Calculate your generation, or anyone's (your kids, planned baby, parents), and find out: Gen Z, Gen X, Millennial, Baby Boomer...
Use this calculator to determine someone's social generation, the sociological generation into which a person is born based on year of birth.
You can enter either birth year or current age for the person for whom you are calculating. If you enter current age, the calculator first determines the person's birth year (approximated), and then calculates generation.
What is a social generation?
Social generations group people who are born within a specific range of years and therefore have the shared experience of events and technologies. This group will always be connected to its generation as they age and are simultaneously exposed to the same major events, such as war or recessions, and technologies, particularly during formative years.
As examples: While Gen Zers are the first generation to grow up with social media via smartphones (and TV and radio), and Baby Boomers grew up with TV (and radio), the Greatest Generation had no TV, no internet, and only about 1% of households had radio.
Some defining events impacting generations in the United States:
Lost Generation - World War I, First Red Scare, 1918 Pandemic Flu
Greatest Generation - World War II, the Great Depression.
Silent Generation - Second Red Scare, Korean War, Suburbanization via Tract Homes.
Baby Boomers - Cuban Missile Crisis, McCarthy Hearings, Watergate, Vietnam War, First Moon Landing, Postwar Birth Boom
Generation X - AIDS Epidemic, End of Cold War, Fall of Berlin Wall, First Space Shuttle, MTV
Millennials - September 11th, Great Recession, Columbine Mass Shooting, Iraq War, Internet
Generation Z - Smartphones, Social Media, Influencers, Me Too Movement, Covid 19
Generation Alpha - Remote School, Digital Natives, Artificial Intelligence
While many of these events obviously cross and impact multiple generations, they are often considered defining when they occur during a generation's formative and young adult years.
Are high schoolers the same generation?
People born within a few years of each other may not be of the same social generation. For example, if you were born in 1996 and your friend was born in 1998, even though you are only two years apart, you'd be in two distinct generations! Of course, in cases such as these, you'd each be on a generational cusp; in reality, your life experiences and perspectives would likely be closely in sync.
Are siblings in the same social generation?
As with friends, if there are a few - or several - years between siblings, this could mean children in a given family are in separate social generations.
For instance, if a father has a daughter in 1978, and then, during his second marriage a son in 1999, his children are not only of 2 distinct generations but they skip over the Millenial generation.
Note: Social generations of sibling can differ; However, all children related by the same mother and/or father, are in the same family generation.
Related Calculator: Family Generation Calculator
How long is a generation?
While the length of generations varies by a few years, and, according to Pew Research, there is no set standard for exactly how long a generation is, the trend is that social generations are getting shorter. Since Gen X, each generation is averaging 16 years, whereas for baby boomers and prior generations the length was 17 to over 20 years.
A variety of sources were used when originally developing this calculator, and when updating in 2024, including: The Pew Research Center, Works by N. Howe and W. Strauss, Encyclopedia Britannica, Wikipedia. Past/current discussion with people of the Greatest Generation through Generation Z; Living in the 20th and 21st centuries as events transpired.