Life in the UK - I fail the Citizenship Test

| | Comments (180)

The new test for those wishing to become British citizens has been introduced. You buy a £9.99 book and take a £34 computer-based test, which seems a little steep for something with just 24 questions. However,you can take it as many times as necessary, so centres will be falling over themselves to accept your cash. The BBC has some unofficial questions based on their reading of the book. I managed a sterling 50% (you need 75% to pass). One of the ones I got right was a guess. I wasn't sure what I should do to be British- basically, whether I should obey the laws, participate in a culture or be a part of a European democracy. I guessed the first, assuming that's what the politicians behind this would want me to say and, sadly, was right.

Somehow, I have managed to be a British citizen for decades without knowing how long you have to be married before you can get divorced (one year- I said six months), or that 18-year-olds got the vote in 1969, and I only learned that you can dial 112 instead of 999 for the emergency services a few months ago.

While the idea of bringing newcomers into British society is one I think is sound, the dreary, drab, death-by-committee feel to all of this is off-putting to me. The government website talks about attending ESOL and citizenship classes, the mere thought of which makes me so glad to be several thousand miles away from those classrooms. The materials and curriculum they were destroying the subject with were depressing enough, but the thought of having to graft on their view of citizenship is enough to give me sleepless nights, let alone the wading through manuals and PDFs full of soulless jargon and slightly dated business terminology, or, God forbid, the training sessions. They'd probably be better off doling out copies of RJ Unstead's children's history books, which are well-written, captivating and far more likely to make people engage with the culture and history of the UK.

Categories: General


I totally agree with you, I have recently took the citizenship test and failed the main reason being because I booked the test before I bought the book then couldn't get hold of a book because 'Waterstone' the main shop that sold it didnt had any in stock for days and other shops either haven't heard of it or didn't have it and I just cant understand why the government need us to know the answers to questions such as what percentage of the uk is under 19 years of age, who is a shadow cabinet, and who can pass laws that british courts must enforce? Really what is the point in us knowing the answers to these questions just because we want to become british citizens. The magority of british citizens dont know the answers to these questions much more because I ask my co-workers, and even stop professional people in the street and ask them these same questions which they didnt no the answers to. I think the test is stupid and even if you do manage to get a copy of the book it is still very likely that you will fail. Its a big book and its alot to remember especially if you work and have a family.

Congratulation, Afterall you got the British
citizenship. But i surprissed to know that
'Waterstone' is the only shop through which one can get that book.

Ashish, I was born and bred in the UK- I have been a British citizen since birth, and I didn't know the answers to many of the questions.

I bought the book from It would have been good if this book was around 10 years ago when I first came to the UK because it has a lot of information that one needs to know if they want to live here and be part of the society. I did need to learn all that but there was no single book with all the info compiled.
I think one should read it but object to being examined on demographic material and be expected to know percentages. Also, I am not religious, do not go to pubs, do not like football and could not care less about these subjects even in my own country. So it is really offensive to expect that I should care about them here.

The idea of the Britishness test isn't bad. But the performance could be better.

(I haven't sat the test yet but will in January.)

This become general trend in UK to impose test on everything just to make money. Buy books, book tests, pay for the traveling get fail and keep on testing yourself again and again.
Local council should arrange seminars and guide people in this regards and evaluation for knowledge should be tested on the number of attended lectures. It seems that it is a great sin if you apply or to become a British citizen.
More than 50% pure British dont know about the stuff which is expected to be known by an individual, and they even dont bother to get that knowlede as well.
There should be some exceptable criteria for becoming a Britiish Citizen.

This test wont bother me cause i have to read too many harder books for uni, but i cant imagin what my friends will do who can hardly spell BRITISH word, i know one friend has bought a book to prepare for an exam next year, i think he will be "scanning the picture of the answers" for one year. this is a tragedy.

This test wont bother me cause i have to read too many harder books for uni, but i cant imagin what my friends will do who can hardly spell BRITISH word, i know one friend has bought a book to prepare for an exam next year, i think he will be "scanning the picture of the answers" for one year. this is a tragedy.

well........being a doctor in philosophy and giving this stupid test is killing my self respect cum degree i acquired. but i have to. i have my test pray i get through. i have done hard work...........reading that BOOK at train stations and at lunch hours at work.........booooooo. will let u know tom........if i wud be alive or dead inside.

Have recently booked a test for my wife & shortly thereafter purchased the prescribed reading materials. Myself & kids British Nationals.

Having perused a few sample questions believe it would be more economical for me to grow breasts, sit in the sun to acquire a darker shade of pale, wax & smooth the chin, speak with an effeminate tone & try & wing it myself. Will they notice!!!!

I think the idea is ok (at least acceptable) and the book is not bad either. However I don't know why they have picked Chapter 2,3 and 4 for the test especially when there are more useful information about daily life in the rest of the book.

Anyway, for the ones who cannot find the book or looking for some samples test, there is new website recently launched and it definitely worths a look. The address is

I don't understand the logic behind this test.The reason why I said that because, the mannerisms, the knowledge and understanding about the values and the behavioural pattern might not be the same for a person who migrated to this country.It cannot be budded from a later stage. I bet it is a revenue for the government and follow what Americans do.

I am glad that i do not have to take the test. it is humiliating. it is difficult as well, but pray that those who must take it will only need to take it once and be done with it.

I pased the life in the uk test for the first time because I was up to entry 3.

Government did the great thing with this test because if you want to become a british citizen you have to know something about the community where you live. Thank you alma
from manchester

after getting A + on my first semester in english A levels i have fail the test. i do not thing this is such a great idea. Most British born dont know the answers to those confusing questions? One question that i got was, How many Parliments are in the UK? and many. I am fluent in english and history but that questions.......
When i was taking the test there was a lady who could not speak even english but was a teacher from Poland and she passed becuose she was a history teacher she had the knowlage but what king of british can she be without speaking the launguage???????

can anyone tell me please wheter children's under the age of 18 or 16 HAVE TO DO THE TEST TOO????

I have lived here for 40 years since i was 7 years old and believe that peope who have lived here for such a long time should not have to take any test I've just got the book as my test is booked for the 8th March I hope i pass as I haven't got £34.00 to waste and plus i want to go on holiday for 20th July






It is very difficult for some people to spend this much money on these kind of test i think goverment should help on these matters.

I have been living in the UK for 6 years. I have two diplomas (obtained in the UK) and gew up English. I have a knowledge of the English language and culture. I read (with great difficulty) the book about four times (and fell asleep every time). I found it mind-numbingly boring.

I don't disagree with taking a test, but must it be so boring and uninteresting? Surely the history of the UK is not that boring. Anyway, I take my test tomorrow and I'm sure I will pass, but if I don't I honestly cannot be bothered reading the stupid thing again.

what are the questions then ????

hello ppl i does anyone know a website where you can practise the test on

thank you

hey guys, atleast try an remember and write some of the questions plz..i have my test tomorow, ive learned the book but still very horrified.
if any1 remmebr questions plz write here.

Lewis Wheeler

Trouble with revising for the test? Well look no futhur then here.

Firstly, are you bored of reading through the, 'The road to british Citzienship' book contsantly trying fevourishly to revise? If so then look no futhur then here.

I am here to show you a revolutionally new program directed at thoise attempting to becom British citizens, in short it is an expertly researched revision tool, compiled using chapters 2, 3, 4 of the 'A road to British Citizenship (2nd edition). This test incorporates a broad perspective on every chapter offering multiple choice answers and a question base of 168 qeustions overall.

This program is available from my web site:

There is a substantial amount of information regarding the tet and my program available to read.

From the words of one applicant who ued my program then took the test:

'It was amazing, I found reading through the book tiresome and boring but this program was something else, I have never seen anything like it, excellant design with well researched questions. An extremly good find, which im alsomost certain meant the difference between pass, and fail.'

If you wish to contact me please free free to email me at: [email protected]

Mr. Lewis Wheeler, Owner and Developer



Lewis Wheeler

You are correct. The chapters which appear on the main test are 2, 3 and 4. My step mum passe the test today. If you want help regarding revision please visit my web site, I supply pieces of information and an advanced interactive revision program.

Lewis Wheeler


All you need to know is in the chapters 2, 3 and 4. You can download the text of these chapters + lots of practice questions (to memorize better the material) from


Lewis Wheeler and Jos I am so so so grateful for your answer and wish you all the best in life.

Salim Sharif

I can understand everyone’s point of view. However, if some one wants to become Japanese or Chinese citizen (for example) or even want to become the citizen of your own country where you are originally from, wouldn't you normally expect that applicant to know the language, system, culture and laws before he/she becomes the citizens?

Now question about born and bred British whop doesn't know all the answers. Well, how well would you know about your own country's system, law and other stuff? It would be same for you as well.

I think only illiterate people or those who are very weak in english language and a bit aged would have difficulties. Other have to read the book and then go for the exam. I have bought the book and I found it easy. Yes it is true that a lot of things I also didn't know. But just for £34 I will not mind. People are ready to pay £500 to Immigration for their visa processing. In that case and exam fee for £34 is ok. I also do know that there are other fees for citizenship processing, However, I am against those people who cannot contribute anything else apart from tax in the UK. They can live with 'Indefinite Stay Permit' but if they find difficult to be a citizen- I really don't have any feeling for them.

