Do I need to sit the citizenship test?

Most people who apply for citizenship will need to pass the citizenship test to demonstrate that they have:

  • a basic knowledge of the English language,
  • an adequate knowledge of Australia and of the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship, and
  • an understanding of the nature of their application.

Test eligibility

To sit the test you must:

  • have lodged an application for citizenship,
  • be a permanent resident of Australia
  • satisfy the department of your identity during the process of registering for the test, and
  • allow the department to take a photograph of you, or provide one yourself.

Persons exempt from sitting the test

The following persons are not required to sit the test:

  • those who lodged their citizenship application before 1 October 2007, or
  • those aged under 18, or
  • those aged 60 and over, or
  • those who suffer from a substantial impairment or loss of hearing, speech or sight, or
  • those who can provide specialist medical evidence of a permanent or enduring physical or mental incapacity which means you are not capable of:
    • understanding the nature of your application, or
    • demonstrating a basic knowledge of the English language, or
    • demonstrating an adequate knowledge of Australia and of the responsibilities and privileges of citizenship, or
  • those who were born to a former Australian citizen, or
  • those who were born in Papua before 16 September 1975 to an Australian citizen born in Australia as currently defined, or
  • persons who are stateless and were born in Australia.

Assistance with the test

People with a disability

If you have a disability and do not fall into a category listed above, you will need to sit the test. If your disability means you are unable to read the computer screen, or operate a computer mouse, a government officer may provide assistance to you to sit the Standard Test by reading the questions and possible answers, or operating the mouse for you.

If you are not sure whether or not you need to sit the test, please contact the department for more information.
Telephone: 131 880

People with low levels of English literacy skills

The Assisted Test

It is expected that most people will have the basic English literacy skills necessary to complete the citizenship test without assistance. If, however, you require some help because of low literacy skills, a government officer at the test centre will provide assistance by reading the test questions and possible answers. You will still be required to have the understanding and knowledge to meet the requirements for citizenship.

To be eligible to sit the Assisted Test, you will need to have completed at least 400 hours of English language tuition under the Adult Migrant English Programme ( AMEP), and be assessed by the AMEP provider as not having the English language reading skills necessary to complete the test unassisted.

You will also be eligible to sit the Assisted Test if you have a cognitive impairment (whether temporary or permanent) that prevents you from sitting the Standard Test even with the assistance.

For more information on the Assisted Test, please contact the department.

Telephone: 131 880

More information on the AMEP is also available.