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Report: Gen Z Students Plan to Vote in 2020

September 24, 2020

A significant majority of college students in Generation Z said they are registered to vote or are planning to register, according to a Barnes & Noble Education Inc. report released Wednesday. Of these students who are already or soon to be registered, 94 percent said that they intend to vote in the upcoming presidential election.

The report is the second in Barnes & Noble Education’s Generation Z election series and offered a comparison between students’ voting intentions and political beliefs in 2019 versus 2020, a press release said. The company surveyed 2,832 students in the United States during August, and 45 percent said recent events, such as the coronavirus pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement, “have inspired them to become more politically active,” the release said.

The pandemic has also impacted students’ intended method of voting and ability to vote, the report said. Sixty percent of students surveyed said they plan to vote early, by mail or by absentee ballot in 2020, compared to 27 percent in 2019. But 17 percent of students also said the pandemic has “impacted their ability to register to vote,” the report said.

The report offers insight into how students identify politically; 60 percent of respondents are Democrats, and 33 percent are Republicans. It also found that a majority of students continue to get their political information primarily from social media (67 percent) and major news networks (62 percent), which are similar to previous results.

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Greta Anderson

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