Straightforward questions for citizenship test in Finland

There will be no trick questions on tests that could be given to foreigners applying for citizenship in Finland, according to the country’s immigration service. Tiina Suomeinen, the director of the Finland’s Nationality Unit, said issues relating to the lives of applicants, such as social benefits, health care and education, would be the most likely subjects of the proposed questionnaires.

“I feel that there could be questions about the structure and function of Finnish society, what Parliament does, questions of the right to vote, as well as values – such as gender equality. There would be no questions about the birth years of individual statesmen. There would be no point to that,” said Suominen.

The possible use of the tests, which have already been put into place in several other EU countries, was raised in Parliament this week by the Finnish Administration Committee. The Director General of Finland’s Immigration Service, Jorma Vuorio, says he is in favour of the method.

If the tests are implemented, Suominen suggested that successful systems already employed in other countries could be followed.

“For instance, in Britain, the questions are based on a particular book. This sounds sensible. One can be confident of passing the test if one understands the whole. It would be handiest if the test were to be based on an information package that could be found on the Internet,” he said.