Lewis Wheeler

Jos, just so you know im pretty sure its a copyright violation to use the book image on your web site, and your also saying you provide the entire booklet in a pdf format. Which is DEFINITLY a breach of copyright if not done with the home office's approval. Thats my understanding on... you can email me at: [email protected]

Lewis Wheeler

I was born & bred in this godforsaken country which I have grown to hate over the years.

I work hard and pay my taxes.

Can someone please tell me what pathetic moron come up with this test and what it is meant to prove?

I would rather people be accepted on their moral values than on some pathetic test which most british citizens would struggle with.

I believe it is an insult to all those wanting british citizenship to treat them in this appalling manner.

Britain & our allies fought a war against Hitler and his Nazi regime, yet isn't expecting someone to read a book and answer questions based upon it, a form of cleansing? By doing this we are excluding and punishing anyone with literacy problems or with a learning disability.

I would rather have someone with poor English Skills who is hard working and honest than someone with good learning skills who is for example a scrounger, a peadophile or a murderer.

"Life in the UK" is made up of some facts and some personal opinion and a heap of misleading information and has no bearing on whether or not someone would make a good citizen.

I have it on good authority that many of those people working in the immigration office could not past this test either - are these not good citizens?

Good Luck to all those of you seeking citizenship but in my opinion you are foolish I would rather leave this country than take their pathetic Pledge of Allegiance

i do agree to all of you. until now im still trying to memorise the dates and percentages etc.etc. its not easy bec. i work full time and have a family to look after. really, for me taking the test is really a waste of money and time. In my opinion it's better if they will just require us to attend a short lecture or seminar about life in the UK, no exams...just listen to them and understand more about life in Britain...i think that's more sensible..BUT we have no choice now...i still have to do i just have to be patient... gud luck to all of you out there....

Hi, its me again my first message is at the top well I have pass the test after the third time can you beleive that it cost me a total of £102.00 and to make matters worst I think they brought this test in to cut down on people applying for citezenship but its not working because I have been told I have to wait 6 months because of the amount of applicants with all the money they are taking off us you would think they would employ more staff so we wouldn't have to wait this long. Peace out

I know somebody who passed the test before this law came out and believe me.........she can't hardly speak english and she's have been here for over 5 years....I just don't undertand this,some british citizen I'm sure don't know the anwser of this question and we immigrants are supposed to know all this,is ridiculous,pathetic and another way to take people's money as usual.I mean...I can't get any worse ahh?????????

Lewis Wheeler

I understand your frustration, and you're right revising for this test is extremely difficult. But I seriously would direct you to my web site:

I supply a specliased piece of software for revising for this test, NOT a large amount of questions which are stuck in a PDF file with the answers in another but an interactive revision tool, and a cheap price. I also ATTEMPT to supply up-todate information regarding the Citizenship Test, if you are worried or need extra help my web site is one of the places to go.

Lewis Wheeler

tis idiot test is makeing me bonkers i can`t even sleep prporley.why can`t they make the test unessasery for people that have been living in this country for over 7 yrs.this test is alot of wasting money and time.I have been studying this blady test for 3 mounths and i stil don`t feel confident but i have to do this blady idiot useless test on friday 7th of april

Traon Software industries

Firstly, are you bored of reading through the, 'The road to british Citzienship' book contsantly trying fevourishly to revise? If so then look no futhur then here.

I am here to show you a revolutionally new program directed at thoise attempting to becom British citizens, in short it is an expertly researched revision tool, compiled using chapters 2, 3, 4 of the 'A road to British Citizenship (2nd edition). This test incorporates a broad perspective on every chapter offering multiple choice answers and a question base of 168 qeustions overall.

This program is available from my web site:

There is a substantial amount of information regarding the test and my program available to read.

From the words of one applicant who ued my program then took the test:

'It was amazing, I found reading through the book tiresome and boring but this program was something else, I have never seen anything like it, excellant design with well researched questions. An extremly good find, which im alsomost certain meant the difference between pass, and fail.'

If you wish to contact me please free free to email me at: crt (at)

Traon Software Industries

If you are living in this country long enough than chapter 2 and 3 will be easy to swallow. Unfortunately chapter 4 requires some effort even if you were born in this country.

There is a free website available (they now have a dicussion forum as well) for both study material and sample tests. Just visit

If you are still not confident enough than I suggest check few websites available on this page for additional material. It will just be a piece of cake. Believe me, I've been there.

Well..i bought the book from WHSmith and tried to read everything from the first page and i am sure i am through 3rd chapter and i am struggling to dodge this whole thing.

On personal level as much as i dont like doing any tests but i think if one really want to intergrate and live in this country then its a brilliant idea to have a the saying goes if you go to Rome...

on the otherhand i can see some budding businessmen are making money out of this ..

I am a 3rd yr university student studying International Relations and Politics(which includes the history of Britain and its political figures such as Thomas Hobes,William Wilberforce to John Stuart Mill and Edmund Burke.

Now when i tried to ask them if i can get an excemption guess what i was answerd?

no one knew the answer

so what i have done is return the life in the UK book to the shelf and I am concentrationg with researching for my desertation on privatization of railways in UK!

does anyone know anything about excemptions?


All the best to everyone doing the test

I practiced for my UK citizenship test using

I thought they were excellent - the web site is packed with useful information and the practice tests helped me loads. I highly recommend the web site, it sure helped me pass.

Best of luck to everyone.

Hi, is anyone interested in helping me? i'm writing a paper on the uk test, specifically on what people think about it. do you think it is usefull or just a waste of time? do you think the government should change it concentrating more on history or other subjects?
thank you for any comment!

Hi Sara:

we have a poll on our site

and the question is exactly what you are asking... 377 people voted so far. Good luck with your paper! If you need more info, don't hesitate to contact me.


my wife took the test on 6th july after attending local english classes for three months.
unfortunatley she failed.since taking the test she has been unable to sleep at night and has a constant headache all my opinion the governnment should scrap the tests as it's having a ngative/psycological effect on could even lead to a devorce with the amount of friction it's cuasing between partners.

I want to know wht will happen after the test?? no ones gonna remember any of it.. even the ppl born here don't know the answers.. most of the questions are unrelated like how many ppl are there in the house of commons? I bet that brish born ppl don't know these questions.. I mean it should just be a basic english questions and common sense questions on how to be a gud citizen. Oh well my test is tomorrow fingers crossed I should pass.

why do we have to spend £9.99 for the book and then more money for the questions and answers test?? why not make the book similar to the driving test one which has a good facility of practicing. not forgeting even more money for the test £34.00... come on stop making money from immigrants.

To be honest im not sure why people have to take this tests considering that evenenglish people dont know most of the answers.... and what is it about politics that the goverment wants us to know so much, i personly dont care who is in house number 10... i recon they should make everyone take this test, as soon as children finish school. :) :) :) :)

What axactly is the title of this book with all the information on british citizenship

Bill - Scotland

My wife has been teaching Higher Level English in Secondary Schools here for 5 years!! The irony is that she was recruited by the Education Authorities to come and teach in England.Now we have to take this test to become citizens. The book that we must learn from, is riddled with grammatical and spelling errors. How ludicrous.
As for the subject matter.....well, it is patronising , to say the least. But, what can you do? Can't wait for the passport!!!

Hi thanks I am somali student in somalia now so I need to improve my English language so that I think you may help me..

thanks and by

the Man without the country

This is exactly true that why we need to pay fees for the test £34 if we faild than booking again and again, so what for is it. we are not stupid if forign people coming in this country the all know about English languge and the studying as well so there is no point to buy the book and than pay fees for the test, if we are lucky to pass it otherwise pay for the next time and do it again and again. stop it please do not folowing the old prociger and Amparialisty way, I think paying Tax is enaugh for Governament that the collected from every empolyment there is no need it to pay extra money for that. what do you think is making money in this country is easy? no never 12 hours work like standing all the time. than you makin money for easy way. it's better to change the (citizanshipe) to (Bussnisshipe).you are very claver and doing good Bussnis.

Hi All,

Found an excellent website for those preparing for the Life in the UK test.

There are 720 Questions to practice with, you will definitley be prepared if you use this resource, so many people have recommended this to me, I just passed my test on Thursday. After studying 720 question I was totally prepared.

Hope people find this useful

hi their,please do you know the answears to the questions on life in the uk.please i can,t bare to fail it the second time.please can you help me.please please

Hello all,

Just to let you all know that i passed my test first time, im so pleased u guys have no idea yeahhhh!!! Guys plzz plzz and plzz take all your time when doing ur test ok, no hurry no rush rush ok, bcoz its the matter of £34 pound also reading all over again ok, and i know no one wants that ;) also plzz read chapter 2,3,4 properly! Anyway good luck all of you, plzzz i recommend 1 useful site to you all its (britishcitizenship-test), its very very & very useful, it got 720 questions from them chapters 2,3,4 and have all the information about the test to test centres, plzzz do have a look at it, i bought the CD 3 weeks before i booked my test, it just took me 5 minutes to complete the whole 24 questions, but i was taking my time to go on every single question again and again, i didn't wanted to lose my £34 pound, now i even applied for my citizenship certificate, hopefully it will arrive in 3 or 4 months, finger cross!! Guys this CD is worth the money and the feedback for this site is really useful do read it, my sister inlaw does know very little english but she is finding it very useful like me, so best of luck, have a nice day! Hope you all pass the test soon!! Take care everybody.

