How Can You Study for the U.S. Citizenship Test?

can-study-u-s-citizenship-test Credit: Mike Mozart/CC-BY 2.0

As of 2015, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website has a variety of study tools to help applicants prepare for their citizenship test. Study tools include flash cards, practice tests, vocabulary and more.

In addition to the USCIS study materials, there are many community organizations and social service providers that offer assistance to learn about and prepare for the U.S. citizenship tests. The USCIS funds programs such as the International Rescue Committee that offer classes held in churches, public libraries or various organizations. Many of these services are free, although some online practice tests and programs can be purchased online.

During a naturalization interview, applicants for U.S. citizenship are required to take English and civics tests, explains the USCIS. The English test evaluates an applicant's ability to speak, read and write in English. The civics test is comprised of 100 questions, of which an applicant is asked 10. The applicant must answer at least six of the 10 questions correctly to pass the test. If an applicant fails any portion of the test, he is allowed to retake that portion of the test within 60 to 90 days. An applicant must pass during his second test in order to gain U.S. citizenship.

The spoken English test is assessed by an interviewer, who will determine how well the candidate is able to communicate verbally. This can be studied for by practicing conversational English with a fluent speaker.

The written English test requires the candidate to correctly write one sentence out of three. This can be practiced by writing out commonly spoken phrases or practicing with a fluent speaker.

The final part of the English test section, the reading test, requires the candidate to read at least one sentence aloud correctly out of a total of three. This can easily be practiced alone or with a friend by reading out passages of a book, a travel guide or an English language phrase book. Having a native speaker on hand to check pronunciation can also be helpful.