What is the purpose of life in the uk test?


The beginners who are unaware of the primary purpose of taking the Life in the UK test must read this blog. We will discuss everything one needs to know about the UK life test. After all, it has become a significant need of time. And mostly, applicants are tremendously ill-informed regarding the precise requirements and test-related content.

The Purpose of the Life in The UK Test 

Introduced in 2005, the Life in UK test had one purpose. And that was to help you get naturalization. After two years (2007), the test gets another purpose. What was it? To help you apply for the UK settlement. In short, the main purpose of this test was to let immigrants forward their application for either to get naturalization of British citizenship or ILR (indefinite leave to remain). One should also have professional-level skills in the English language. Or we can say the talent equivalent to ESOL 3 or above.

Three essential things that a test assess include:

1. The applicant's acquaintance with the British Life

2. The candidate's sufficient knowledge of UK politics and history

3. The capabilities and understanding regarding the English language

In 2018, the home secretary, Sajid Javid, announced his “in progress” plans to end the Life in the UK test. He intends to introduce a more rigorous British values test. Since 2005, it was redesigned twice, in 2007 and 2013. Even though the test’s purpose is to validate others’ knowledge of Life in the UK, the official handbook from the Home Office states to support the candidates in “learning easy ways of integrating into UK society along with letting you understand your role in the local community for better.”

Thus, it is not pretty clear what exactly is the purpose of the test. Is it to evaluate if the immigrant has successfully unified with UK communities? Or, is it purposed to ease their ways into UK integration?

We can sum up the purpose of Life in the UK In another way. That is: to reassure the migrants that “they” are precisely the type of migrants “UK” wants. The UK life test was projected early in the 2000s. There was a substantial ongoing public concern regarding immigrants at that time. Social cohesion in diverse communities was also a hot topic. That is why it will not be wrong to see the test as a part of a broader concept to prove that the UK government is and will always be in complete control. It demonstrates that immigrants who plan to settle or naturalize in any part of the UK are fairly conversant, well-informed, and committed to serving for betterment.

Kinds of Information Included:

Comprising 24 MCQs, questions are picked to evaluate your current knowledge. Knowledge about spending a successful life in the UK. It judges you for a conceptual understanding of British norms.

Technically, one-third of the book covers only British history. Why? Life in the UK is based on questions highlighting UK historical events. Other topics of the book and the Life in the UK test questions are chosen from versatile fields. For instance, British politics, British values, culture, places of interest, sport, and information about volunteering in local communities.

A Sneak Peek of the Official Guide/Handbook:

The book has three editions, all drafted officially by the Home Office. You have the choice to buy it or read it online.

- The 1st edition was only a handbook. It consisted of all the necessary information.

- The 2nd edition comes in two books: one handbook and one book of practice questions.

- Coming to the last revised 3rd edition, it is the most expensive. Moreover, it comes with the addition of an official study guide. It was published in March 2013.

Bonus: Despite being comprehensively written, it is now considered unfit for the Life in the UK test exam. It shows the inability to meet its primary goal. The main of delivering excessive knowledge about UK’s Life!

The UK Life Test - Costly Path to Citizenship: 

Yes, you have read it right. This test is one expensive and pretty challenging assessment. Genuinely speaking, 24 questions sound fairly unjust. Isn't it too much to evaluate one’s skills!? Besides, the test is known to contain specific factual errors, too. Adding to your surprise, it has been routinely criticized for selecting questions focused on national trivia rather than on more practical knowledge. The knowledge that can make a difference in the future. But unfortunately, this is the real one that needs to get through.

Only 45 minutes are provided to solve these randomly chosen 24 questions. You submit £50 for the Life in the UK registration. Since 2009, the overall cost of study materials has risen over whooping 60%. Every year hundreds of thousands of people take this tricky test. The most shocking part is that it comes with a tiny passing percentage. Moreover, the applicant must wait for a week for a retake.

A Certain Type of Britishness:

We are somewhat unclear about the purpose. What is more? We are also confused about “the kind of integration.” What sort of integration is provided or evaluated? Let’s dig in!

Moving in one dimension, the Life in the UK test exam emphasizes societal & cultural integration. It is done specifically in a white Anglo nation. But in another dimension, you will see questions about civilian rights. There are MCQs about voting and parliament. We agree that citizenship is essentially based on the notion of the state’s political membership. But, the test doesn’t have to be political. Instead, it must reveal the UK’s government expectation from a new citizen. The content must force having diverse yet similar cultural knowledge.

It would not be wrong to say that the handbook has prioritized Monty Python, pantomimes, roast beef, Edward Elgar, and allotments. When it should be focusing more on significant concepts such as NHS, schools, and emergency services.

Why Unfit for the Purpose?


On the one hand, the test tends to carry the excessively unfair amount of the Life in the UK test questions and content in the book regarding general knowledge of British laws. Such material holds NO importance. On the other hand, the test has eradicated the essential topics. Those topics include the NHS, educational qualifications, ways to report a crime or contact an ambulance. These were available previously.


You don’t have to learn about the number of MPs in Westminster, but oh wait! Do you have knowledge about the members of the Welsh government or Scottish Parliament? Because you must know THIS. Although applicants are asked to stay updated regarding lower courts, surprisingly, the UK Supreme Court gets no credit. Viola!

Trivial Pursuits:

You will find a lot of mistakes, or we can say, misconceptions about historical dates and personalities. That is not all! The facts and dates included in the book seem purely unimportant.

Gender Imbalance:

It might be shocking, but gender discrimination is pretty evident in the Life in UK test. For instance, the birth dates of 29 men are provided, but for women, there are only four. Most shockingly, the Queen’s birthdays are not included. No famous women personalities (artists, musicians, poets) are mentioned.

Time to Rethink!

Do you consider Life in the UK trivial? Well, it does not matter if you do or do not! Passing a test is a stepping stone to acquiring British citizenship. We felt it was the right time to have some honest discussion about the test. Truly speaking, passing the test can be a privilege.

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