Bye Bye :))

Hi Uche, Don't worry you'll pass the test, plzz read the chapter 2,3,4 and buy this CD britishcitizenship-test it got 720 questions and also it does have chapters 2,3,4. So you don't need to buy a Life in the UK Book seperatly. Just go over the questions and read the chapters and when you're doing the tests do take your time, so if you can't think of the answer you'll remeber it later, you have 45 minutes and these are alot of minutes to just complete 24 questions, just stay positive and be ready, don't book the test if you think you're not ready ok!! Best of luck, take care, Bye!

Hi any one who recently took their test please advise me on how i can go on about booking the test? Can i book online?

Hi Lala,

Take a look at "Life in the UK test website", they have detailed information on how to book a test on their site:

As mentioned by many people here failing the test is frustrating as you may have to pay another £34. Consider the following easy steps to avoid disappointments:
1)Buy the handbook ('Life in the United Kingdom: A Journey to Citizenship')
2) Read chapters 2,3 and 4
3) After reading each chapter do a revision and if possible attend some practice test from that chapter.
Chapterwise test is something you don't find in may sites. I recommend you have a look at:

In any case don't appear for the test unless you have covered the handbook at least once.


hi there...
i have bought a book and practiced all the question that needs to be revised and im ready for the exam, but i have a problem i dont seem to know where to book an exam. can any one help me and lead me on how to book an exam for the citizenship.
thank you


To book a test contact a test centre during opening hours by telephone or in person.

Use the following web address to find your nearest test center(If you need help with finding a test centre, call the Life in the UK Test Helpline on 0800 0154245)

These information were taken from uk test website, to read more click the link below:
For more resources and sample questions:

Hi Everyone.
I have just read all the comments on this site so far.....and I would like everyone to know that I am running a British Citizenship test support group. There are two 2 hour sessions each week. Tuesday 17:30 to 19:30 and Friday 10:00 to 12:00. In the Tuesday session we,as a group, read a chapter from the book, then practise the test questions together to help gain confidence. The class is repeated every Friday morning, The classes are held in Doncaster at the YMCA and there is no charge to attend, we even throw in a free cuppa and a biscuit or two!
I will be running the sessions every week until October 2007 when my funding will expire.
for further information contact [email protected] telephone 01302 342148

Yay! I passed the test. The questions aren't difficult (they aren't going to ask for the square root of 1225) however you do need to prepare and study the right materials.

I picked up a useful study guide called British Citizenship Test: Study Guide - (the clue is in the title!). It covered everything I needed to learn plus it was nicely laid out and easy to read. They also have a website where you can take practice test questions is the link.

I'm off to send off my application now. Only a few more steps to go before I get the passport.

I live in Canada and recently heard about the citizenship exam.

I am a few days away from launching a website that has practice versions of different countries citzizenship exams

Does anybody in Britain have the capability to create a practice version of the Britain citizenship exam? We sell the practice version and they can take it as many times as they want and it makes sure sthey only spend the $34 once...and it helps them study for the test in an actual testing environemnt.

WE share the revenue with who ever supplies the content

I ain't bothered about this test!!
You have to read a book which contains over 100 pages!!And when the test comes, the things I learned about, was a couple!!Then I get 14 out of 18!!!
I think it's just their fault!!!
NOT OURS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I purchaced the 90 days online test for the British citizenship test but the questions were very diffecult to gess the answer and I know that If we ask any person who is British to answer these question he will fail!!!!!
I think that It will be better if they just exam us in English language. My uncle lives here for about 13 years now and when he wanted to apply for the citizenship they asked him a few questions like: If you want to go to buy something how will you ask the shop assistent to get it? questions like that is easy to answer.So I hope that they change their mind and make it simple.

i really hope you mean people like traon will stop tryin to take advantage of people when they are panicin and tryin to make a quid or two....i have my test on monday...i have read chapters 2,3,4 and by 'googling' uk citizen test practice questions i have found loads of free sample questions which have pointed out things i missed initially...i have also found it useful to go read up the refs in ( ) at the end of some paragraphs in e.g chapter 2 it explains the section better so you cah get some background understanding on it...firstly dont panic cos then your mind will not absorb anything..then take you time and read it slowly...its not that many pages..concentrate... i feel really confident about it now...made notes along the way and noted down the ans to ques i didnt know i will go over my key points and figures on sun/mon morning...i am sure i will be fine...MY DEAR FRIENDS OUT THERE WHO ARE TAKING THIS TEST DONT LET PEOPLE LIKE TRAON FOOL YOU TO THINK THAT BY PAYING HIM 8 OR 9 POUNDS WILL SOLVE YOUR PROBS COS WHICH EVER ROUTE YOU CHOOSE YOU HAVE TO STUDY FOR THE TEST AND THATS THE BOTTTOM LINE....GOOD LUCK,,,YOU HAVE COME THIS FAR IN YOUR JOURNEY TO BRIT CITIZENSHIP...YOU CAN DO THIS FOR YOURSELF...YOU DONT HAVE TO PAY SOME OTHER PERSON TO PASS THE TEST COS THEY CAN NOT ASSURE YOU THAT YOU WILL PASS THEY JUST CARE ABOUT THE MONEY SO DONT DO IT...ITS BETTER TO SAVE THAT MONEY AND TAKE IT AGAIN IF YOU MUST...

Very worried...

Hi, I just found out in the last week that from 2nd April 2007 you need to pass the citizenship test to get Idefinite Leave to Remain(ILR) in the UK. My husband arrived on a marriage visa and the earliest we can apply for ILR is April 13th 2007 so he has to take the test even though we're not applying for British Citizenship yet. I signed him up to a website that gives you unlimited practice access for 90 days and he's been practicing when possible. We have a 9 month old baby and we work full-time so we're really busy even then he spent 3/4 days non-stop on this site and has now made himself sick with worry. Everytime he sits in front of the computer or looks at the Life in the UK book he breaks out in a sweat, feels dizzy and feels like throwing up. This test is the biggest joke i've ever seen and I'm very angry and upset. We don't need this stress but reading those long difficult questions is enough to send anyone crazy. i am British born and bred, 28 yrs old and I tried the test several times and i couldn't answer most of it. How on earth can they expect foreign nationals to know this stuff! It's ridiculous!! I wish I never found this out because now my husband is worrying all day. If he had to take the test only for Citizenship then we would wait months or years for his English to improve or until he felt confident to take the test but his visa expires in 2 and a half months and he MUST pass this just to stay in the country with us! How much pressure can he take? He has changed so much in these few days from worrying, he is so depressed. He is working, paying taxes and contributing to society. He knows he answers to all the questions in our language. If you ask him What is the Council of Ministers? he will know the answer but in our language. they should at least allow people to take the test in their own language like the driving theory test, because people will still have to know everything about the UK and about being Britsh to pass the test. He just doesn't know how the questions and answers translate into our language. This stupid test is just a ploy for the governement to make money off vulnerable people! Please pray for us, i don't know how i can offer him any comfort.

I think this test is ridiculous.yes, a certain level of proficiency in English is useful but I just went on the website to have a look and I didn't know the answer to any of those questions!! and i was born and raised in the UK! how do they expect people to learn all this stuff. My boyfriend is Jamaican and has only 1 year left before he can apply for indefinate leave to remain, now he has found out he needs to take this test too! he speaks english but his ready and writing aren't all that good. that doesnt stop the NHS employing him and making him employee of the month! the government are just making more money, as if it wasnt expensive enough to get the indefinate. pity theres nothing we can do....

Marianne Luton

I took the exam a few months back and it was very easy.. I finished in about 5 min. The questions were very straightforward and easy to understand.

Its good they didnt ask what year stuff happened, cos Im very bad with dates like that. The study material is more than enough so you dont need to do any additional work.

However I did notice that quiet a few of the guys sitting for the exam did not understand the questions.

The book tends to be very dummed down at times, from my point of view, and I got the feeling that the way they have put things seems like its aimed for people who have no knowledge of anything in life. So I found the book very boring. The best part for me was the history, which wasnt included, and the various government stuff.

mariams report of the stupid test

This test drives me nuts.I can't take this bloody test.

Thats my report pess respeked.

hey...It's difficult to get the Life in the Uk Test. I also don't know take the test for what. Because I'm only work in the restoran and cook delicious food to everyone. it's funny..actually a lot of british people also don't know exactly in the uk life, I'm just wonder about why? Waste time and waste money, I'm the one sleepless in evernight. I am worker 12 hours, and want to reading life in the uk, I'm work hard everyday and felt tired. actually I was been in the uk since 5 years ago, what is the uk life? in fact I'm the one know and understanding uk culture and life.

neil nicholson

My wife has indefinite leave to remain and has been at college for the last three years in Scotland learning English and now has a fantastic grip of the English language.She bought the blue book and got via ebay the cards which test you.She knows the answers to all the test questions on the cards and was confident she would pass first time.She sat the test and failed.The reason was that the questions are TWISTED to make it difficult so that they can get ANOTHER £34 from you every time.For example the blue book says as an example the population of Scotland is 5.2 million.The question about this in the test was "What percentage of the total UK population live in Scotland" This totally threw my wife as she is great at English but not too hot at MATHEMATICS.This was not the only question that was equally as devious!! For God's sake the test is difficult enough for people whose first language is not English!!!!!!!!Another ploy from this money grabbing Government!!!!!!!!!

I passed my exam recently. Was a piece of cake .. There are many websites available where you can practice the test before you go and give the test.

