PDA

View Full Version : Life in the UK -- The Test



aruna
03-11-2011, 05:42 PM
Well folks, this year I'm taking the plunge and applying for British Citizenship. They've changed the rules considerably in the last 10 years since I've been here; back then you only paid about 200, not 780 as now -- and you didn't have to take the Life in the UK Test.

Right now I'm practicing. It's not a hard test. Some of the questions are baby light, like when does Father Christmas come down the chimney? (honestly!)

But I've never had a good head for numbers, and having to learn by heart all kinds of useless informetion like this is driving me nuts:


What percentage of the population in England is estimated to regularly attend church?
Between 8% and 10%
Between 8% and 11%
Between 8% and 12%Now, tell me you Brits, do you know the answer offhand? And what difference does it really make, whether it's between 8% and 10%, or 12%? Does that 1% make you a better Brit?

Anyway, I've got the book and I'm swotting. And practicing. You can try it out here. (http://www.hiren.info/life-in-the-uk-test/1) I've failed on the practice tests a couple of times, and all because I couldn't remember the exact numbers. Bummer! Curious to know how much the average Brit knows offhand.

ANd in about 6 months time, I reckon, I'll be one of y'all.

Mr Flibble
03-11-2011, 05:55 PM
As much as 8%? Hmm, depends on what you call regular. 'Weddings, christenings and funerals'? Once a year at Christmas? Or more often?

I'm just popping off to see if I fail at being a Brit :D

JimmyB27
03-11-2011, 06:04 PM
20/24, I'm British enough - even if I did guess a few...

I'd fail the religion one though. And I don't really understand the purpose of it. My honest answer is 'who cares?'.

seun
03-11-2011, 06:04 PM
It's probably the 10% one although it's phrased pretty vaguely. As IRU said, what's regular?

We had the book of this at work recently and went through a few of the questions. Based on how poorly we did, we're all being deported for not being British enough.

ETA: 19 for me. Who knew the Welsh only accounted for 5%? Not me, obviously

Torgo
03-11-2011, 06:08 PM
Now, tell me you Brits, do you know the answer offhand? And what difference does it really make, whether it's between 8% and 10%, or 12%? Does that 1% make you a better Brit?

Anyway, I've got the book and I'm swotting. And practicing. You can try it out here. (http://www.hiren.info/life-in-the-uk-test/1) I've failed on the practice tests a couple of times, and all because I couldn't remember the exact numbers. Bummer! Curious to know how much the average Brit knows offhand.

Welcome to the club! No, I have no idea what the correct answer is there and I bet you that 99% of British people would be just guessing.

What this is, is some civil servant, or more likely a committee of civil servants, desperately trying to come up with some questions for a test which doesn't really have any clear purpose or philosophy behind it apart from the need to have some sort of test that requires memorisation.

At some point someone piped up in the committee room and expressed the concern that there ought to be some sort of question about religion because religion is jolly important and there will be a stink if it isn't represented on the test. But it had to be really neutral, so they went for something like this.

There are a bunch of questions there that are just statistical trivia that require rote learning. What percentage of the population lives in Wales - 5, 6, 7 or 11%? God knows. I got 87%, but I was just guessing for a few of them.

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:10 PM
I keep getting 22 out of 24. And I've finally learnt that the Northern Ireland Good Friday Agreement was signed in 1998 and not 1997 or 1996.
I guess if I just keep at it again and again I'll get them all right one day. sigh. I'm too old for this. Brain too full.

JimmyB27
03-11-2011, 06:13 PM
I keep getting 22 out of 24. And I've finally learnt that the Northern Ireland Good Friday Agreement was signed in 1998 and not 1997 or 1996.
I guess if I just keep at it again and again I'll get them all right one day. sigh. I'm too old for this. Brain too full.
The one I did said you need 18/24 to pass. Or is anything less than 100% not good enough for Aruna? ;)

Mr Flibble
03-11-2011, 06:13 PM
I scraped through.

Some of the questions though...




What are the two characteristics of civil servants?
Friendliness and efficiency
Long holidays and quick service
Political neutrality and professionalism
Political correctness and slow but careful service



Kinda depends on your point of view really.



Many people remark on the great variety in the British landscape

What hell kind of question is that?


Nowadays, children in the UK do not play outside the home as much as they did in the past, This is because
They dislike active sports
There is Home Entertainment

Neither of those, IMO.

Also the grammar and some spelling was atrocious.

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:14 PM
I see the point of the test for people who come from wildly different cultures; I guess they should know for instance (if they have kids) when compulsory schooling begins and ends and what they need for a driving test. Everyday things that people like you and me would know offhand. But there's so much crap in there...

