U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced plans to implement a revised version of the civics portion of the naturalization test, following a pilot of the test with community-based organizations and volunteers conducted over the summer. Applicants who apply for naturalization before December 1, 2020, will take the current version; those who apply on or after that date will take the revised version. The English portion of the naturalization test has not changed.
USCIS said it revised the civics test as part of a decennial update “to ensure that it remains an instrument that comprehensively assesses applicants’ knowledge of American history, government and civic values.” The agency said the revised test includes “more questions that test the applicant’s understanding of U.S. history and civics” and includes a variety of topics “that provide the applicant with more opportunities to learn about the United States as part of the test preparation process.”
The revised test will not change the passing score, which will remain at 60 percent. To pass, most candidates must correctly answer 12 questions out of 20. USCIS said it will maintain current guidelines for statutorily established special considerations for applicants who are 65 years old or older and have at least 20 years of lawful permanent resident status. To pass, such applicants will be asked 10 questions and must answer at least six questions correctly.