All entries for Tuesday 15 November 2005

November 15, 2005

Citizenship test

I was reading recently about the new citizenship tests immigrants are now required to take and, though I'm not sure I had considered beforehand what what might be included, I was surprised at the level of knowledge the test required the candidate to have.

One of the people who'd recently taken the test said:
'I wasn't quite sure with a true-or-false question which asked if the heir to the throne can marry anyone who isn't Protestant.'

Other example questions, from the BBC website, based on information in the official test booklet, included:
– There are four national saints' days in the UK, one for each nation. Which order do they fall in the calendar?
– Where does the myth of Father Christmas come from?
– Almost 60m people live in the UK. By what factor do the native-born English outnumber their Scots or Welsh neighbours?

Why are immigrants being forced to take a test that many British citizens (definitely including the 15-year old chavs I worked with, mentioned in the comments following my previous entry) would themselves fail?

On the other hand, will taking a test to prove their knowledge of British culture really make immigrants feel more integrated?

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