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:17 PM
The one I did said you need 18/24 to pass. Or is anything less than 100% not good enough for Aruna? ;)

:) I want to get 100% consistently for a couple of tries, just to ensure that when I do take it in a couple of weeks, I pass the first time! It costs $36 a try, plus train fare to Brighton and a waste of time. I've failed a coulple of times, so I need to be sure I pass every single time.

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:23 PM
Here's one I got wrong:

National days are not celebrated in Britain in the same way as they are in a number of other countries
It's the same
Yes
No it's very wrongTry and figure that one out. What's the difference between It's the same and yes, and if you say it's very wrong, are you saying... oh I give up.
The answer is Yes.

Torgo
03-11-2011, 06:24 PM
It costs $36 a try

Ahhh.... Suddenly it starts to make more sense.

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:35 PM
I meant 36, nnot $$$, of course. And I finally got 100%. But it was a test I'd taken already, so the right answers were fresh in my mind.

seun
03-11-2011, 06:43 PM
Let's just deport everyone who looks a bit funny.

Of course, East Anglia would then become a very lonely place.

aruna
03-11-2011, 06:44 PM
Anyone know the answer to this one?


What is an L plate?
It's a tray for children's drinks and plates
It's a sign for women who are having a party and getting married the next day
A sign put on a car or motorcycle if you are learning to drive
It's a bridge that is used in British dental surgery

*rolls eyes*

seun
03-11-2011, 06:46 PM
It's definitely the second one. It must be worn with angel wings, those furry ear things, and no tights if the temperature is below 5c.

Silent Rob
03-11-2011, 06:49 PM
Let's just deport everyone who looks a bit funny.

Of course, East Anglia would then become a very lonely place.

I s'pose we could make an allowance for people who have webbing between their fingers.

Anyway, have fun, aruna! Judging by the slight air of cynicism pervading this thread, I'd say you're already just as British as the rest of us!

Btw, does the test have a question on chavs? Like 'What proportion of the British population is human, and what proportion is charva?'

That would be useful to know.

Chris P
03-11-2011, 06:52 PM
I might try that test later. I'm looking for a job in England, but they've recently made it literally impossible for Americans (well, any non-commonwealth, non-EU national) to get a work permit without sponsorship--Tier 1 visas from overseas have been axed. I had an interview in Ipswich last month, but the job was offered to someone else. It's been very frustrating but I'm not giving up.

Silent Rob
03-11-2011, 06:55 PM
Keep at it, Chris. Good luck.

BunnyMaz
03-11-2011, 06:55 PM
Man, some of those questions are just bizarre and completely arbitrary. Who cares where we sent people for construction work after WWII? Surely there are far more important things we should quiz incoming people on.

Like their ability to understand complex queuing systems.
Or their relationship with tea.
Or a requirement that they be awful at cricket.

mirandashell
03-11-2011, 07:07 PM
I only got 19... and I guessed half of the questions! Problem is, my ancestry is so mixed, depending on how far back you go, where would they deport me to?

You're all right, a lot of the questions are ridiculous. Good luck Aruna!

crunchyblanket
03-11-2011, 07:24 PM
Best of luck! I was born and raised in England and I know I'd fail the citizenship test. I really don't understand how knowing the church-going population of the UK is at all relevant to your becoming a citizen, but hey. As long as you like a nice cup of tea it's all good.

Chris P
03-11-2011, 07:32 PM
The "% of regular church goers" questions might be based on the idea it is important to understand the culture of the country you are hoping to enter. I'd be interested in seeing how I'd score on a US citizenship test. I think of myself as pretty well read in US history and politics, so I might be surprised at how little I know.

And how selfish of me: Good luck Aruna!

Torgo
03-11-2011, 07:37 PM
The "% of regular church goers" questions might be based on the idea it is important to understand the culture of the country you are hoping to enter. I'd be interested in seeing how I'd score on a US citizenship test. I think of myself as pretty well read in US history and politics, so I might be surprised at how little I know.


Yeah, but the possible answers are so close together that you can't guess it based on your knowledge of the country - you have to have learned the answer.

pdblake
03-11-2011, 07:46 PM
20/24, I'm British enough - even if I did guess a few...

I'd fail the religion one though. And I don't really understand the purpose of it. My honest answer is 'who cares?'.

22/24 here but I'll be blowed if I know how some of them relate to being British. A lot of them, like driving laws, apply to holidaymakers too.

Most are so simple I thought I was entering a GMTV competition:Shrug:

As for the OP question. I have no idea, but I would reckon the lower figure.

