The age 17 survey of the MCS (2018)

The Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) is renowned for the evidence it provides on the experience of growing up in the United Kingdom in the 21st century. MCS will next survey the cohort members in 2018 when they are aged 17. This period of transition to adulthood marks a pivotal stage in their development, as the paths of cohort members will diverge in a way that will greatly influence their future well-being.

Previously, schooling will have been the main activity common to the majority of cohort members. However, by age 17, cohort members will have taken important decisions in relation to schooling, further education, training, work, and living at home. Capturing these transitions well will be critical, alongside the contemporary factors underlying them.

To this end, building up a picture of daily life will be important, including factors such as:

  • relationships with parents
  • family and peers
  •  risky behaviours
  • social media engagement
  • effort on activities such as education/school

Additional factors affecting decisions at this age include attitudes and preferences, such as preferences for education, attitudes to risk, willingness to trade off resources at different points in time, and expectations about future life events. Measuring social and emotional development, mental health and cognitive development and using well-validated instruments, will also remain a critical component of the survey.

Reflecting this, the Age 17 scientific consultation contains three broad themes:

  1. Activities and daily life
  2. Socio-emotional development
  3. Cognitive development

Thank you to everyone who has given their input into the questionnaire content. Please note that the consultation is now closed.

Please contact Kate Smith if you need any more information.

Contact us

If you have any questions about the MCS7 consultation, please contact Kate Smith at