A citizenship test is a requirement for individuals seeking U.S. citizenship via naturalization. The purpose of the test is to determine if the foreign national has adequate knowledge of the United State’s history, laws, government, and more. In this post, we’ll go over 100 common citizenship test questions and answers to be acquainted with. During the exam, the immigration officer will ask you up to 10 questions from the list of 100 and you must answer at least 6 of them correctly in order to pass the civics portion of the naturalization test.
Find out the Difference Between Citizenship and Nationality.
Citizenship Test Structure
The citizenship test is made up of two parts – the English Test and the Civics Test.
The English test will assess your ability to:
- Read: You will need to read one out of three sentences aloud accurately to demonstrate your proficiency. Some words you may be asked to read include the names of past or current presidents, places, verbs, etc. See this list of the reading vocabulary for the naturalization test;
- Write: You will need to write one out of three sentences accurately to demonstrate your English writing proficiency. Many of these words will be similar, if not the ones on the vocabulary word list linked above. If you happen to misspell some of the words it is not an automatic failure, so don’t worry about that. You also have some leeway for grammar or punctuation errors. Be sure to write your answers legibly.
- Speak: You will need to answer questions the immigration officer asks you.
If at any point during one of the sections above you need clarification on something, do not hesitate to ask the immigration officer. They can repeat questions or words if necessary for you.
Learn more about U.S. Citizenship Interview.
The civics test is where you will need to answer at least 6 out of 10 questions correctly to pass. Below are 100 of the possible civics questions you may receive. For individuals who are 65 years old or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions that have been marked with an asterisk.
IMPORTANT: DHS published a notice in the Federal Register announcing plans to conduct a trial of proposed changes to the current nationalization test with volunteers from community-based organizations (CBOs). USCIS will hold a virtual engagement on March 3, 2023, to provide an overview of the proposed changes and the trial test.
1. What is the supreme law of the land?
Correct Answer: The Constitution
Additional details: The U.S. Constitution was written in 1787. It establishes the framework for the federal government and outlines the powers and limitations of its branches: the legislative, executive, and judicial. The Constitution also includes a Bill of Rights, which consists of the first ten amendments. These amendments protect fundamental rights and freedoms, such as the freedom of speech and religion, the right to bear arms, and the right to a fair trial.
2. What does the Constitution do?
▪ sets up the government
▪ defines the government
▪ protects basic rights of Americans
3. The idea of self-government is in the first three words of the Constitution. What are these words?
Correct Answer: We the People
Additional details: These words reiterate the fact that the U.S. government is structured in such a way that the government is ruled by the people.
4. What is an amendment?
- a change (to the Constitution) or;
- an addition (to the Constitution)
Additional details: The U.S. Constitution can be changed or added to. In fact, did you know it has been amended 27 times?
5. What do we call the first ten amendments to the Constitution?
Correct Answer: the Bill of Rights
Additional details: The Bill of Rights outlines certain fundamental rights and protections for American citizens, such as freedom of speech, religion, and the press, the right to bear arms, the right to a fair trial, and protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.
6. What is one right or freedom from the First Amendment?*
▪ petition the government
Additional details: The First Amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
7. How many amendments does the Constitution have?
Correct Answer: 27
8. What did the Declaration of Independence do?
▪ announced our independence (from Great Britain)
▪ declared our independence (from Great Britain)
▪ said that the United States is free (from Great Britain)
9. What are two rights in the Declaration of Independence?
▪ pursuit of happiness
Additional details: The Declaration of Independence states that all people have certain “unalienable rights,” such as life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness and that governments are established to protect these rights.
10. What is freedom of religion?
Correct Answer: You can practice any religion, or not practice a religion.
Additional details: The First Amendment gives you the right to choose or not choose a religion and the right to change that at your discretion.
11. What is the economic system in the United States?*
▪ capitalist economy
▪ market economy
Additional details: Also known as a free market, a capitalist economy, is one where private individuals and businesses own and control the means of production, distribution, and exchange of goods and services. In this type of economy, the production of goods and services is driven by profit, and prices are determined by supply and demand.
12. What is the “rule of law”?
▪ Everyone must follow the law
▪ Leaders must obey the law
▪ Government must obey the law
▪ No one is above the law
13. Name one branch or part of the government
▪ the courts
Additional details: The three branches of government are the Legislative (composed of the Congress, which consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives), the Executive (led by the President and includes the Vice President and the Cabinet), and the Judicial (composed of the Supreme Court and other federal courts).