ETA: I remember seeing the very first swearing in of people who had passed this test on the news. They were all in a room, swearing some kind of allegience, guided by a group of officals all sat at a table with the Union Flag hanging down the front........upside down (one of my particular pet hates).

Priene
03-11-2011, 07:47 PM
I couldn't get the answer to this one:

What proportion of British males entering pubs on a Saturday night have scabbed-over faces?

a) 7%, and the Coalition is dedicated to removing the blight of drinking and violence from Britain's streets.
b) 99%, and the other one landed on his back.
c) None. They're all big softies.
d) Just Jimmy27, cause he's well-hard.

Chris P
03-11-2011, 07:48 PM
Yeah, but the possible answers are so close together that you can't guess it based on your knowledge of the country - you have to have learned the answer.

True that; increments of 1%? Come on! I understand the idea, but the execution is poor.

pdblake
03-11-2011, 08:02 PM
I just failed with a lot of questions about the EU and the UN. Don't see the relevance myself.

Mr Flibble
03-11-2011, 08:12 PM
I couldn't get the answer to this one:

What proportion of British males entering pubs on a Saturday night have scabbed-over faces?

a) 7%, and the Coalition is dedicated to removing the blight of drinking and violence from Britain's streets.
b) 99%, and the other one landed on his back.
c) None. They're all big softies.
d) Just Jimmy27, cause he's well-hard.

Clearly d, I'd say. Only Jimmy could take out that many ninjas single-handed.

BigWords
03-11-2011, 08:15 PM
The appalling nature of the test could probably be explained by the notion that the test was written up by a PC-conscious quango, desperate not to offend anyone... Or farmed out to a foreign country where the compiler of the test may be unaware of what goes on in the UK.

Either way, it is another pointless and aggravating waste of time and money for everyone involved.

You have to love our civil servants...

JimmyB27
03-11-2011, 08:50 PM
I couldn't get the answer to this one:

What proportion of British males entering pubs on a Saturday night have scabbed-over faces?

a) 7%, and the Coalition is dedicated to removing the blight of drinking and violence from Britain's streets.
b) 99%, and the other one landed on his back.
c) None. They're all big softies.
d) Just Jimmy27, cause he's well-hard.
Who now?

Priene
03-11-2011, 09:05 PM
They should have stuff like

A Rotherham lad is giving lip to a Barnsley lad and is well out of order. Meanwhile a Rawtenstall lad by the Trivia Machine is eyeing up the Barnsley lad's girlfriend and a Londoner is looking dead cocky near the toilets. Who should the Barnsley lad plant one on first?

a) No-one, because Britain is a peaceful nation whose regions respect each other.
b) The Rotherham lad, because local hatreds take priority.
c) The Rawtenstall lad, because Yorks-Lancs rivalry wins out over everything.
d) The Cockney, because London is gash.

jilly61
03-11-2011, 09:14 PM
20/24 (83%) here. Guess that means I can stay though I don't see the point of many of the questions. Good luck with them, Aruna.

aruna
03-11-2011, 09:48 PM
I couldn't get the answer to this one:

What proportion of British males entering pubs on a Saturday night have scabbed-over faces?

a) 7%, and the Coalition is dedicated to removing the blight of drinking and violence from Britain's streets.
b) 99%, and the other one landed on his back.
c) None. They're all big softies.
d) Just Jimmy27, cause he's well-hard.

ooh, ooh, ooh, I know that one, it's d!

Well I've been memorizing the book for the last 2 hours and committing certain vital stats to memory, such as 0.3 milliom Bangladeshi in the UK making them 0.5 of the population, as opposed to Other Asian who are only 0.4 of the population, and 0.2 in number.
I also now know that people play tricks on each other on April 1st and that you might get a card form a secret admirer on Valentine's Day.

aruna
03-11-2011, 09:51 PM
A very useful question might also be:

What footwear should you wear when walking into a typical Town Centre, but spefically Eastbourne, on a Sunday morning?

Answer: Wellington Boots, because of all the spalts of vomit on the pavement from Sat. night bingers.

aruna
03-11-2011, 09:52 PM
Thanks for all the good wishes. I'm going to try and take the test ASAP and just keep cramming the answers till then, and then forget everything again.

bettielee
03-12-2011, 12:00 AM
Good luck, Aruna!

*continues to sit quietly in the corner, trying to listen to all the Brits and not give away her Anglophilic tendencies*

waylander
03-12-2011, 01:19 AM
OK so I passed, but some of the questions were definitely in the WTF?! zone and have nothing to do with living here

Shakesbear
03-12-2011, 02:43 AM
Also the grammar and some spelling was atrocious.

YES!! Some of the questions are straight out of a Goon Show script!

