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Embarking on your journey towards United States citizenship? The U.S. Citizenship Test is a crucial step in your naturalization process. The purpose of the test is to assess a citizenship applicant’s ability to read, write and speak in English as well as evaluate the applicant’s knowledge of U.S. history. To pass the test, the applicant must successfully complete an English exam that includes three parts: a speaking test, a reading test and a writing test, as well as a civics component. In this informative legal guide, we will review the main sections of the test and how to prepare for them.

Speaking Test

During the speaking test, the first part of the citizenship test’s English section, the immigration officer conducting your exam will ask you questions about your citizenship application and ask you to answer them in English. The main purpose of this section of the exam is to assess the fluency and comprehension of your English skills through a one-on-one conversation. It is important to note that you do not need to possess perfect English speaking skills in order to pass this test, you must simply show that you have a sufficient level of conversational abilities. To help prepare for the speaking test, practice English conversation with family and friends. This can help build confidence and improve your ability to demonstrate your English speaking skills in an interview setting.

Reading Test

The next part of the English exam is a reading test. At this stage, you will be given a digital tablet by your immigration officer. A sentence will appear on the tablet and you will be asked to read the sentence aloud to the officer. In order to pass the test, you must read one out of three sentences correctly. The reading passages are selected from a standardized set provided by USCIS and usually cover civics-related topics like U.S. history, government services, or holidays. However, the content is straightforward and not designed to test your knowledge of the subject matter itself. You can find a list of reading vocabulary on the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) website. It is highly advised to study these terms before your test.

Writing Test

The final component of the English exam is the writing test. For this section, the USCIS officer will provide you with up to three sentences to write down. The writing prompt will be basic sentences using common vocabulary and simple grammar, similar to the vocabulary used in the reading test. The sentences are read aloud one time by the officer. You'll be expected to accurately write out the dictated sentences, including correct spelling, capitalization, and basic punctuation like periods and commas. The sentences are read aloud one time by the officer and they are to be written on the digital tablet given to you at the previous stage.

Civics Test

Once you have completed the English section of the U.S. citizenship test, it is time to pass the civics test. This portion of the exam is oral and consists of 10 questions from the list of 100 civics test questions. You must correctly answer 6 out of the 10 questions in order to pass the exam. The questions are randomly selected and you will be able to stop the exam as soon as you answer 6 questions correctly. Generally, you will be allowed to phrase your answer in whatever way you’d like, as long as its content is correct.

Prepare for the civics test by reviewing the complete list of questions on the USCIS website. If you are aged 65 or older, you will only need to study 20 of the questions. Anyone else must study all of the 100 questions to properly prepare for the exam. About half of the questions are about the U.S. government, while the rest are about American history.

Next Steps

Upon completing the citizenship test, you will typically receive your results from the USCIS within the same day. If you passed, congratulations! You are one step closer to naturalization in the U.S. If you did not pass, do not lose hope. You will be able to retake the entire exam (or just the section you did not pass) in a re-examination about 2-3 months after your first exam. It is critical to keep in mind that the questions in your re-examination will be different from those on the first. 

Seeking Legal Support

As you prepare for the U.S. citizenship test, having professional legal support by your side is of utmost importance. At Attorney At Law, we are dedicated to helping you seamlessly navigate the complexities of the U.S. immigration system. With our legal expertise, you can pursue your citizenship dreams with confidence, knowing your case is being handled with top-tier diligence and care.

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