Could you pass the citizenship quiz?

Test yourself while celebrating your independence

July 3, 2012 

Happy Independence Day!

Chances are, you're spending at least part of July 4 celebrating your freedom, and citizenship, enjoying a burger and a parade.

But, celebration aside, do you have what it takes to be an American citizen? Prospective Americans have to demonstrate their ability to speak and write English, as well as their knowledge of basic American history, geography, and the rights and responsibilities that come with citizenship.

During an oral citizenship exam, applicants are asked 10 civics questions, selected from a list of 100, and must answer six correctly to pass. How well would you do?

Here are 20 questions randomly chosen (and edited) from the list. Just how good of an American are you? Find out by taking this quiz. And good luck!

1. Who makes federal laws?

A. the Supreme Court

B. the president

C. Congress

D. the states

2. What is one promise you make when you become a United States citizen?

A. to never travel outside the United States

B. to give up loyalty to other countries

C. to display an American flag

D. to serve in the armed forces

3. Which of the following states borders Canada?

A. Maine

B. Rhode Island

C. South Dakota

D. Oregon

4. When must all men register for the Selective Service?

A. at any age

B. between 18 and 26

C. at age 16

D. men do not have to register

5. What does the judicial branch do?

A. resolves disputes

B. decides if a law goes against the Constitution

C. reviews laws

D. all of the above

6. Who was president during World War I?

A. Woodrow Wilson

B. Franklin Roosevelt

C. Theodore Roosevelt

D. Warren Harding

7. Which territory did the United States buy from France in 1803?

A. Quebec

B. Haiti

C. Alaska

D. the Louisiana Territory

8. When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?

A. December 7, 1787

B. July 4, 1789

C. July 4, 1776

D. March 4, 1789

9. Which ocean is found along the East Coast of the United States?

A. Arctic Ocean

B. Indian Ocean

C. Pacific Ocean

D. Atlantic Ocean

10. The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution. Name one of the writers.

A. John Adams

B. George Washington

C. James Madison

D. Thomas Jefferson

11. Which of the following is a U.S. territory?

A. Cayman Islands

B. Bermuda

C. Guam

D. Haiti

12. During the Cold War, what was the main concern of the United States?

A. the Great Depression

B. climate change

C. communism

D. slavery

13. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1800s.

A. World War II

B. Civil War

C. Korean War

D. World War I

14. The idea of self-government is in the first three words of the Constitution. What are these words?

A. Congress shall make

B. We the British

C. We the colonists

D. We the people

15. What is one thing Benjamin Franklin is famous for?

A. youngest member of the Constitutional Convention

B. third president of the United States

C. inventor of the airplane

D. U.S. diplomat

16. What is the supreme law of the land?

A. the Constitution

B. the Emancipation Proclamation

C. the Declaration of Independence

D. the Articles of Confederation

17. The House of Representatives has how many voting members?

A. 100

B. 200

C. 435

D. 441

18. What is one right or freedom provided by the First Amendment?

A. bear arms

B. vote

C. free speech

D. trial by jury

19. Name one branch of the U.S. government.

A. United Nations

B. parliament

C. state government

D. legislative

20. If the president can no longer serve, who becomes president?

A. The first lady

B. The vice president

C. The chief of staff

D. The secretary of state


1. C

2. B

3. A

4. B

5. D

6. A

7. D

8. C

9. D

10. C

11. C

12. C

13. B

14. D

15. D

16. A

17. C

18. C

19. D

20. B

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