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How difficult is the naturalization test?

If you are an immigrant who lives in Kentucky and wishes to apply for United States citizenship, you will need to go through the naturalization process, one requirement of which is to pass the naturalization test. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services explain that before taking the test, however, you must have an initial interview with a USCIS officer.

Your interviewer will question you about your interview application and your background in general. Do not take this to mean that (s)he thinks there is something the matter with you or your application that might preclude you from becoming an American citizen. All (s)he wants to do is talk with you in English to see if you understand our language sufficiently to answer the questions appropriately.

At some point after your initial interview, you will need to pass two tests, one devoted to English and the other devoted to what we call civics, that is, the rights and duties of U.S. citizenship. If you wish, you can attend naturalization classes to prepare for these tests.

English test

Your English test will include the following three parts:

  1. A speaking test
  2. A reading test
  3. A writing test

You actually take the speaking part of your test during your initial interview. On the reading test, you will be given three English sentences to read out loud; you must read at least one of them correctly. On the writing test, you will listen to another three English sentences, at least one of which you must correctly write.

Civics test

Your civics test will contain 10 multiple-choice questions covering such things as American history, government, geography, holidays, etc. To pass this test, you must answer at least six of the questions correctly.

Retaking the test(s)

Do not despair if you fail part of the test the first time you take it. You can retake whichever part(s) of it you failed any time up to 90 days after your first try. This gives you extra time to improve your English speaking, reading and writing skills.

This is general information only and not intended to provide legal advice.

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