The Australian Immigration re-constructed their immigration exams to fully assess applicant’s understanding of Australian civics and the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship.
Senator Chris Evans, minister for Immigration and Citizenship said that the new test is based on the pledge of commitment that new Australians make when becoming citizens.
Other topics will be included on the exam such as Australia’s democratic beliefs, laws and government as well as responsibilities and privileges of citizenship.
However, Evans cleared that the test is not a general questions about Australia.
“We want people applying for citizenship to understand the values of Australian society, our democratic beliefs, our rights and our system of law and what it means to be an Australian citizen. All prospective citizens should understand those concepts so all of the questions in the new citizenship test focus on the commitments that new citizens make in the pledge,” Evans said.
The new tests is said to be tougher compared to previous citizenship exams. Australian government would want foreign nationals who want to be a citizen to have a full knowledge about Australia.
People will now need to answer 75% or 15 of the 20 questions correctly to pass – up from 60% under the old test.
The mandatory questions have been removed to make the test fairer. All questions are now equally important and a person can no longer answer 19 out of 20 questions correctly and still fail the test because they answered one of the three mandatory questions incorrectly.
The Australian government is now developing a special citizenship courses to help small group of disadvantage people, who has a limited literacy and schooling, who want to be a citizen in Australia.
“This will ensure that we encourage people to become citizens without the test being a barrier,” Evans said.
The new test was developed after an independent review of the old citizenship test last year found that it could be improved by focusing on the pledge of commitment.