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Important points to know about the citizenship test

On Behalf of | Jan 6, 2021 | Naturalization/Citizenship

To become a citizen of the United States, a person must pass the citizenship test, which is a two-part exam that covers knowledge of civic and English.

According to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, the English portion will test English language skills in speaking, reading and writing. It occurs during an interview. The applicant will have to write sentences and read sentences out loud. His or her English does not have to be perfect, but a person should have a decent grasp of the language.

Civics test

The civics test is a little trickier because of recent changes. The USCIS explains that the civics test is available in the 2008 version or 2020 version. A person’s filing date determines which test he or she must take. Anyone filing after December 1, 2020, must take the 2020 version.

The 2008 version of the test requires a USCIS officer to ask the applicant questions. There can be up to 10 questions with six correct answers required to pass. There are 100 possible questions for this test.

The 2020 version is similar, but there is a total of 20 questions the officer will ask out of 126 possible questions. A person must correctly answer 12 questions to pass.


A lawful permanent resident of the U.S. for at least 20 years who is 65 years old or older will only have 20 questions he or she must study. In addition, he or she may take the test in any language.


You can take the test two times. Once you pass a portion, you do not have to retake it. However, you must retest on the portion you fail between 60 to 90 days after your first attempt.