14. What stops one branch of government from becoming too powerful?
▪ checks and balances
▪ separation of powers
15. Who is in charge of the executive branch?
▪ the President
Additional details: The executive branch is led by the U.S. President and includes the Vice President and the Cabinet.
16. Who makes federal laws?
▪ Senate and House (of Representatives)
▪ (U.S. or national) legislature
Additional details: The legislative branch (composed of the Congress, which consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives) is the only branch of government that can make new laws or amend existing ones.
17. What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress?*
▪ the Senate and House (of Representatives)
18. How many U.S. Senators are there?
▪ one hundred (100)
19. We elect a U.S. Senator for how many years?
▪ 6 years
20. Who is one of your state’s U.S. Senators now?*
Correct Answer: Will vary based on which state they reside in.
21. The House of Representatives has how many voting members?
Additional details: Each of the members represents a congressional district in one of the 50 states, as well as several non-voting members representing territories and the District of Columbia.
22. We elect a U.S. Representative for how many years?
▪ 2 years
23. Name your U.S. Representative.
▪ The correct answers will vary based on where they live. [Residents of territories with nonvoting Delegates or Resident Commissioners may provide the name of that Delegate or Commissioner. Also acceptable is any statement that the territory has no (voting) Representatives in Congress.]
24. Who does a U.S. Senator represent?
▪ all people of the state
25. Why do some states have more Representatives than other states?
▪ (because of) the state’s population
▪ (because) they have more people
▪ (because) some states have more people
26. We elect a President for how many years?
▪ 4 years
Additional details: An election happens every four years and a president is allowed to serve for a total of 2 terms.
27. In what month do we vote for President?*
Additional details: The election takes place on the first Tuesday in November.
28. What is the name of the President of the United States now?*
As of March 2023, the sitting president is Joe Biden.
29. What is the name of the Vice President of the United States now?
As of March 2023, the current Vice President is Kamala Harris.
30. If the President can no longer serve, who becomes President?
▪ the Vice President
Additional details: If the President dies or resigns, the U.S. VP takes over office.
31. If both the President and the Vice President can no longer serve, who becomes President?
▪ the Speaker of the House
32. Who is the Commander in Chief of the military?
▪ the President
Additional details: Not only is the President considered the Chief Executive, but he/she is considered the Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy.
33. Who signs bills to become laws?
▪ the President
Additional details: The bill must be first passed by Congress, then the President is responsible for signing it into law.
34. Who vetoes bills?
▪ the President
Additional details: The President holds the authority to veto a bill (prevent it from going into effect).
35. What does the President’s Cabinet do?
▪ advises the President
Additional details: The Cabinet consists of the Vice President and the heads of 15 executive departments. The heads of the departments are known as Cabinet Secretaries.
36. What are two Cabinet-level positions?
▪ Secretary of Agriculture
▪ Secretary of Commerce
▪ Secretary of Defense
▪ Secretary of Education
▪ Secretary of Energy
▪ Secretary of Health and Human Services
▪ Secretary of Homeland Security
▪ Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
▪ Secretary of the Interior
▪ Secretary of Labor
▪ Secretary of State
▪ Secretary of Transportation
▪ Secretary of the Treasury
▪ Secretary of Veterans Affairs
▪ Attorney General
▪ Vice President
37. What does the judicial branch do?
▪ reviews laws
▪ explains laws
▪ resolves disputes (disagreements)
▪ decides if a law goes against the Constitution
Additional details: The Judicial Branch is responsible for interpreting laws and administering justice in the United States.
38. What is the highest court in the United States?
▪ the Supreme Court
39. How many justices are on the Supreme Court?
Answers may vary depending on when the question is being asked. As of March 2023, there are nine justices.
40. Who is the Chief Justice of the United States now?
Correct Answer: Answers may vary depending on when the question is being asked. As of March 2023, the Chief Justice of the United States is John G. Roberts.
41. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the federal government. What is one power of the federal government?
▪ to print money
▪ to declare war
▪ to create an army
▪ to make treaties
42. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the states. What is one power of the states?
▪ provide schooling and education
▪ provide protection (police)
▪ provide safety (fire departments)
▪ give a driver’s license
▪ approve zoning and land use
43. Who is the Governor of your state now?
Answers may vary depending on where you live.