Helps you Brush up your knowledge and gives you the needed courage to go and give the exam. and more over i found similar questions asked in the exam too... so it made life more easy . Good luck with your exam.


my husband is due to apply for for citizenship in the uk in august, and i have already researched the information needed to take the test, i have attempted to take the test myself, and i myself a british citizen was uanble to answer most of the questions, this is ridiculous, the governemnt are just finding ways to make more money. when i first heard there was a test, i thought it would be an englisg reading and grammer test, not questions like statistics of how many worrking mums are there in the uk, and useless info that im not bothered about, This is so stressful,this could break our marriage up, as it is so stressful.

I'm wondering which section is the most important to revise.

Have found all the test material - chapters 2,3 and 4 ara available at Looks like its free, so no intention of buying the book


I found this web site very useful when it comes to revision

These books are also very useful too:
The British Citizenship Test
British Citizenship Test: Study Guide ( [free sample test]

Good luck everyone. ;-)

Hello to my fellow immigrants,

There are three fundamental problems with this 'Life in UK test'.

The book itself is £9.99 followed by £34 for the test. It's designed to fustrate me as it's simply another governments scheming way to rip my off, like paying £4 for a bus ride to and from the test centre wasn't bad enough!

Secondly, it's a course of injustice legislation (yet again) for those who received their nationality before 01.11.04. I hardly think the likelihood for many Brits interest in knowing which year the voting act took place (1969). Let's face it; many would fail on common sense answers.

Lastly, if you have passed the test...good for you! On one hand, if you ask me this TEST is a lot of bollox. On the other, alike you and me as an immigrant and despite Equal Rights Acts, the question remains whether we will remain as immigrants or allowing ourselves with a red passport going to change anything? Please feel free to ponder.

This is a pretty small price to pay to trade our own countries what are you waiting for? Oh of course, 'a good ol' pint daaan the pub' to celebrate.

Good luck everyone!


Why the politician Questions? Why the percentage? The Numbers? " Are they testing your STATISTIC??" yea... I guess so!

We have to go for extra miles to just be with our partners?! Come on, Cut the craps! From the Fiance /fiancee Visa, it costs ££, from it to the Settlement Visa, that costs ££, and then it's like a never ending process, one after another! Before I could see my wage, I have paid out £1000+ for just those VISAsss. And now we have to buy the book (1st edition awaiting for the 2nd edition?) and sitting for the nonsense test!

The questions are based on chapters 2 to 4 of the book "Life in the United Kingdom: A Journey to Citizenship". However from 2 April 2007 a NEW VERSION of the test will be based on chapters 2, 3, 4, 5 & 6 of a revised handbook, due to be published early in 2007. Does it mean people who took the test with the old version need to resit for the NEW VERSION? Well... the answer is unknown.

How is it possible for us to pass the test since the Citizenship guide fails its history exam!!

It was intended as an invaluable guide for immigrants, a breakdown on all matters of British culture, history and tradition that would gently guide the reader along the "journey to citizenship".

But according to irate historians, a new 146-page government booklet is leading would-be citizens astray with a confusing array of historical errors, questionable suppositions and glaring misquotes.

In perhaps the most damning mistake of all, the booklet, entitled "Life in the United Kingdom: a Journey to Citizenship," manages to make a mess of one of Winston Churchill's most famous dictums.

Here are many critics of the study materials for the test. Many of the claims in the materials are not factually correct.

* Claim: Describing the fighter pilots in the second world war, Winston Churchill said: "Never in the course of human conflict have so many owed so much to so few."
o Fact: He actually said: "Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few."

* Claim: Queen Mary "came to the throne with Spanish support".
o Fact: Mary defeated Lady Jane Grey's bid to usurp the throne with a huge wave of English support

* Claim: Great Britain includes Northern Ireland
o Fact: The United Kingdom includes Northern Ireland. Great Britain is made up of England, Wales and Scotland.

* Claim: Charles II was recalled from exile in France
o Fact: He was recalled from Holland

* Claim: The European Union was founded by five members Belgium, France, West Germany, Luxembourg and Netherlands
o Fact: There were six founding members. Italy is missing as a founding member state of the European Union (then known as the European Economic Community).

What happened to the people who can't pass the test for so many times?
"Oh you gotta leave! Leave your husband/ wife, your kids.. and pack your bag, and go home!" what a joke! I bet you a million £, give this test to those local 100% British, they aint got a clue ! Scumbag!

We come to this country without being "invited", and this is what happen!

My husband has Morrocan nationality, and I am British. We arrived in the Uk together in April 2006 and he has a 2 year settlement visa which will expire in April 2008. We now find that the government have moved the goalposts and to apply for ILR he must pass a Life in The UK test or achieve the necessary standard on an ESOL course. He has been waiting for a place on an ESOL course for 7 months now, but as these courses are oversubscribed there is no guarantee that a place will become available before his visa expires. He reads and writes in arabic script and is learning English by ear and has integrated well into British life. He is employed and we have no recourse for public funds and so are not a drain on the economy.
We can accept the reasoning behind a UK life test for foreign nationals applying for a British passport, but feel it is totally unrealistic to expect someone to learn to speak, read and write sufficient English within a relatively short time in the Country, in order to pass an exam answering questions that are equivalent to something on 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire'. Ask the British audience and I'd take a bet that they'd have trouble in coming up with the correct answers. In addition to Arabic (classic + Morrocan) my husband speaks Castellano Spanish and Portuguese (both self taught). I studied Castellano in Spain for 4 years, but still wouldn't be able to pass a written exam in the language. There are British who have been living in Spain for 30 years+ and havn't bothered to learn anything of the language, in fact I believe the British are notorious for non-integration as ex-pats abroad. The government are aware that there are too few ESOL courses available to cope with the new regulations and have 'promised' to address the problem. In this case, why wasn't the lack of courses remedied before the new regulations came into force? It appears to be discrimination, knowing that the majority of non English speaking foreign nationals will fail the test, (that even the majority of British would struggle to pass) and offering no available course support to enable them to study to the level required within a relatively short period of time. The Government recommend a private college course in the absence of an ESOL course. Have they any idea of the course fees for private colleges? The standard has been set, with no support or realistic way to achieve the standard in the time given.

i need all the answer plz


I am a British citizen, born here in the UK and damn this seems harder than getting a degree or a job. First of all it's like doing a PhD on history and life in the uk and as I know, you need to be very brainy for that.

Also where people are concerned about indefinite stay in the UK after April 2007, then as far as I am concerned, you don't need to do this silly test, you only need to prove that you are studying a combined English language and life in the uk course.

So don't worry too much, and yes this test is a load of rubbish if I am expected to know this much about the UK.

I wonder how long it will be before the goal posts are moved again. Somebody I guess has made and will make alot of money from these tests, which are a good idea on the whole, but some of the information in these books are now years out of date (being based on the census of 2001).
If we really want to educate immigrants with the UK culture then why not incorporate the contents of these books into the ESOL language study courses. My wife attends college every day on a ESOL course and not once is anything in these books mentioned or taught. The only culture that appears to be talked about is that of the middle eastern countries.
My wife spent many weeks studying for this course and practising using the website tests, which by the end she would regularly get 100% correct. Yet would you believe it, when she attended the test she failed. It was said she got nine questions incorrect. Impossible I say. But when you ask to see what questions she got wrong, they cannot tell you or show you. Smells of a money making racket to me. Does anybody pass this test first time around. Maybe this is a common trend. I suppose it is any easy way of making extra money.

its not gud ,,did u hear dat its really not gud...

stephen evans

I'm fed up with people complaining about this test. I'm British, I've paid Tax all my life, i deserve to live here. Immigrants have to prove they want to stay, whether they think the test is appropriate or not.
Just amazed to read that most people on here can't even spell English words, get a grip.

stephen evans

Further more, what does it matter that some British people can't pass the test! We don't have to! We were born here and contributed to British Society.
Incase you didn't realise the country is over-populated, if this test halts the rapid immigration then it can only be a good thing. If you're not happy with it, go back to your birth country.

Born Brits contributed, and we didn't? I've been here 7 years, and have worked and paid taxes, as well as participated in a few volunteer services. That's more than I can say for the 60% on the dole, who are Born Brits!

Re: steven evans
I can understand your point of view. It is certainly valid because there is a huge increase of workers using the UK purely for work and they are taking no trouble whatsoever to attempt to learn even basic English. I support the idea that integration must include linguistic assimilation at one and the same time.
I disagree with the idea of number-crunching and memorising for its own sake. The test sounds like an extract of statistical data and precious little else.
I have read the book recently and I negatively commented about numerous mistakes (were they deliberate?) and inaccuracies. If the H.O. requires any knowledge of life in the UK they should ensure the provided information is up-to-date, without howlers and written in a much better style. The current version is rather sad and as dull as ditchwater.
I doubt passing the test would make people better citizens. The test will definitely not halt immigration as you hope. Yet there are many people from the EU who can settle in this country (though not necessarily applying for the IRL and citizenship) and make it even more over-populated. By the way, how would you feel in the same situation if the Spanish government were to introduce a similar test for numerous Brits living in the Costa Brava area?
Yet another aspect - there are many highly-qualified people arriving in this country (under HSMP, for example), contributing to life in the UK. Compared to Brits their education and skills did not cost this country a penny! I call that a bargain!

