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Citizenship Test and Citizenship in Nation MB

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I wonder if we may seriously want to consider adding or modifying requirements for Citizenship in the Nation to include actually pass the Citizenship Test for those trying to become citizens; pass at or above the same standard an immigrant needs?    Review this:  as leaders and mentors in general, we should have concerns.  Just the way I see it.  https://woodrow.org/news/national-survey-finds-just-1-in-3-americans-would-pass-citizenship-test/?fbclid=IwAR0xsWFiD5opdYNBsi8mVkJTc_hogDjCVQFZhBMCs1Zr-XI_MeiqBvFKLOQ

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There is a lot of US History on the Citizenship test.  I am not sure that is the aim of Citizenship in the Nation. I would be interested in the non-history questions. 

 

I also wonder about the methodology of this survey as there doesn't seem to be any information on how the questions were selected.  The actual test randomly selects 10 questions from a bank of 100.  For example, the actual test only asks you to name 3 of the original 13 colonies.  There is also is a significant difference between someone who studies for that test and one who doesn't.  I wonder what the pass rate would be if you allowed people to review the 100 questions for only 1 hr then asked them the same questions.  

 

If you are interested, here is the current list of 100 questions the test comes from - https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Office of Citizenship/Citizenship Resource Center Site/Publications/100q.pdf

The questions do not change without notice though the answers might (who is president for example). 

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While I like your idea I doubt it would happen. The MB is dumbed down for a 12 year old to pass. Most high school students sleep through it. I think most high school students that I know would have no problem with passing the cit test. But that is a higher than average group. 

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4 hours ago, MattR said:

While I like your idea I doubt it would happen. The MB is dumbed down for a 12 year old to pass. Most high school students sleep through it. I think most high school students that I know would have no problem with passing the cit test. But that is a higher than average group. 

Don't know about the US Citizenship test, but when I had a group of 5 HS aged Scouts who had Civics already and a 5th grade homeschooled Webelos, NONE of the HS students could talk to me about the various components of the Cit Nat MB, except their favorite monument in DC, which we did the day before. The 5th grader on the other the other hand, did know the answers and could talk about them.

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Son #1 [sometime between 4th and 6th grade while we were walking to see fireworks]: Why did you make us read the whole Declaration of Independence before we could have dessert?

Me: Well, it is Independence Day.

Son #1: But we read this stuff in school.

Me: So, did you read it in school this year?

Son #1: No.

Me: I like when you answer your own question.

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Probably have a better change to getting a First Aid requirement added explaining how to treat injuries contracted by doing the remaining requirement. 😉

The first citizenship mb called CIvics.  It was a mb until around 1951.  It had two requirements related to a "citizenship test". 

1. State the principal citizenship requirements of a voter

2. Know the principal features of the naturalization laws of the US

the Cit in nation mb used to have a requirement to obtain a birth certificate or other legal evidence of your citizenship or if foreign born, learn what a person must do to gain US citizenship.

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Wonder how many of us would fail it. Likewise, how many of us would fail a written driver's test if we had to take it today.

When you're about to take one of these tests, that's when you are studying the material and have the ability to pass it. The goal is to retain some of the information, not all of it, and to just have a good general understanding of the subject.

I really don't believe it's any indicator of current civic aptitude if a lot of people couldn't pass the test. It's a very specific test, with a lot of information that people past school age really aren't being regularly exposed to.

So if the question is if we should modify the MB to cover the citizenship test material because the country seems to not do well with the test other than at the time people are actually taking the test, then my opinion would be "no". There may be a good reason to include the material in the MB, but this "1 in 3" survey isn't a good reason, if you ask me.

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Send your suggestion to MB task force email is  merit.badge@scouting.org

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