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Nationality #73

govuk-design-system opened this issue Jan 15, 2018 · 2 comments

Nationality #73

govuk-design-system opened this issue Jan 15, 2018 · 2 comments


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@govuk-design-system govuk-design-system commented Jan 15, 2018


How to ask for someone's nationality


Services using this pattern:

Anything else:

  • Related pattern: #14 Country
  • Related pattern: #4 Autocomplete
@govuk-design-system govuk-design-system created this issue from a note in GOV.UK Design System Community Backlog (Agreed) Jan 15, 2018
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@joelanman joelanman commented Apr 5, 2018

Example from Electronic Visa Waiver


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@amyhupe amyhupe commented May 9, 2018

Research update

On 18 April 2018, I asked the Digital Service Designers mailing list for examples and user research relating to asking users for nationality. I have included the findings and examples below, as well as some suggested next steps for progressing the pattern.


  • services need to accommodate users with more than one nationality
  • some users need to be able to search for countries of nationality in their native language
  • some services ask users to provide their response in the format of nationality, some ask for a country of nationality, and some - like Register to vote - use a combination.
  • most services mentioned used an autocomplete
  • when using an autocomplete, if the field appeared right at the bottom of the viewport, users didn’t always see the autocomplete list when it appeared
  • some services direct users to the nationality on their passport to check
  • using the term country can be problematic and doesn’t cover every instance - for example Hong Kong and Taiwan: some services used region or territory instead or in addition to country, to cover all cases


Register to vote:

screen shot 2018-05-09 at 15 16 34

Tier 2 and international visa:

image001 1

image002 1

Registered traveller:

screen shot 2018-04-20 at 10 16 56 1

Electronic visa waiver:

screen shot 2018-04-20 at 10 11 52

Next steps

Based on the findings and examples shared here, I think future research needs to focus on:

  • the best way to ask users for their nationality, for example: "What is your nationality?" or "What is your country of nationality?"
  • how to support all use cases, for example: country or territory; country or region; region; location
  • how to support aliases, spelling errors and other possible variations in users' responses

Finally, it seems likely that the finished pattern will recommend using an autocomplete, which might make the work on that component #4 a dependency for publication.

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