In an application for U.S. citizenship, the applicant will need to show that they possess the knowledge, character, and skillsets to make a living in the United States and integrate themselves into the American community.

To determine this, immigration conducts three tests for citizenship, namely reading, writing, and civics and history.

English Ability Tests: Reading and Writing

The English ability section is comprised of two parts: reading and writing. In the reading test, an immigration officer will present a sentence to the applicant, usually through an iPad screen, and ask them to read it.

Immediately after comes the writing test where the immigration officer will require the applicant to write a sentence on a blank sheet of paper. Things like spelling, capitalization, and punctuation will be looked at here.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the two English ability tests will also include things that happen throughout the interview. The immigration officer will listen attentively to how the applicant responds to questions and will look closely at their level of understanding of the English language.

The immigration officer may also test the applicant’s understanding of basic English instructions, such as raising their right hand, taking a seat, etc. If the applicant is unable to show English ability during the whole interview session, the chances of them not passing the English ability tests are high.

Civics and History Test

The final citizenship test covers U.S. civics and history. This is the harder portion of it, but there are plenty of reviewers and study materials available for applicants to access. The study materials should indicate that it is for the N-400 and cover 100 questions. Most items are the same year to year, save for questions such as:

  • Who is the U.S. president?
  • Who is the governor of your state?
  • Who is your representative?

Although there are a hundred questions to study, immigration officers only ask six questions of their choice. If the applicant gets all six questions right, they pass the test. However, if they miss a question, the immigration officer can give up to 10 questions to make up for it. At the very least, the applicant should get a score of 60 to pass the civics and history portion of the interview.