44. What is the capital of your state?*
Answers may vary depending on where you live.
45. What are the two major political parties in the United States?*
▪ Democratic and Republican
46. What is the political party of the President now?
Answers may vary depending on when the question is asked but as of March 2023, Biden’s political party is Democrat.
47. What is the name of the Speaker of the House of Representatives now?
Answers may vary depending on when the question is asked but as of March 2023, the Speaker of the House of Representatives is Kevin McCarthy.
48. There are four amendments to the Constitution about who can vote. Describe one of them.
▪ Citizens eighteen (18) and older (can vote).
▪ You don’t have to pay (a poll tax) to vote.
▪ Any citizen can vote. (Women and men can vote.)
▪ A male citizen of any race (can vote).
49. What is one responsibility that is only for United States citizens?*
▪ serve on a jury
▪ vote in a federal election
50. Name one right only for United States citizens.
▪ vote in a federal election
▪ run for federal office
51. What are two rights of everyone living in the United States?
▪ freedom of expression
▪ freedom of speech
▪ freedom of assembly
▪ freedom to petition the government
▪ freedom of religion
▪ the right to bear arms
52. What do we show loyalty to when we say the Pledge of Allegiance?
▪ the United States
▪ the flag
Additional details: The Pledge of Allegiance is a symbol of American identity and values and is a reminder of the responsibilities and duties that come with being a citizen of the United States.
53. What is one promise you make when you become a United States citizen?
▪ give up loyalty to other countries
▪ defend the Constitution and laws of the United States
▪ obey the laws of the United States
▪ serve in the U.S. military (if needed)
▪ serve (do important work for) the nation (if needed)
▪ be loyal to the United States
54. How old do citizens have to be to vote for President?*
▪ 18 and older
55. What are two ways that Americans can participate in their democracy?
▪ join a political party
▪ help with a campaign
▪ join a civic group
▪ join a community group
▪ give an elected official your opinion on an issue
▪ call Senators and Representatives
▪ publicly support or oppose an issue or policy
▪ run for office ▪ write to a newspaper
56. When is the last day you can send in federal income tax forms?*
▪ April 15
57. When must all men register for the Selective Service?
▪ at age eighteen (18)
▪ between eighteen (18) and twenty-six (26)
58. What is one reason colonists came to America?
▪ political liberty
▪ religious freedom
▪ economic opportunity
▪ practice their religion
▪ escape persecution
Additional details: There were many reasons colonists migrated to America ranging from political freedom and escaping persecution to the vast opportunities financially.
59. Who lived in America before the Europeans arrived?
▪ American Indians
▪ Native Americans
Additional details: Prior to the Europeans setting in America, Native American tribes were found throughout the continent.
60. What group of people was taken to America and sold as slaves?
▪ people from Africa
61. Why did the colonists fight the British?
▪ because of high taxes (taxation without representation)
▪ because the British army stayed in their houses (boarding, quartering)
▪ because they didn’t have self-government
Additional details: The American Revolutionary War (1775-1783) resulted in the independence of the United States from British rule.
62. Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?
▪ (Thomas) Jefferson
Additional details: The Declaration of Independence, which announced the separation of the thirteen British North American colonies from Great Britain, was drafted by Thomas Jefferson and adopted by Congress on July 4, 1776.
63. When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?
▪ July 4, 1776
64. There were 13 original states. Name three.
▪ New Hampshire
▪ Rhode Island
▪ New York
▪ New Jersey
▪ North Carolina
▪ South Carolina
65. What happened at the Constitutional Convention?
▪ The Constitution was written.
▪ The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution
Additional details: The purpose of the Constitutional Convention was to redesign the system of government. The convention was from May 14-September 17, 1787.
66. When was the Constitution written?
Additional details: It was written during the Constitutional Convention.
67. The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution. Name one of the writers.
▪ (James) Madison
▪ (Alexander) Hamilton
▪ (John) Jay
Additional details: The Federalist Papers are a collection of 85 essays to support the ratification of the United States Constitution.
68. What is one thing Benjamin Franklin is famous for?
▪ U.S. diplomat
▪ oldest member of the Constitutional Convention
▪ first Postmaster General of the United States
▪ writer of “Poor Richard’s Almanac”
▪ started the first free libraries
69. Who is the “Father of Our Country”?
▪ (George) Washington
Additional details: Not only was he the first president but he also commanded the army during the American Revolution and was also a leader during the Constitutional Convention.