I personally do not have any problem with the test, which I think justified. If you do not want to be part of this country or do not want to know what going on here you must not bother ask to immigrate in the first place. However the problem lays with the new fees the immigration authorities brought forward... £ 950 for indefinite leave to remain!!!!
This means only one thing; the government seems to say 'I know you will be happy to pay to get your ILR, so lets make the maximum profit from you'
That is toooooo much, really too much.

I have started a petition on the downing street on this topic . The test has now been extended to settlement visas . The fees for applications have also gone up by 140% on average . Totally unjustified .

HI every body
I paas my test for British citizen at first time easily .
you know why I am passed it easily??!! can you imagine , because I am persian lol iranian inteligent boy who passed his exam very easily at first and my girl firend she said to me I am not wondering because i knew you definitely will pass your exam .

This is about my exam cool belive me but its better to buy book and cd together it will help full if you use the cd aswell on computer .
Hve a great day forevery body here .
* I had my level 2 in Numeracy and level 2 in literacy .

i dont minde the british sitizenship went ok for me.i heve scored 16 aut of 24 grait.still failed the test,soo i new other questions that i deserve to win more points and i now thet i have answer it correctly,i could have pass the test no problem i think,but why do they send me autside and waiting for my score so they could mess with my test.sooo plus pay for that much mony 34 paunds its not chep.i think something is going on on these senters,only failed yesterday.
totally i will ring them tomorow and finde aut,because i could of styd there and see my test my self if i have pass it or not.
SO the hole thing is MONY RIP OFF.

roberto blake

Well, the trouble is there are lots of bits of bad advice about for the test. It is all multiple choice or true/false objective type questions and most of it is useful stuff about water, telephone, rent etc (life in the United Kingdom chapter 5) so there is no need to memorise facts about anglo-saxons (chapter 1) or legal procudures or sources of help (chapters 7 and 8). The new test and book are a lot simpler than the old one and the price of the test is still £34 - so although the settlement process is expensive and choatic in general the actual test is not too bad. A good practice site is newuktest which also gives language help.

I only recently passed the test, but I know I only just passed it. I know multiple choice is supposed to be easy, but you do need 18 out of 24 questions to get a pass. I am writing about my experiences in my blog below:

OK, all the above comments are making me really scared. I have just bought the official book today (the new one to be used from April 2007) Have been going thru it, seems ok, just all the dates and percentages etc. It is a multiple choice test right?? So can it really be that hard, passed my theory driving test fine so is it similar?? Has anyone been for the test since the new test was introduced in April?

Hey..Stephen is very clear that you have no understanding of the life of the honest real people that come to this country.
My wife is from Thailand and is a teacher in Thailand,so she is not stupid we have studied this exam for citizenship, i could not answer any of these questions i am 60 years old and have lived here all my life paying my taxes, my wife should be able to live here with me without this extra problem,it was hard enough to get her visa in the first place
My problem is all the people that are coming into the UK from the EU taking our Jobs our housing, then sending their wages out of the UK, how is this good for our country, they DO NOT HAVE to take the test only if the want to get a UK passport, they have a choice

I agree wholeheartedly with Bruce. I too am British born and bred, I've worked and paid taxes all my life, 6 years of which were spent serving this country. All I want to do is live in peace with my wife and family. We have paid huge sums of money and jumped through every hoop that has been placed in our path in order to do so. Now we are facing the prospect of our family being broken up and our lives ruined because of this totally inhumane and unjust law and this ridiculous test.

Stephen Evans should reflect that this country went to war to safeguard the rights of people not to be victimised and persecuted on account of their race or ethnicity. This test smacks of the Nazi test of Aryan purity and represents an injustice of similar magnitude. As Bruce points out, it does nothing to stem the tide of miscreants flooding into the UK - it only hits those families and individuals who have tried to follow the law and behave responsibly. It is discriminatory,racist and totally unjustifiable on any grounds other than as a way to exclude decent people from the UK and to rip them off.

People, we have to fight this injustice: Please please please - write to your MP and PROTEST!

I have created a new website with free questions. Please try it and I hope you will find it helpful (

I just passed my test! Happy I don't have to remember all those stupid figures now. Not gonna make me a better citizen! For me I try were they have online tests and the book is there too.

Virendra Nakrani

you can buy the book from WHSmith also but it is called British citizenship Test rather then life in UK test.

I am happy that I passed my test last Saturday. I spent 3 days to read the handbook and practice the questions from each chapter. The questions in the test centre were very similar to what I practiced online at:

I think I made one mistake, but you will not be told that how many you got wrong or what is your score.

Good luck to those who are preparing for it.


I think this test is just a money making scheme.
it is not fair,As many people only want settlement in the uk and not citizenship. and due to this test people have to apply for Visa extensions. In which home office caseworkers use their discreation on how long they give people it could be up to a month or longer. These Extensions are not cheap £395.

And then even when passed life in the uk test you then have to pay £750 for settlement.

how do they think people can aford to pay this amount of money they have to run a house and family which is expensive.

I found the home office help line not very helpful actually useful they gave me wrong information a numerous of times and also do not tell you about other options Available.

I have now recently found out that their is another option in which people who are not to English level 3 they can do an Esol Course with citerzenship. which covers information from life in the uk book. And this is a 9 to 10 week Course.
The only thing is these course are not available and not being funded.
so they are stating this is a option but not providing it.
You might be able to find private courses or the odd Esol with Citizenship Course.
but very likly.

My husband is sick with worry and does not eat and sleep that much as this is very stressful.
it is affecting all of us as a family.

Goodluck to everyone going through these bad times.

Fred Casegrande

I work with refugees and asylum seekers as a volunteer - and I think this test is awful. How does it prove that you're a good citizen if you know that 10% rather than 20% of the UK population is Roman Catholic?

And in the age of the internet (so strongly advocated by the government) the book is not available online, and for free. Nor does it have an index, so you can look up what you don't know. The whole thing smells of greed and is badly thought through.

I think volunteers should get together to help applicants pass the test.

Mustafa Muflehi

I don't think you would have heard such an experience:

My wife perpared for this exam for two ongoing months. The preparation was so intensive. She has managed to pass it on 29/04/2006 with flying colours. We are now in July 2007 and she has not yet received the citizenship even though she applied on 18/09/2006. To our utter surprise, she has received a letter asking her to re-sit the test because there were allegations against the test, where she has taken it at, in response to allegations that some of the tests were administered illegally even though she has attained a well deserved pass under a strict and confined exam conditions.

It is extremely frustrating that after 1 year, the home office returns to ask for a resit. It is grotesguely unfair, and candidates should not have been penalised for any unlawful activities carried out by the test centre.

She is now going through the preparation again on the new edition! It really beggars believe..!!

So, be aware where you take your test at. Make sure the centre has a good reputation otherwise you will encounter a nightmare!!

I have taken the Life in the UK Test last year in May 2006 and passed at City Wide Centre in sheffield.After 3 months i got a letter from the home affice inviting me to the ceremony. WHen i phoned and try book the ceremony I was told that the home office has postponed the ceremony for those people have taken the test at CIty make the story short i phoned the home office and i was informed that there were problem at the centre and I have to wait for the letter so from them how to re-sit the test. I was fuming..I took the test fair and square and now i've been penalized by other people's mistake and stupidity. Quess what, i just got the letter last weekend, just couldn't believe i waited almost 5 months for that letter. Now i have to re-sit again.

The system didn't work, what is the guarantee that what happened at City Wide test centre in sheffield is not happening in other test centre?

hi,i took the test on the 7-7-2007 and i passed ,eventhough i only studyed the book for in 3 days ,the book is full of informations is less likely to use in the future,informations british citizen won't even know!so i can see why WE should bother know it plus the money making scheme beyond it ,the fees for the test is £34 and the fees for the checking servise is £40 and the big bang is the fees for the naturlaization which is £655 i just can't see why all this money for?we left our country for a better life and to get a job and the wage we get won't be enough to secure all the fees to become british,so i had to starve for a month to be able to offord all these money to have a british sitizen.
i think the whole idea is wrong and unfaire because when english people go to my home country(egypt)to leave there ,we don't ask for all that money nor have to speak arabic.

Hi all,
Please don't worry if you failed the exam, I have written a simple guide to passing.
This can be found at
All the best

I personally think the test is a joke. Another way to make money out of people. I have lived here 10 years been married 4 years to a Brit and even he doesnt know the answers. I work full time have no time to study and from what I heard the test is hard with % and dates. Who cares about dates..I think you should only do the test if you from a country that doesnt speak English.

david bolwell

hi all

So what do you do if your wife doesnt have the level of english to pass the test? My wife will not be fluent enough to be able to take and pass this test. We can not do the esol course as the nearest one is 25 miles away and my wife looks after our baby while i work and we just dont have the time to do it. So if you cannt do either what options do you have? Keep buying 2 year visas which cost crazy money ( and are apparently going up in price) or leave the country. This is my problem.
I have a site at which you can visit to learn more or to tell your own story or leave advice for others.

can any one passed his test sell his book for me?

it is not very hard to study that little dont need to worry about it!you can study if you want

Why i think the test is a joke....well there is so many reasons, firstly the centre where i had the test took 45 minutes to get ready the whole process was a joke the queue at the centre was too long for 3 people to manage and there chip and pin machine wasn't even working i had to loss my place in the queue to go outside and get cash, one of the supervisor couldn't even make the difference between the letter G and J we took 2 minutes just to enter my post code in the system and instead of asking me for my RECEIPT she asked me for my gives you a lot to think about...anyway after 1 hour waiting to start the test it took me 5 minutes to finish and pass the stupid test.My advise will be to those who will take the test is...of course read the boring book but try to get those cheap multiple choice test book or those one online practice them two days before your test so that everything is fresh in your head.You need to get 75% right which leave you with 6 answers out of 24 sure that you get 18 right...the trick is done!!good luck

has the full text of the book, downloadable. Save yourself the 10 quid by getting it at this site. There are sample questions as well.

