What Are the Six Steps of the Naturalization Process?

The steps of the U.S. naturalization process are determining eligibility, completing an application, providing fingerprints, participating in an interview with a U.S. government official and completing tests. After these are done, the applicant may take the oath of allegiance to the United States.

Naturalization is a legal process a foreign citizen completes to become a U.S. citizen. Eligibility requirements include being at least 18 years old, living as a lawful permanent resident in the U.S. for at least 5 years and being of good moral character. Completing the application involves filling out a form available from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. USCIS also arranges for fingerprinting.

During the naturalization interview, applicants take tests in English and civics. The English test has three parts testing an applicant's proficiency in speaking, reading and writing English. The civics test asks up to 10 questions about U.S. history and government. An applicant must answer at least six of the questions correctly to pass the test.

If the USCIS approves an application, the applicant receives an invitation to take the oath of allegiance at a naturalization ceremony. A court or the USCIS administers the ceremony and provides a certificate of naturalization, which is official proof of U.S. citizenship.