The CILS B1 Citizenship: The exam components and the grammar topics
The CILS Uno B1 for Citizenship is a test that all those who wish to apply for Italian citizenship through marriage or residence ought to pass.
In this post, you will thoroughly learn about
- The exam components of the Cils Citizenship exam (B1, intermediate level).
- The intermediate grammar topics that you should familiar with to pass the exam.
The components of the CILS Citizenship Exam
The listening comprehension tasks (prova 1 and prova 2) comprise three short audio files and last 30 minutes. The audio consists of three texts read by native speakers (one text for prova 1 and two short texts for prova 2). The tasks are wrapped up with a multiple-choice questionnaire.
Each audio file is played twice.
An example of the listening comprehension prompt:
- Ascolta i testi, poi leggi le informazioni. Scegli le informazioni presenti nei testi.
Reading comprehension and syntax
In the first part of this task (prova 1, the reading comprehension) you will be asked to read one short text (350–450 words long). The text can be presented in the shape of an email, an article, a blog post, or a list of items that discuss general topics tailored to the intermediate level. The text is paired with one exercise in which you will have to choose which pieces of information are presented in the text and which ones are not.
In the second part of this task (prova 2, syntax) you’ll be presented with a text and you’ll have to fill in the gaps in the text. You’ll be provided with some options to choose from for each blank. (three for each gap).
This task lasts 40 minutes.
The writing task for the Cils Cittadinanza comprises two short writing prompts and lasts 40 minutes. You’ll have to choose just one prompt to complete. Usually, there are two types of writing prompts:
- writing an email to seek information.
- Describe a personal event or preference.
The text should be around 80–120 words long.
This task lasts 40 minutes.
There are two short tasks for the speaking part of the CILS cittadinanza. The first part concerns a brief presentation of yourself.
The second part, which is the core of the speaking part, will involve a conversation with the examiner. The topics to be discussed usually touch on your personal events or preferences. The candidate is expected to express his or her opinions, show agreement or disagreement, and comment on the examiner’s questions and observations. You’ll be able to choose one from four different topics presented in a list.
The speaking portion lasts about 4–6 minutes.
Your presentation will be recorded.
Examples of speaking prompts
- Nel tuo tempo libero ti piace leggere un libro o navigare in internet? Perché (Do you like reading a book or surfing the internet in your free time? Why?)
- Ti piace la città dove vivi? Che cosa vorresti fare per migliorare la vita nella città dove vivi? Do you like the city where you live? What would you like to do to improve life in the city where you live?
You can find more speaking prompts to prepare for your oral exam here:
The entire exam will last 2.05 hours, with a 15-minute break in between the reading comprehension and writing production sections.
How long do you need to wait to get the results of the exam?
Your exam will be recorded and sent to the Università per Stranieri di Siena in Italy. The university will need a minimum of 90 days to correct your exam. You should expect your results to come back at any time within 90 days of your test. And another 40-60 days to get the certificate.
After passing the exam and receiving your certificate, you can submit it to your local Italian consulate or embassy to get your Italian citizenship.
Grammar topics for the CILS Citizenship (B1 level)
- Definite articles
- Indefinite articles
- Comparative and superlative adjectives
- Direct object pronouns
- Indirect object pronouns
- Possessive pronouns
- Indefinite pronouns: ogni, nessuno, qualche, ciascuno
- Simple and articulated prepositions
- The irregular verbs venire, dare, fare, stare, venire, bere, dire, sapere.
- Modal verbs
- Reflexive verbs
- The reflexive function of modal verbs
- The present tense
- The passato prossimo
- The imperfetto
- The imperative form
- Present conditional
- Adverbs of time, quantity, place
- How to study for the CILS Citizenship Exam: tips & tricks
- CILS for Citizenship: A List of Prompts for the Oral Production Part
Helpful textbook for your CILS B1 exam preparation
My favorite textbooks for preparing my students to the B1 citizenship level (providing they have already reached an intermediate level of the language)