civics test.

A full list of the naturalization civics test questions and answers can be found here.

If you feel that you need additional materials aside from the questions and answers supplied above, you can find flashcards, audio of the questions and answers, and other materials on the USCIS page here.

Exceptions

If you are:

  • Age 50 or older at the time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident (green card holder) in the United States for 20 years (commonly referred to as the “50/20” exception).
    or
  •  Age 55 or older at the time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident in the United States for 15 years (commonly referred to as the “55/15” exception).

Then you are allowed to take the civics test in your native language. If you would like to take advantage of this option, you have to bring an interpreter with you to your interview who is fluent in both English and your native language.

If you are age 65 or older and have been a permanent resident for at least 20 years at the time of filing for naturalization, you are also allowed to use an interpreter, but you are also allowed to take a greatly simplified version of the Civics test.

An officer only asks questions from the three “65/20” test forms when administering the civics test to such applicants. The test forms only contain 20 specially designated civics questions from the usual list of 100 questions. You can find the list of 20 questions here.

NOTE: The age and time requirements must be met at the time of filing the naturalization application, so plan accordingly when deciding on the timing of your application.

Need help with filing your application for naturalization or strategizing about your naturalization interview? I am here to help. Contact me today to schedule an appointment.

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