BBC home affairs correspondent Daniel Sandford asks whether Lib Dem plans for an amnesty for illegal immigrants would solve the problem of illegal immigration.
Immigration requires that naturalization applicants must demonstrate an ability to read, write, and speak words in ordinary usage in the English language, and have a knowledge and understanding of U.S. history and government. As part of a multi-year redesign, the naturalization test was modified to achieve two basic objectives:
A uniform and consistent testing experience for all applicants
A civics test that can effectively assess an applicant’s knowledge of U.S. history and government
The new test strives to emphasize the founding principles of American democracy and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship while also serving as an important instrument to encourage civic learning and attachment to the country.
From October 1, 2008 through January 31, 2010, more than 577,000 new naturalization tests were administered nationwide. For those applicants taking both the English and civics tests, the overall national pass rate as of January 2010 is 92 percent. Data collected since October 1, 2008 indicate that applicant performance remains relatively consistent with that of the previous test. Compared to historical data from internal case management systems, the current pass rate of 92 percent is similar to that of the old test, which was 91 percent based on 2008 data.
Background on the Data
The data reflected above were taken from internal case management systems used to track naturalization applications and have been gathered to provide a general snapshot of how applicants are performing on the revised test. The national pass rate is determined based solely on an applicant’s first test within the current naturalization application. The data represent applicants taking the new naturalization test from October 1, 2008 through January 31, 2010. Please note that test results for each applicant are manually entered into the case management system and some errors may occur during manual entry. Although every effort has been undertaken to eliminate any errors made during manual data entry, errors may exist that would impact the publicized national pass rate. For More Information, Please Contact:
Fresno Immigration Attorney Phillip Kim
During your naturalization eligibility interview, will be tested your ability to read, write, and speak English (unless you are exempt from the English requirements).
You will also be given a civics test in English (to test your knowledge and understanding of U.S. history and government) unless you are exempt. Even if exempt from the English test, you will need to take the civics test unless you qualify for a waiver. You may also be eligible to take the civics test in your native language with the assistance of an interpreter if you qualify.
Your English skills will be tested in the following ways:
Reading. To test your ability to read in English, you must read one
sentence, out of three sentences Writing.
To test your ability to write in English, you must write one
sentence, out of three sentences Speaking.
Your ability to speak English is determined by your answers to
questions normally asked by officers during the naturalization eligibility interview regarding the information Application for Naturalization. For More Information, Please Contact:
Fresno Immigration Attorney Phillip Kim
On October 1, 2008, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin
administering a new naturalization test. The following guidelines will determine
whether you will take the old test or the new test. If you:
• Filed∗ the Application for Naturalization, BEFORE October 1, 2008,
and are scheduled for your naturalization interview BEFORE October 1, 2008, you will
take the old test.
• Filed* the Application for Naturalization, BEFORE October 1, 2008,
and are scheduled for your naturalization interview ON or AFTER October 1, 2008 up
until October 1, 2009, you can choose to take the old test or the new test.
• Filed* the Application for Naturalization, ON or AFTER October 1,
2008, you will take the new test.
• Are scheduled for your naturalization interview ON or AFTER October 1, 2009,
regardless of when you filed* the Application for Naturalization, you will
take the new test.
Changes to the New Naturalization Test
Changes to the new naturalization test include a revised list of 100 civics (history
and government) questions and answers; a new list of civics-based English reading
and writing vocabulary items; and standardized testing procedures for USCIS
The 100 new civics (history and government) questions and answers are available to
the public. The content now follows a basic U.S. history and government curriculum.
For the civics test, an applicant will be asked up to 10 questions from the list of 100
civics questions and answers. Applicants must answer correctly at least six of the 10
questions to pass the civics test.
There are three components of the English test: speaking, reading, and writing. No
changes were made to the speaking portion of the English test. An applicant’s ability
to speak English is determined by the USCIS Officer from the applicant’s answers to