The path to acquiring US citizenship is strewn with difficulties, not the least of which is the citizenship test conducted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services or the USCIS. The package consists of two parts – a test in English as well in Civics. Qualifying in both is mandatory to cross the last and final hurdle towards acquiring US citizenship.
Once you have applied formally for United States citizenship, your application would be scrutinized by the immigration officials. If the application clears all the requirements, you would be naturally called for the interview with the USCIS official.
In the normal process, an applicant can expect to receive the call for the interview within 6 months of filing the application. But current scenario is such that the time frame may stretch a bit to the north with the interview being scheduled as late as 16 to 18 months after the filing process. This situation has arisen due to the unprecedented rise in the number of applications.
The intimation for the citizenship interview is done via mail. Mind you, the call letter would come only once. In the absence of a response, you would not receive a second call from the USCIS. The letter would contain detailed information about the time and place scheduled for the interview.
The applicant is expected to present his Alien Registration Card or Permanent Resident Card at the time of the interview. You should also present your Passport for scrutiny. In case you have any Re-entry pass, ensure that you have it with you during the interview. And be prepared to answer any questions related to your application and your background.
Once your documents have been verified, the official would test your English and Civics skill through oral questions in the Civics test and by asking to read one out of three statements and explaining the meaning in the English test.
In case you fail to qualify for the tests, you would be given another opportunity the same day itself. If you still fail to get through, you are given the option for a retest in the part you have failed between 60 to 90 days from the date that had been scheduled for your first interview.