70. Who was the first President?*
▪ (George) Washington
Additional details: Washington held office from 1789-1797.
71. What territory did the United States buy from France in 1803?
▪ the Louisiana Territory
Additional details: The U.S. paid $15 million to France for the territory.
72. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1800s.
▪ War of 1812
▪ Mexican-American War
▪ Civil War
▪ Spanish-American War
73. Name the U.S. war between the North and the South.
▪ the Civil War
▪ the War between the States
Additional details: The Civil War lasted from 1861-1865 and was between the Confederate States of America and the Union Army.
74. Name one problem that led to the Civil War.
▪ economic reasons
▪ states’ rights
75. What was one important thing that Abraham Lincoln did?*
▪ freed the slaves (Emancipation Proclamation)
▪ saved (or preserved) the Union
▪ led the United States during the Civil War
76. What did the Emancipation Proclamation do?
▪ freed the slaves
▪ freed slaves in the Confederacy
▪ freed slaves in the Confederate states
▪freed slaves in most Southern states
Additional details: The Emancipation Proclamation was issued by President Lincoln and went into effect in 1863.
77. What did Susan B. Anthony do?
▪ fought for women’s rights
▪ fought for civil rights
Additional details: Susan B. Anthony played a pivotal role in the women’s suffrage movement in the United States.
78. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1900s.*
▪ World War I
▪ World War II
▪ Korean War
▪ Vietnam War
▪ (Persian) Gulf War
79. Who was President during World War I?
▪ (Woodrow) Wilson
Additional details: Wilson was president from 1913-1921.
80. Who was President during the Great Depression and World War II?
▪ (Franklin) Roosevelt
Additional details: Roosevelt was president from 1933-1945.
81. Who did the United States fight in World War II?
▪ Japan, Germany, and Italy
82. Before he was President, Eisenhower was a general. What war was he in?
▪ World War II
Additional details: Eisenhower was the 34th president.
83. During the Cold War, what was the main concern of the United States?
Additional details: This war was between the Soviet Union and the U.S.
84. What movement tried to end racial discrimination?
▪ civil rights (movement)
85. What did Martin Luther King, Jr. do?*
▪ fought for civil rights
▪ worked for equality for all Americans
Additional details: Martin Luther King, Jr. was known for his leadership in the American civil rights movement and an advocate for racial equality with the goal of ending segregation and discrimination.
86. What major event happened on September 11, 2001, in the United States?
▪ Terrorists attacked the United States.
Additional details: The 9/11 attack was carried out by a Muslim extremist group in New York City.
87. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States.
88. Name one of the two longest rivers in the United States.
▪ Missouri (River)
▪ Mississippi (River)
89. What ocean is on the West Coast of the United States?
▪ Pacific (Ocean)
90. What ocean is on the East Coast of the United States?
▪ Atlantic (Ocean)
91. Name one U.S. territory.
▪ Puerto Rico
▪ U.S. Virgin Islands
▪ American Samoa
▪ Northern Mariana Islands
92. Name one state that borders Canada.
▪ New Hampshire
▪ New York
▪ North Dakota
93. Name one state that borders Mexico.
▪ New Mexico
94. What is the capital of the United States?*
▪ Washington, D.C.
95. Where is the Statue of Liberty?*
▪ New York (Harbor)
▪ Liberty Island
[Also acceptable are New Jersey, near New York City, and on the Hudson (River).]
Additional details: The Statue was a gift to the U.S. from France. It symbolizes justice and freedom.
96. Why does the flag have 13 stripes?
▪ because there were 13 original colonies
▪ because the stripes represent the original colonies
97. Why does the flag have 50 stars?*
▪ because there is one star for each state
▪ because each star represents a state
▪ because there are 50 states
98. What is the name of the national anthem?
▪ The Star-Spangled Banner
99. When do we celebrate Independence Day?*
▪ July 4
Additional details: This is the day the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, separating itself from British rule.
100. Name two national U.S. holidays.
▪New Year’s Day
▪ Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
▪ Presidents’ Day
▪ Memorial Day
▪ Independence Day
▪ Labor Day
▪ Columbus Day
▪ Veterans Day
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