Don't worry if the test is too hard for you!

there is always a way out... guess what? Get some training sessions and practice on CD or practice online....

Hi any one got the software ? can upload it somewhere so we can share it thanks

It is frustrating to go through all those pages of the new book. Does anyone know whether we are supposed to learn all chapters or only 2,3 and 4 of the new book for the test?

someone who born in a country outside EU

Hi All,

I am going to take this exam on first week of September. So many stupid topics which I in my life may never come across or botherd about but I still have to push them in my brian for my test day and can forget them once i get my citizenship and i will still be a citizen like all those born british people who dont know the answers to 90% of the material in this book.
Well, we have all the right to ask you to do anything, you have to pay the price, I feel as someone from government officials is whispering in my ear and I cant do anything more than giving a smile back.

Wish me best of Luck

It is a rather worrying state of affairs when immigration status is dependant on ones ability to recall statistical and demographic data which is safe to say most will never use again in their lifetime. I would have thought it more practical to test a person's ability to fit into "society" by passing firstly, a basic English test which I assume is generally more helpful than knowing the ratio of Scottish to English people, or perhaps what benefits a pregnant woman can receive.

Needless to say, I had a look at some of the trial questions and did not know many of the answers. I generally consider myself to be fairly educated, to my regions of expertise and I feel that it has not hindered by ability to live in the UK nor have I felt left out by this life changing anecdotes that I am obviously missing out on to make me a better citizen.

I believe the general feel is that the test is ridiculous, and another difficult and unnecessary hoop that our elected government are making foreign nationals jump through to live in this country.

To all people who have to take the test, I wish you the very best of luck.

I can see from some of the truly awful spelling and grammar of those writing above that the test should be focussing more on an individual's ability to produce correct English. Knowing facts such as where The Beatles came from and when England last won the World Cup may have its merits, but first place should go to having a good grasp of the written language.

If I had my way, all potential UK citizens should be able to pass CAE - and that includes those who were born here. We could then 'deport' all those awful chavs and other underclasslings to some place like, erm, Zimbabwe, where the level of broken English is similar to theirs !

My husband came to the UK in Summer 2006 and was given the 2 year leave to remain. He had never spoken a word of English before he came here. Immediately he decided that it would be better to enrol on an English course at the local college for a year and not work, so he would be able to communicate freely. He passed his Cambridge Level Entry 2 Exam in June 2007. However this course was useless in the fact that it does not contain any citizenship content. Since June he has been working with the parks division of the local council and integrating with all his British colleagues ( he is the pub with them most nights!) Now, he has stop all of this and go back to take a course with a citizenship element, what a waste of time. I am truly angry, I am British myself, with a university degree and good with general knowledge. I failed the Life in Britain sample test on the internet that I took. The person who has decided to introduce these stupid new rules, deserves to be shot, why are people with genuine foreign partners, always penalised, having to pay ridiculous visa fees and now study materials. I find the whole thing very colonial. Is it relevant to know that Wimbledon is a tennis tournament, when the person who is taking the test does not even have a tennis court in his own country? This should be scrapped and action is needed against this arrogant and ill thought law.

I am hearlty happy when see this news.i believe what is the process to do?plz mail me.bye.

Alexi Mostrous

Hi there,

I'm a reporter in Newcastle and would like to talk to anyone in the Newcastle/Northumberland area who is going to take their citizenship test / has taken it and failed.

I'm particularly interested in anyone who has lived in the UK for a long time and is in danger or worried about getting kicked out.

Thanks very much in advance. Please email me at [email protected] or call me on 07799881719.

Alexi Mostrous

I took the test myself and I believe I scored full marks. There was nothing I had not prepared for from the topics given, many of which I had never read about. The test, I believe, is designed to make literacy the most common factor of those people who are accepted as citizens. It's not what you know or don't know but whether you can actually apply yourself to read something, understand it and recognise it later on the test. Many British citizens don't know the material on this test but the majority can read and would be able to do it if they were forced. And many, of course, would not be able to do it if they hate reading or memorising.

hi all i hope everyone pass his test and i wish the best for all.
me tomorrow i have to do my test i did 1rst time and i lose but i will get it tomorrow :-)

I failed the test last Sep, but the second time I managed to get through with the help of uktestonline I tried the free resources first, but when I subscribed to a paid service I was a bit more serious and could follow a systematic learning. I am thankful to those who have done great work on internet to provide materials for this test. Hopefully I don't have to go through these books again.

Hi,I took the test but sad to say that i failed because some of the question is not the one i remember from the book i is a very big pressure to the people who wish to have a british passport but i woud say that we have to go off in this country because they always thinking on how to take advantage to a all people who need to be here.i can say that most of british people doesn't know all about the question they given to the test.i am right or not? in USA canada any country except the uk you can get passport as long as you stay the time limit for you to apply a passport,but here they giving a lot of s*** to us before we get a british passport. i am not happy about this....

Bailey Wheeler

I am doing a project on Savannah,Georgia and how the British (Oglethorpe) founded it.I was wondering what launguage(s) the British spoke? I searched all 10 pages, but I couldn't find any
information. I need to have an awnser by December

Frankly it's bull. Thats like studying for a bloody exam but only worse. Dates like 1801 and 1961. Questions about the Queen, the pope and when women won the right to gain their own money instead of it going straight to their husbands...bull. I really thought they would be focusing on present day stuff but the majority of the test is History. Even shit like what is "PRIME MINISTER" in welsh. What do I need to know that for when I speak English with absolutely no interest in welsh or spanish for that matter. Where did Valentines origanate from. Now tell me, I'm all for educating ones self but this is taking the piece. Like one said, it's just a scheme for making money!!!

Hi all,

I just passed my test. I read all the comments before my test and a Big Thanks to Stephanie for giving the information of the website, which has free sample questions for each chapter and all the chapters if you don't have the book. It was very helpful.

I also found another site with lots of free practice tests.
Good Luck and All the Best.

Hmm. I'm sure I'd fail too. I happen to know the one about 18-y-olds getting the vote for the first time in 1969 - but only because I was born in 1951 and there was a General Election shortly after my eighteenth birthday!


I've got my test tomorrow and while putting the finishing touches on my studying, I decided to have a look through some blogs to see other people's experiences. I'm surprised, frankly. Before I started studying, I felt angry too that I'd have to go through a "humiliating" test like this, having a decent (Uni) level education, a house, a car and generally doing ok for myself. But really, the fact is, you don't get anything for free in this life and if you think of it, we all want Settlement or Naturalisation so we can partake of some pretty juicy benefits, e.g. permission to stay in a country not originally ours, easier travel, lower mortgage rates etc. Also, if natural-born Brits don't know this stuff, isn't this a chance for us to get ahead of the game? If you know more about what's going on around you, you can make better choices (voting, investing, whatever). And lastly, my tip for studying is to buy the book and record the important facts and listen to it in the car, work, gym, subliminally in my sleep. So good luck and get passing!

I passed. Sorry I haven't been back in a while. Good luck you all.

Life in the UK Test

How I thought of writing this !
(This is a link to a blog article about what to do if you fail the test. I have changed it to a TinyURL because it was too long to fit the page and was broken- Editor)

after having spent only 5 minutes to pass the exam...

I think this test is waste of time and money . Why not talk about the current political and enomic issues than things that took place half a century ago

Wow this really sucks. The Canadian Citizenship system is so much better. They even send you the test booklet with the answers at least 6 months before the test.

Hi, I passed the test today. I practised the questions on the net from a website

I found it very useful. Have a go. It costs 10 pounds and you can practice for one month at any time.

Good luck to all who are taking test.

Perhaps using appropriate resources for preparation is called for in this occasion.

Good luck !

