New citizens are sworn in during the citizenship ceremony in Sydney on Australia Day. Picture: Robert Pozo/AAP
New citizens are sworn in during the citizenship ceremony in Sydney on Australia Day. Picture: Robert Pozo/AAP

Australian citizenship: The simple test thousands fail

A BACKLOG of citizenship applications waiting for approval includes thousands of would-be Aussies who had to resit the test several times to pass.

With more than 1200 new Aussies failing the citizenship test three times last year before going on to pass it, and the Home Affairs Department accused of taking too long to process applications, many have questioned whether the testing system is working.

In Federal Parliament this week, the opposition leapt on a new report from the Auditor-General that found over the past four years the number of citizenship applications stuck in the pipeline blew out by 771 per cent.

"Hundreds of thousands of Australian permanent residents living in the community who simply want to pledge their formal allegiance to Australia deserve much better than having their lives placed on hold by the black hole of a department," Tony Burke and Julian Hill said in a joint statement.

 

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Tony Burke, shadow minister for finance, in Federal Parliament this week. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAP
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and Tony Burke, shadow minister for finance, in Federal Parliament this week. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAP

The audit looked at the number of citizenship tests administered each year, with most applicants aged between 18 and 59.

It found while the number of such applicants had risen, the number of computer-based citizenship tests administered decreased by 38 per cent over the past four years, indicating the processing rate has declined.

Last year 4807 applicants failed the 20-question multiple choice test out of 85,267.

People can take the test again, but the Coalition Government has legislation stalled in the Senate that would ban applicants from taking the test for two years if they failed it three times.

Federation of Ethnic Communities' Councils of Australia acting chief executive Mohammad Al-Khafaji last month told The Courier Mail the test was not an accurate measure of a person's commitment to Australia and called for a review into whether it was working.

News.com.au has provided the practice test questions so readers can see if their own Aussie knowledge stacks up.

They can be found in the test resource book Australian Citizenship: Our Common Bond and answers are provided below.

A Home Affairs spokesman said the department did not endorse or recommend citizenship test packages from any other individual or organisation that claim to help applicants pass the test.

To pass, you need to correctly answer 15 of the 20 questions, with questions chosen out of a pool of 75.

 

 

New citizens are sworn in during the citizenship ceremony in Sydney on Australia Day. Picture: Robert Pozo/AAP
New citizens are sworn in during the citizenship ceremony in Sydney on Australia Day. Picture: Robert Pozo/AAP

 

PRACTICE TEST

 

1. What do we remember on Anzac Day?

a. The landing of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps at Gallipoli, Turkey

b. The arrival of the first free settlers from Great Britain

c. The landing of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove

 

2. What are the colours of the Australian Aboriginal flag?

a. Black, red and yellow

b. Green, white and black

c. Blue, white and green

 

3. Which official symbol of Australia identifies Commonwealth property?

a. The national anthem

b. Australia's national flower

c. Commonwealth Coat of Arms

 

4. Which of these statements about Australia's system of government is correct?

a. The Queen of Australia chooses people to form the Australian parliament

b. The government is elected by the people

c. The Prime Minister chooses our members of parliament

 

5. Which of these is an example of freedom of speech?

a. People can peacefully protest against government decisions

b. Men and women are treated equally in a court of law

c. Australians are free to not follow a religion

 

6. Which of these statements about government in Australia is correct?

a. The government does not allow some religions

b. Government in Australia is secular

c. Religious laws are passed by parliament

 

7. Which of these is an example of equality in Australia?

a. Everyone follows the same religion

b. Men and women have the same rights

c. Everyone belongs to the same political party

 

8. Which of these is a responsibility of Australian citizens aged 18 years or over?

a. To attend local council meetings

b. To vote in elections

c. To have a current Australian passport

 

9. Which of these is a responsibility of Australian citizens aged 18 years or over?

a. To do local community service

b. To carry a passport at all times

c. To serve on a jury if called to do so

 

10. Which of these statements about passports is correct?

a. Australian citizens can apply for an Australian passport

b. Permanent residents can hold an Australian passport

c. Australian citizens need a passport and visa to return to Australia

 

11. Which of these statements about voting in Australian elections is correct?

a. People are free and safe to vote for any candidate

b. Voting is by a show of hands

c. People must write their name on their vote

 

12. What happened in Australia on January 1, 1901?

a. The Australian Constitution was changed by a referendum

b. The Australian Constitution came into effect

c. The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps was formed

 

13. What is the name of the legal document that sets out the rules for the government

of Australia?

a. The Australian Federation

b. The Australian Commonwealth

c. The Australian constitution

 

14. What is a referendum?

a. A vote to change the government

b. A vote to change the Australian Constitution

c. A vote to change the Prime Minister

 

15. Which arm of government has the power to interpret and apply laws?

a. Legislative

b. Executive

c. Judicial

 

16. Which of these is a role of the Governor-General?

a. The appointment of state premiers

b. The signing of Bills passed by the Australian parliament

c. The appointment of the Head of State

 

17. Which of these statements about state governments is correct?

a. All states have the same constitution

b. Each state has its own constitution

c. The states have no constitution

 

18. What is the name given to the party or coalition of parties with the second largest

number of members in the House of Representatives?

a. The Government

b. The Opposition

c. The Senate

 

19. What is the name of a proposal to make a law in parliament?

a. Royal Assent

b. Bill

c. Debate

 

20. Who maintains peace and order in Australia?

a. Public servants

b. Police

c. Lawyers

 

ANSWERS:

1a, 2a, 3c, 4b, 5a, 6b, 7b, 8b, 9c, 10a, 11a, 12b, 13c, 14b, 15c, 16b, 17b, 18b, 19b, 20b



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