A new Life in the UK test is coming up on March 25, 2013
On January 28, 2013, the Home Office has released an updated Life in the UK test handbook. This new handbook is called Life in the United Kingdom: A guide for new residents, 3rd edition. This handbook was introduced by the Labour party in 2005 and revised in 2007.
The test is required for settlement (indefinite leave to remain) in the UK or British citizenship. You’ll need to pass this test before you send in your citizenship application form.
The new test, based on the new handbook, will take effect on or after March 25, 2013, giving applicants about 8 weeks to adapt for the new test.
The new test will have the same format (24 multiple-choice questions to be answered in 45 minutes), but candidates will now be tested on every chapters of the new handbook. Until March 24, 2013, applicants are only tested on chapters 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 of the second edition of the handbook.
The new handbook focuses more on British culture and history to give citizenship applicants a better sense of life in the UK. This handbook has been created using feedback from the public, from users and from other relevant parties.
The UK government removed banal facts such as train timetables or water meters. You won’t see anymore information on basic parts of life in the UK, such as job interviews or public transport, which everybody should already know.
The handbook focuses on the values and principles of what it means to be British. It also focuses on great achievements made by the UK and on great individuals in various fields such as sport, science and culture. For example British figures such as Isaac Newton or William Shakespeare are portrayed in this new handbook. In this new handbook, citizenship applicants can find information on the UK legal system, democracy and government, as well as the responsibilities and rights of British citizenship.
The goal of the UK government is to provide citizenship applicants with a more genuine and authentic reflection of life in Great Britain.
The new handbook retains the “check that you understand” sections at the end of every sections, as well as a glossary of useful words and expressions.
As a result of all these changes, and additional chapters added to the required testable knowledge, the new test might be a little harder to study for, and maybe a little harder to pass. Future statistics will show us the impact of this new test on the pass rate.