I've been looking through this test booklet and I find it hard to believe that anybody could justify some of the ridiculous questions contained within it.Some of them are of absolutely no relevance to life in this country and indeed some of them are trick questions designed specifically to catch the unwary out.
I regard myself as of above average intelligence (mensa tested at 149 IQ] and I couldn't pass this test first time.Some of the answers are actually wrong or out of date.
It's obvious that some jobsworth beaureaucrats have conspired to create this test in such a manner as to catch as many people out as possible in the name of political correctness.
The immigration problems within this country do not stem from people who cannot answer these ridiculous questions but from the people who come here with a hidden agenda,for example the Eastern Europeans who come here freely now and rip off our welfare system by claiming tax credits etc for their families who still reside in their homeland and various other scans that they seem to be very adept at. They are bleeding our country dry and giving the descent hard working immigrants with the correct attitude and morals to live here a bad reputation.
This government should be ashamed of itself putting descent hard working people through this stress.It is nothing but a scam and a farce and a terrible way of making money out of vulnerable people and typical of this so called "labour" government.
I am married to a Filipino girl almost my own age so I have not married some young girl out of vanity but for the right reasons and cannot believe what we have gone through and the way we have been treated by the authorities especially in Manila. I am practically ashamed to call myself British after seeing the way this government acts like some rip off third world african state when it comes to charging for things like visa's etc.How can they possibly justify the exhorbitant fees charged? Sorry I am forgetting Gordon and his cronies need to maintain the John Lewis list at all costs "the poor souls have it really hard".
Your's ashamedly British,

this test is not fear at all and hasnt got any bnifet just wasting time and your money. makes you sick. but uk goverment suport this test.
life test in uk best way to make money from poor people cause they just want to live in this country. when you cant pass exam they sad your english leve is not good and you have to pick up english course and spend lots of money which is not worth. this test aginst human right and demoucrcy even british pepole cant pass this test . finally i repeat life test in uk is against HUMAN RIGHT

test is reasonably easy, i found it rather amusing when i printed out 10 tests and let my British collegues to fill them in. it was an online version so i got hold of the answers afterwards. when me and my friends did the test i was surprised to find that i was more successful at it than my British born friends.

some of the questons take a mick and are made purely to make fun of people, they aren't there to test our knowldge or literacy in English. How funny would it be to make all the CHAVS take the Britishnes test who didnt finish school, have countless ASBOS have no respect whatsoever for our laws and mutual concern, produce no input but cause trouble out on the streets always disturbing the elderly residents all across the UK and live of the Benefits??? Claiming more and more of taxpayers money for their neglected children because the parents can't be "bothered" to earn honest money. i could sit here and write pages and pages crticising the test but what use is it...

and the government says the internationals need the test?

foreigners are here doing all the dirtiest lowest paid jobs that no BRIT wants to do, and what do we do we complain that they are taking our jobs away. would u clean toilets for £2.20 an hour? didn't fink so. anw im annoyed so im guna go.

this test is just wasting time and your money

watssssssssssssssssss that its just wastng money n time these gooooorey make us fool

I realy think that the test is useful, because it helps us know that this is a new life we are beggining , I dont speak english well and havent take this test yet but i will. I speak well my mother language therfore i dont mind if i cant speak as well as English person would altho i am pretty sure some of them dont even speak english in my experince with those i met. How ever the test is ok we have to know that is settling in a nother country therefore it is their rules wich have to be obeyed. the obly thing i dont agree with is the driving thing , they make it had i have failled 10 times not because i cant drive well but because it is one person's power to decide , some how there is a lot of unjustice in it . and money making!

Im writing my test this afternoon, and even after months of trying to read useless info that not even british who have been living in Britian for centuries know the answers to! I speak fluent english, but there is a reason i never care for geography, history and especially reading auto biographies. Who cares how people in the parliament are chosen or how many chinese came in which year. What does that have to do with the price of oil???
Its a money making gimmick, atleats they should put all people living in uk, including the people that were born here go through the same, that would be fair.
And im not in this country to acquire a red passport, i have no choice as im married here.If it was upto me id rather live in africa - where its nicer.

I have recently passed the British Citizenship Test. I wanted to share my experience with you all. I looked for a lot of resources on the web to help me study for the exam and ended up purchasing a test CD with over 2500 Questions

Geoff Percival

I am 61, born and lived in Britain all my life, with a traceable ancestry back as far as the invasion by the Normans in 1066. I have qualifications in Engineering, and in Theology, and have only just retired after 30 years as a Anglican Vicar in addition to serving both locally and nationally on Major NGO's, and having a deep interest in Politics. I am widely read and keep up with current events - perhaps I also ought to mention that I was (and still am) a computer consultant.

Enough of me - I read all the test questions, and answers, and tried an online version of the test.

I failed - and to be honest I can think of only one person of my acquaintance who could pass this test "sight unseen".

The only way to pass the test is to study the books and literature, and memorise the "correct" answer for each question, then regurgitate that on demand.

This test in NOT a test of British Citizenship, but merely an exercise in regurgitating Government approved answers to Government set questions.

I think all sitting Member's of Parliament should be set this test, sight unseen without rehearsal. Those who failed should vacate their seats immediately and not be eligible for election until they could demonstrate their knowledge publicly - perhaps in Game Show format on TV. That would rapidly see a rethink of the whole ludicrous concept of "testing" in this way.

Would any MP rise to this challenge - I very much doubt it.

I am Polish and I am just reading the materials to prepare for my test. This is first time I am hearing that one of the main reasons for immigration to UK is violence against Jews in Poland. I wish the author of the book referenced his sources while writing this. I find it hard to belive. If Jews moved to UK becuase we were so violent in Poland, why were there so many of them in Poland during World War II? And secondly, what relevance does it have to a topic? Why do you want to think everybody applying for British Citizenship that Polish people are violent racists?

hi could an1 can help to findout which book can help me quick to pass my test. please friends help me...........xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

I passed the test. The questions aren't difficult, however you do need to prepare and study the right materials.

I took the test today, and I think it took me all of three minutes and I passed, of course.

I'm fairly sickened by all the people complaining here. You are wanting to live in the UK, correct? I think it is very important for anyone who wants to live in a country to understand 'how things work' in respect to politics, etc., in addition to the cultural bits. The way it is tested might leave something to be desired, but it is a good idea.

I took the test today, and I think it took me all of three minutes and I passed, of course.

I'm fairly sickened by all the people complaining here. You are wanting to live in the UK, correct? I think it is very important for anyone who wants to live in a country to understand 'how things work' in respect to politics, etc., in addition to the cultural bits. The way it is tested might leave something to be desired, but it is a good idea.

hi every test is on 22 january.can any body tell me that is this test is from the whole book or is it from 2,3,4,5,6 chapters.i m me plz

"Gosia said:
I am Polish and I am just reading the materials to prepare for my test. This is first time I am hearing that one of the main reasons for immigration to UK is violence against Jews in Poland. I wish the author of the book referenced his sources while writing this. I find it hard to belive. If Jews moved to UK becuase we were so violent in Poland, why were there so many of them in Poland during World War II? And secondly, what relevance does it have to a topic? Why do you want to think everybody applying for British Citizenship that Polish people are violent racists?"

Well... It might be a boring book, but it's very well researched...

Hmmm...seems to me that all those above who are in favour of this test have either passed it (fluked it) or not looked at it.

I don't think anyone is really against the principle of having a knowledge of your country's culture, but the problem is that this test doesn't help anyone with that. What it does is fulfill a political need to address the "problem" of perceived lack of integration by a a minority of settlers.
In other words, newspapers like The Daily Mail screamed about "immigrants living in ghettos and not learning our ways" or some such hysterical nonsense, and The Home Office was told to "come up with something quick" to quieten this potential vote-loser.
Apparently it worked (see Stephen Evans (above) :)

Of course The Border & Immigration agency must've also been rubbing its hands with glee at the prospect of making all this extra lolly at the expense of people who have NO CHOICE. And that's why, I suspect, the answers are "close" and the questions are worded ambiguously to trick even those who have a good command of English, because £34 multiplied by desperation takes the Permanent Settlement fee quite close to a nice round grand (£1,000).


After 4 years I am again on the lookout for information about Life in the UK test, since I am compelled to assist a friend prepare for his exam. ESOL and citizenship classes is not an option in this case. Glad to hear that students avoid this sort of hassle by enrolling on online distance learning courses.
All the best to everyone and my friend.


I passed this test in march this year and got my citizenship now. best place to find this book is from your local liabrary. Its not a hard test. best of luck


Here, in the United Stateswe face a serious problem, i.e. illegal immigration.The problem? People who DO apply as intended, end up waiting months & years because of the excess inflow of people who entered illegally.The rules of citizenship are basic & simple.It faces the same situation as in England.Many of the people born here have little knowledge about the history & laws of this country. In the U.S.A., the only exception made; if a person has reached senior age and has lived here for many years, then, they simplify the process. That is fair. As for people who go to another country, it is a privilege to be invited & accepted & people should consider it a privilege & not grudgingly feel compelled to learn & appreciate the invitation & acceptance policy.
Sad to say,people have become not appreciative of goodwill extended,Someone said: "If you dont like it,go back where you came from", Gratitude & attitude are Survival Skills.I listened to the news and England is becoming a very dangerous country by being noble! We are facing a similar situation here, trying to be noble, we have become victims of abusers of courtesy. Let's be nice


I am just getting ready t do this test any advice !

Hi guys,

i am going for test on coming Wednesday.Wish me luck.

Would you like to give me any advise....
I am open to any advise.....



I teach British area studies at university level in France, have a PhD in History at a British Uni, went to school in Britain, but haven't lived there for 35 years. I've taken several sample tests and failed the first by one mark (in 3 minutes). I have subsequently taken other such tests, alternately failing and passing. I hold a British passport. I totally agree with Geoff Percival. This is what I try to give my students a feel for, but I certainly don't ask them to 'parrot' back isolated bits of information.

Airborne Ally

This test is a shambles ! I am Born British 52 years old and I fail the practice tests , I have 8 SCE'S and 3 Highers ( A Levels Scottish Education) so I have had a good education, I would like to know who put this test together because I bet these people are not even British born ? The questions have nothing to do with life in UK its all rubbish . As most on this forum say its a means of stealing cash from you with the costs they charge. To be honest it suprises me why people want to come here in the first place this country has gone to ruin over the last 30 years and its going to get worse the only thing this country stands for is GREED !and no change of governement will make any differance. With nearly 8.5 million people not working in this country and the goverment cooking the figures as normal , I think you need to look at other countries that you and your family will have a better quality of life and as there are 30 odd countries above us in the ratings you have a good choice. We dont believe the hype any more this countries finished as a major power and for quality of life, Those days have long gone, My advice is forget this test and go find yourself a country where life is for the people ,and where the goverment have not lost touch with the nation and is only lining its own pockets with greed and ego

It was really hard to know at first I was going to the test but when it's time that I had no choice and I must pass for the test. I'm not living in the city, but country side so it was harder for me to study and asked someone for helping. I passed the test last year in November.

