Original Research

Dr. Seemiller has conducted three original large-scale studies on Generation Z and collaborated on one comparative study using both quantitative and qualitative methods.

Generation Z Global Study (Launching Fall 2021)

As the Big Zs, who are the older, first half of the generation (born 1995-2001), move further into adulthood, the Little Zs at the start of the second half of the generation (born 2002-2003) are navigating their new young adult lives during an unprecedented time in history. While much has been studied about the older half of Generation Z, this younger cohort may look different.

Do today’s college-aged Gen Zers (Little Zs) have the same characteristics, outlooks, and behavioral preferences as their older Gen Z counterparts when they entered college seven years ago? Or, have recent events made an impact on how this generation sees and navigates the world? Findings from this study can be used to help schools, higher education institutions, parents, and others in better understanding how to support and leverage Generation Z’s academic success, health and wellbeing, career preparation, and social engagement, especially given that what Little Zs may need could differ from what Big Zs did when they were the same age.

Early studies about Generation Z (focused on the Big Zs) were often conducted independently by researchers in various countries regarding their specific populations. While this is useful from a national perspective, being able to truly compare data across geographic boundaries has been limited as the studies being used for comparison were often entirely discrete from each other with different methodologies, survey questions, and even timing.

This study aims to bring together researchers from around the world to garner participation in a joint research initiative, where the study is coordinated, both in using comparative survey questions (adjusted for linguistic and cultural appropriateness) as well as employing the same methodology and analysis procedures for validity. Doing so will allow for more direct comparisons between countries as researchers in all participating nations grapple with the transition of the Little Zs into adulthood.

This study is in active recruitment for institutional partners from colleges and universities around the world. If your institution is interested in participating, email

Download the Generation Z Study Overview for more information.

Gen Z Voices on Voting

The Gen Z Voices on Voting Study explores the perspectives of young adults born in the birth range of 1995 through 2001 about U.S. politics. including better understanding their possible voting behaviors, opinions of the political system and critical issues, political ideologies, and news consumption. With the upcoming 2020 election, we uncovered the perspectives of the voting-aged segment (those born 1995-2001) of those in Generation Z on politics today, including better understanding their possible voting behaviors, opinions of the political system and critical issues, political ideologies, and news consumption. To learn more about this study and access the free report, click here.

Generation Z Stories Project

The Generation Z Stories Project served as a follow-up study to the Generation Z Goes to College Study. This entirely qualitative study involved more than 2000 Generation Z college students from 50 higher education institutions in the U.S. and Canada. Participants were asked questions related to learning, motivation, concerns, future career, important issues, and how their generation can make the world a better place. Dr. Seemiller served as the Co-Pi of this study with Meghan Grace. Findings from the study are available in the book, Generation Z: A Century in the Making.

Generation Z Goes to Brazil

Did you know that loyalty is the highest self-reported characteristic of Generation Z college students in both the U.S. and Brazil? After working with a great research team in Porto Alegre, Brazil, this and other fascinating information emerged from the analysis. Stay tuned for an upcoming article on comparative findings between U.S. and Brazil data on Generation Z college students.

Generation Z Goes to College Study

The Generation Z Goes to College Study was both quantitative and qualitative and involved 1,143 participants from 15 higher education institutions in the U.S. The study aimed to uncover perspectives, styles, preferences, concerns, affiliations, beliefs, and approaches of Generation Z related to the following topics: Politics, spirituality, characteristics, motivations, diversity and social justice, communication, social media, friends/family/romance, social issues of concern, engagement and social change, leadership, and learning. Dr. Seemiller served as the Co-PI of this study with Meghan Grace. Findings from the study are integrated into Generation Z Goes to College, Generation Z Leads, as well as her publications, presentations, webinars, podcasts, blogs, and interviews. 

Custom Data Sets and External Research

In addition to incorporating original data into their publications and presentations, Dr. Seemiller and Ms. Grace have been able to work directly with organizations to obtain data sets disaggregated to the Generation Z age range. The following include a list of custom data sets.

~2014 CIRP data from the Higher Education Research Institute disaggregated to only Generation Z college students (150,171 participants)
~2017 College Senior Survey data from the Higher Education Research Institute disaggregated only to Generation Z college students (9,361 participants)
~2013-20017 cumulative data on the top five character strengths from the VIA Institute on Character disaggregated only those in Generation Z (155,215)

In order to understand themes related to Generation Z’s perspectives, styles, and behaviors, publications and presentations also include research findings from market research, national polling data, adolescent social science data, and studies conducted by other generational researchers.