22 out of 24. Hmph.


Good luck Aruna! I have my grandfathers little bit of paper - he became a British Citizen in 1901. He joined the Army and fought somewhere or other to get it quickly. Silly though some of the questions are I think it is a far more civilized way of getting Citizenship.

dpaterso
03-12-2011, 03:38 AM
Dumbest set of questions I could ever imagine.

Good luck with it!

-Derek

aruna
03-12-2011, 12:47 PM
Well, I've taken all 55 tests and got 100% twice and am no longer failing. But I consistently forget the answers to questions regarding percentages of West Indians/Sihks/Bangladeshis etc or how many of them -- the numbers are all so alike it's hard to keep tham apart. And I was always terrible at dates that were before my lifetime, except ofcourse really big ones like world wars and so on. But What Year was the Irish Parliament formed??? I might learn it by heart one moment and as soon as I get a question regarding what year was the Scottish Parliament formed I get mixed up. Or, by how much has the UK population grown since 1971? Because, to me WHAT DOES IT MATTER????
I think questions should be ones you can actually figure out yourself, not ones you have to learn by rote and mean nothing.

Here are some of the more ridiciulous questions:

The growth of UK birth rate rose slightly in ______
2003
2004
2005
2006


During Christmas Holidays month houses are decorated with special Christmas garlands, and sometimes a wreath of holly on the front door
True
False


Father Christmas is a grumpy old man
Yes that's correct
Yes he gets grumpy some times
No he's a cheerful old man



How many Ugandan Asians did the UK admit in the 1970's?
26,000
28,000
30,000



In 2001 what was the percentage of Pakistani descent?
1.1%
1.2%
1.3%


The growth of the Australia is 13%
True
False


In ______ century Britain, families were usually large
17th
18th
19th


The thing is, though this is not the official test (that's why there are so many grammatical and spellling mistakes) , those questions are pretty much the kind you can expect. There's an example of the official test. Unfortunately, they only have that one example so it's not much use.

aruna
03-12-2011, 12:49 PM
Good luck Aruna! I have my grandfathers little bit of paper - he became a British Citizen in 1901. He joined the Army and fought somewhere or other to get it quickly. Silly though some of the questions are I think it is a far more civilized way of getting Citizenship.


I was actually born British. We all had British passports until Independence in 1966.

Shakesbear
03-12-2011, 12:57 PM
I was actually born British. We all had British passports until Independence in 1966.


That is harsh!

aruna
03-12-2011, 01:20 PM
Oh well. And then I volunarily gave up Guyanese citizenship to become German. And now I close the circle. I'm hoping eventually to have all three citizenships...

JimmyB27
03-12-2011, 02:52 PM
I'm hoping eventually to have all three citizenships...
Greedy.

aruna
03-12-2011, 03:19 PM
:) there's a reason for everything!
I really want British and Guyanese. I can have double citizenship German/British, but if I apply for Guyana as well Germany might make me give up theirs I don't care much.
I want Guyana back because I'm rediscovering my love for my homeland. And a few years ago Guyana wanted to award me their annual prize for Literature but couldn't because I wasn't Guyanese.

And my publishers wanted to submit a couple of my books for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize but couldn't because of my nationality.

Apart from that, I feel more Guyanese and British than German.
The third nationality I'd really like is Indian... but no hope of that.

aruna
05-20-2011, 11:22 PM
I passed!!!!!!!

The questions were reasonable and I knew most of them (nothing about Santa Claus though!); I know of one I got wrong (who opens parliament? I clicked the Speaker; seems it's the Queen). A couple I wasn't sure but made educated guesses.
They were generous with the time: 45 minutes for 24 questions. I was the first to finish, in 5 minutes; 40 minutes early. I went back and checked them all but was happy with my answers.

One downside: I got a parking ticket. I went back twice to top up -- it took AGES to get all the candidates registered, and parking is so expensive in Brighton. An hour to get registered, 5 minutes for the test. 70 fine; if I pay in two weeks it's 35. Plus the 60 I paid for parking. An expensive afternoon. But I got it, that's the main thing.

Now to somehow cough up 780 for the actual citizenship. I don't think that will happen very soon. I've got more serious problems right now...

mirandashell
05-20-2011, 11:38 PM
Congratulations! Bloody expensive though....

waylander
05-20-2011, 11:38 PM
Glad you're one of us now!!

aruna
05-20-2011, 11:55 PM
Glad you're one of us now!!

Not yet! That's only a pre-requisite. I still have to apply.
But getting nearer.

BunnyMaz
05-21-2011, 12:23 AM
Congrats! Ah at least that horrible test is behind you now, eh?