The tips to pass the test are sometimes you'll have to remember about the statistics, percentage, years etc and then keep yourself reading books whenever you can, always test yourself in the practical books as well that's really helpful. Then you will find it more relaxing for yourself in the real test and you'll pass.

Good luck everyone.

Well folks, I also took the test and after reading all this blog and the BBC article realized I was going to have to put my nose to the grindstone if I was going to pass it the first time.

The whole thing seems to be another way to make money but I guess if you want to be a British Citizen bad enough paying for the book and sitting for the exam is the cheapest part of the ILR visa process.

Anyway, there is a formula for passing the test without paying for any additional tutoring and it is to sit and read the book and then go to the and print off all of the test questions under the "What you need to know" section.

Yes, it took me about 20 study hours to comfortably answer all the questions by writing them out individually. But then hey, I'm not that bright, never had the grades for university and I barely scraped through the Canadian education system.

However, what I am bright enough to know is that I wasn't paying to sit the exam for a second time and I have no other options if I wanted to get my ILR stamp in my passport. So all the moaning in the world wasn't going to get me out of it so I took it as a personal challenge, studied until I comfortably knew ALL the answers (which wasn't that hard), sat the test, finished it in 4 minutes, scored 100% and now I'm ready for a pub quiz or to be a contestant on Jeopardy.

Exams have always freaked me out and the fear of failure has always been a mind numbing experience for me. In this case, I had no choice and I had to force myself to study for the first time in my life. So on the day of the exam after the tests were passed out I started feeling quite nervous and had to calm down. You can imagine my first wave of relief when I knew all the answers on the first page and when they all started flying into my head I almost got drunk with my own sense of excitement of knowing what they were.

So there you go. Everyone can pass this test the first time if you can read and understand english. And, if a 50 year old Canadian with no formal education can pass this test so can you. Hey, I'm on a roll anyone for a game of ice hockey?

Thw comment are interesting but imagine how it must feel to have to take the test if you are dyslexic. The only concession the test centre make is a pair of headphones.

We, our country, are idiots.

This is f-ing retarded.

I have been here for all my life - obviously - and I reckon I am pretty good at General Knowledge - but I fail these, over and over again.

My wife is having to take it, even though she comes from a native English speaking country. If she didn't speak English she could just do a course, learn pidgin English and that will be that.

What annoys me the most is silly things like, expecting someome coming to this country to know what "binge drinking" is... wtf, my wife has no idea because she doesn't go out and drink herself to death every weekend.

Maybe for her to be integrated she needs to go out and sick up on everything each weekend? Maybe a bitch fight with some other girls whilst grapping with a Police officier screaming rape at the tops of their voices.

Born British Guy

This test is an absolute joke!!! It's a pub quiz without the fun and with serious consequences if you can't pass. Has to be a better way.......

...But!!! I have lived and worked in many countries and am quite familiar with requirements for visas abroad. To pass this test and fork out a lot of cash allows you to...

Probably would have tried something similar in a couple of other countries had there been the chance!!!!

They should make it easier, fairer and given another time limit (say 2 to 3 years) before another stage. This would of course create more work for the UK Border Agency, so instead they choose to make it hard and allow people who pass to buy their way into an ILR visa.

btw. They should fail anyone who knows all the details on exactly how much benefit they get for unemployment, kids, housing etc. People who are a drain on society should not be welcomed (including British born work shy who don't know what condoms are for!!) (This is a sweeping statement and I do believe that cases should be looked at individually, but come on.... do you think they can be trusted to do that? It would take longer, require more staff and cost more. Do you think this poor country can either afford it or be bothered?

If my wife (who is fluent, self-employed, paying NIC & tax) fails this test after a couple of attempts, we will both say goodbye to this country!

I brought the book for my wife years ago that supposedly helps you to pass a test to become a subject (not citizen) ok the UK.

Quite frankly it's full of rubbish, qeustions about royalty, demographics and other boring rubbish. The average sane British person wouldn't pick this book up once let alone twice.

All I can say is don't bother coming to this crap hole of a country, god I wish my parents were from Portugal or something.

Robert anderson

Being a British citizen , born and bred, 56 years old, I now know this government is only out to make as much money as possible from any sources they can. I FAILED THE TEST , 9 out of 24 questions correct, what a sad country we live in when they ask someone who has only resided here for 2 years these STUPID BLOODY questions, come on UK get a grip on reality for god's sake, cheating , swindling , lying government ! ! !

Robert Anderson

OK all of you smart ass idiots that buy the book, because the questions are made up from the book, aren't you just all like sheep following the governments hard and fast rules, made up of greed, why did they not just have the test made up from general knowledge of the United Kingdom? Because they would not make enough extra bloody money, that is the only answer, robbing bastards !

It's a sad test that does nothing except prove you have trained for the test. I can't see how it helps in any way. I like the idea of encouraging people to be part of the country, but this test falls far short of achieving this.

Doesn't look like you are getting deported any time soon. Those were incredibly dumb questions though, how does understanding our beaureaucracy define whether you are British or not. Also the only one I got 'wrong' was because I misread the question and got an unanswered, oops.

I wonder if they have independently audited the impact of the test and seen whether it has been any use.

Sophie May Ellis

Well I have just done the practice test a few minutes ago, and must say that I have failed the first few!
I dont know if they have changed some of the questions much since some of the comments were posted in 2005, however does anyone remember a question in which asks were 'Santa Clause' lives? I mean he....(look away now if you are a believer) but he isnt even real, its a fictional character!
How will that help me to become a British citizen.
I too wonder if the majority of Brits born here would pass this test, they should do a mass public survey! I feel so tempted to print out a 1000 copies and hand them out and post it through Cameron's door!!!!
The test now costs £50.00, and the naturalisation certificate now costs £836.00!
I do not have that kind of money to be throwing away!
I have lived in the UK for almost 20 years ( i am now 24)
I asked some individuals as to why there isnt another route for people who have say at least lived in the UK for 10 years. The answer i received was a truly sad one.
Thousands of people who have lived inthe UK for decades still choose to surround themselves withing their own tight knit communities, hardly speak a work of the English language, rreceive housing, benefits coming out of their buttocks and for their 30 + 'emmediate' families.
Its a joke!
I have been in the work force since i was 16, i have graduated from university with a bachelors degree, payed taxes like a good little chump, have no convictions...and to think i might not be able to become a British citizen after all these years all because i might fail this test because i dont know what percentage of the UK population are Jewish!!!!!
And to top it all of.....the only reason Iam applying for naturalisation, is because i want to join the BRITISH armed forces!!! To fight for the country i have called 'home' for the most part of my life!
To be treated in such a way is an insult to everyone who has adapted to life in the UK, work hard, dont claim benefits all their life, pay increasingly rising taxes, are exceptional citizens...which is more than i can say for a % of 'born and bread' Brits......or Jeremy Kyle guests!
I think the government should make some of these individuals take the life in the UK test too, after all...just because someone is born in this country but do nothing to make it better or is a menace to this society should have this privelage to be a true citizen! Especially when there are many 'immigrants' who work their arse of so that us 'immigrants' can pay for a % of Brits to sit on their arse all day!!!!!!!

I've taken this exam yesterday and finished test after 6 minutes. Passed on the first attempt. How? There are plenty online tests to practice, there are people who put an effort to summarize this extremely boring book that the official website recommends. Everything can be found if you use Google.

Well done wife, proud of you, and yes i am British and failed the practice test on the site. It is pretty ridiculous the questions you have to answer and no i would only expect a small percentage of people to know some of the daft questions on what percentage of this blah blah blah. But it is nothing that a little studying can't solve. And lets face it, how much of the knowledge you learnt while at school do you actually use now, but you still had to learn it.

I have my test booked for 23rd of March...only 3 days left.I wonder if I'm lucky to pass it on my first attempt...

My wife is booked in for the 'life in the uk' test on the 7/4/2012. Her visa runs out on the 15/4/2012.
This means that she, if she fails the test, she will not have enough time to book another before her visa is expired.
That means that she will fail her indefinate leave to reamain visa and will be deported.
Can anyone tell me, if she fails, if there is a way around this.
I cannot afford to keep pay for her to come back to the UK to do this test and then send her back for her to re-apply again.

Surely this is completely against my right to a family life.
I am praying very much that the Lord gives my wife the wisdom to pass first time but its troubling me very much.

Help anyone?

As far as I know, I'm afraid that it is a general requirement for an indefinite leave to remain visa.

The Life In the UK Test, most Brits would fail, but it is not about know the answers. It is to proof you will make an effort to learn and have the intelligence to learn (in English). Else your don't get to stay. Who wants every idiot entering there country. So I get why the have it. And why I need to take it soon.

I'm glad I don't have to take a English grammar and spelling test. haha (I miss pen and paper, it had an automatic spell check called your brain)

I find it easier to write with a keyboard- when I use a pen, I start making mistakes. Good luck with the test.

Leave a comment

Type the characters you see in the picture above.