Citizenship Test and the 'Answer Key'

A staff member here at the Library pointed me to this article in The New York Times about a revamped test immigrants must pass before they may become citizens.

The article talks about the pros and cons of both the old test and the new.? The aim, according to the story, was to get away from ?trivia? and to elicit more substantive answers.

But what is interesting, according to my colleague, is that the Library of Congress Web site is a virtual ?answer key? for the citizenship test.

For instance, the Times links to a sample test of 10 questions. Question 4 states, ?There are four amendments to the Constitution about who can vote. Describe one of them.?? A potential answer can be found here.

Question 6 says, ?The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution. Name one of the writers.?? Voila!

Or question 7: ?What territory did the United States buy from France in 1803??? Food for thought here and here.

And finally, question 8: ?Who was President during World War I??? The answer can be found here.

Of course, the examples could go on and on.

We often talk about how the purpose of the Library of Congress is to help create a better informed citizenry.? But it hadn?t really occurred to me until now that we can also help create citizens themselves.? (Thanks, Colleen!)

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