On Oct. 1, USCIS began using digital tablets to administer the English reading and writing tests during naturalization interviews as part of the agency’s ongoing modernization efforts. Although USCIS applicants already use digital tablets to sign or verify parts of their applications, this new approach expands the use of tablets, allowing the device to be used for a greater amount of the application process. USCIS will be able to carry on in using the paper process on a case-by-case basis.
Although the eligibility requirements and the subject material of the naturalization test have not changed, applicants are now using a stylus on a digital tablet in place of a paper application. Immigration Services Officers (ISO) will carefully instruct applicants on how to use the tablets before giving the tests:
For the writing test, several lines will appear on the tablet, replicating the appearance of a piece of blank paper. The ISO will read a sentence aloud and ask the applicant to write it on the tablet.
Applicants will continue to take the civics test verbally, without the tablet.
WASHINGTON – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) made public a policy memorandum (PDF, 113 KB) (PM) effective September 11, 2018, that gives guidance to USCIS adjudicators in their discretion to not approve applications/petitions without first having to issue a Request for Evidence RFE or Notice of Intent to Deny NOID when the required supporting documents are not included or the supporting documents do not prove eligibility for the requested benefit.
This updated guidance pertains to all applications, petitions, and requests, except for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals DACA. Due to continued litigation in California and New York, this new policy memorandum doesn’t change policies and practices that apply to DACA requests.
This new policy restores the power and discretion of USCIS adjudicators to be able to deny applications, petitions without first having to issue an RFE or NOID. The policy will discourage frivolous or incomplete filings and should encourage petitioners, applicants, and requestors to submit fully documented applications/petitions.