Two thirds failed new Danish citizenship test
Two thirds of the first group of foreign nationals to take a new citizenship test failed, Danish Integration Minister Inger Støjberg confirmed on Tuesday.
Published: 5 July 2016 15:15 CEST
Study harder, the integration minister said. Photo: Colourbox
The new test, which is part of Støjberg’s plan to “make it significantly harder to get Danish citizenship”, was given for the first time in June.
Just 31.2 percent of those who took the new test passed, while 68.8 percent failed.
Ever since a random sample of test takers carried out by Politiken newspaper last month revealed that most failed the test, it has come under fire for its focus on historical events and figures. A number of Danish media outlets have posted the test on their websites and even natural-born Danes had a hard time passing it, leading to a number of political calls to revamp the exam.
The new test (indfødsretsprøven) replaced an earlier and easier citizenship test (statsborgerskabsprøven) that was introduced by the previous government in 2014.
The new version focuses more on Danish history and requires 32 correct answers out of 40 (80 percent) to pass, while the previous test had a more modern focus and required 22 correct answers out of 30 (73 percent).
The new version has a number of rather obscure historical questions that have been roundly criticized. Testees are required to know such things as which year the first ‘Olsen Banden’ film premiered, what the ballet Sylfiden is about, what century the Jyske Lov is from and the life span of composer Carl Nielsen.
Other questions include identifying the number of municipalities (kommuner) in Denmark, which Danish restaurant has three Michelin stars (this one) and whether religious views need to adhere to society's rules.
Støjberg on Tuesday confirmed that 68.8 percent of those who took the test for the first time failed, but said people had simply failed to properly study for it.
“It should be hard to become a Danish citizen because it is something special. Therefore, one needs to earn it. You need to prepare yourself and take the test. On top of that you need to stay away from crime and take care of yourself [financially],” she told news agency Ritzau.
Those taking the citizenship test are provided with study materials that include the answers to the test questions. The test is given twice each year, in June and December.
A number of Danish media have posted the test questions on their websites. The test, which is obviously in Danish, can be taken at any of the following:
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