The Next Step —
Navigating the US Citizenship Exam

For many, taking the US citizenship exam is the logical next step after achieving permanent legal residence in the United States. Those who've decided to make the US their new home, with their spouses, want to enjoy the full benefits of naturalized US citizenship. Becoming a US citizen is yet another process that requires research and preparation.

The Benefits of Citizenship

Not everybody is clear on exactly why they might want to become a naturalized US citizen. After all, if you have permanent legal status as a resident of the US, isn't that just as good?

No one can tell you whether US citizenship is the right answer for you, but there are some benefits to becoming a citizen, including . . .

  • The right to vote

  • The right to hold office

  • The right to federal, city, and state jobs

  • Protection from deportation

  • Access to financial aid, grants, and scholarships

  • Access to social benefits

  • Ability to aid family members and children in obtaining residence or citizenship

  • Ability to travel freely

The Responsibilities of US Citizenship

Of course, with benefits come responsibilities, too. As a US citizen you will be required to . . .

  • Defend the US Constitution and laws

  • Renounce allegiance to foreign nations (your place of birth)

  • Take an Oath of Allegiance (swear allegiance) to the US

  • Serve the country as required (i.e., in armed or public service)

These responsibilities are few, but should not be taken lightly, and you should consider them seriously before becoming a US citizen.

Learn How to Get US Citizenship

The process of obtaining US citizenship is not unlike that of obtaining a green card for permanent residence in the US. There are certainly differences, though, and testing to become a US citizen is more difficult than the process of petitioning and interviewing for a visa. You will need to . . .

  • Familiarize yourself with the process of naturalization

  • Determine your eligibility to become naturalized

  • Locate resources to help with the application and testing process

  • Find tutorials, study materials, and mock-tests for the US citizenship test

  • Prepare for the naturalization interview and oath-taking

As with the process of obtaining a green card by marriage, there are very good resources online; several of the best are right here. You can learn about all these aspects of naturalization and prepare for the US citizenship exam in the pages on this website.

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