Sandra L. Hofferth

Sandra L. Hofferth
University of Maryland, College Park | UMD, UMCP, University of Maryland College Park · Department of Family Science

Ph.D

About

147
Publications
43,032
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9,598
Citations
Additional affiliations
September 2001 - present
University of Maryland, College Park
September 1994 - June 2001
University of Michigan
Position
  • Senior Researcher

Publications

Publications (147)
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents the results of a comparative analysis of the time school-age children 8-17 years in the UK and the US spent using devices such as smartphones and tablets, and their time in screen-based activities such as watching TV and playing videogames in 2014-15. The paper draws on innovative instruments measuring children’s time using tech...
Article
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Background Reducing the incidence of preterm birth is a national priority. Maternal cigarette smoking is strongly and consistently associated with preterm birth. The objective of this study was to examine prenatal exposure based on combined measures of timing (by trimester) and intensity level (the number of cigarettes smoked per day) of maternal s...
Article
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The association between physical activity and health is well documented, yet prior research has largely ignored the context of physical activity, including its specific type and the emotions experienced while engaged in that activity. This study used interview-based time diary data on 24,016 individuals who participated in the American Time Use Sur...
Article
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This article summarizes important contributions of the Child Development Supplement to the PSID (PSID-CDS) to knowledge in child development, time use, media use, and health. The PSID-CDS began in 1997, surveying 2,394 households, including 3,563 children; three waves of data on the first cohort were collected—1997, 2002–03, and 2007–08—and a new c...
Article
Background/Context Increased interest in the correlates of media devices available to children has led to research indicating that access to and use of technology are positively associated with children's academic achievement. However, the digital divide remains; not all children have access to digital technologies, and not all children can acquire...
Article
Big data, that is, data that are byproducts of our lives rather than designed for research purposes, are the newest of the information highway innovations. One of the important challenges to social and behavioral science data collection, curation, and dissemination for the foreseeable future is to link diverse forms of data in a way that is cumulat...
Article
Social science is at a pivotal moment. The advent of “big data” from the Internet, social media, and smartphones as well as newly available administrative data from electronic sources has opened the door to new understandings of people and society. That said, realizing this promise requires a vision for the future and a practical plan for reaching...
Article
Food insecurity is a substantial stressor for many households. Though an association between food insecurity and depression has been well established, most studies have been cross-sectional. Although many receive benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), its role in reducing distress associated with food insecurity is uncl...
Article
How do children of immigrants consistently outperform children of native-born U.S. parents, in spite of lower familial resources? Using the Transition to Adulthood Study of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, children of immigrant and native-born parents completing high school in 2005-13 are followed they move into the young adult years. Children o...
Article
This study examines the effects of time spent with parents and peers on generational differences in children's externalizing behavior problems in immigrant families. Using the Child Development Supplement and Time Diaries from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we found that first and second generation children exhibited fewer externalizing behavi...
Article
Father’s child care time increased substantially between 1965 and 2011. The objective of this paper is to examine whether there was continued change in father care time and whether father time was linked to family structure and partner’s employment. Data on the time use of men aged 18–64 living with children under age 18 were drawn from the America...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background: Research suggests spatial autocorrelation of birth outcomes exists at the Census tract level in Maryland, yet identification and analysis of birth outcomes hotspots has not occurred. Methods: Tract-level LBW and PTB rates were drawn from 2010-2012 aggregate vital statistics data in Maryland, and demographic data were drawn from 2008-2...
Article
Part of a wider range of investigations to produce generally acceptable standards for measuring affective well-being, time diary surveys have tested several approaches to measuring subjective well-being during diary days. As an alternative to the standard approach of asking a single question about each activity reported in time diary surveys, the 2...
Article
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http://chronicle.com/article/Big-Data-Big-Obstacles/151421/?cid=cr&utm_source=cr&utm_medium=en
Article
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With increases in nonmarital fertility, the sequencing of transitions in early adulthood has become even more complex. Once the primary transition out of the parental home, marriage was first replaced by nonfamily living and cohabitation; more recently, many young adults have become parents before entering a coresidential union. Studies of leaving...
Article
We thank Hutcheon et al. for commenting on our article.(1) We are in agreement regarding the potential pitfalls of "collider stratification bias,"(2) which is conditioning analyses on a variable that is the common effect of multiple causes (e.g., in the case of our article, conditioning on gestational age when assessing the association between gest...
Article
Maternal depression is an important public health issue for women, their families, and their employers. Previous studies have examined the impact of leave duration on maternal depression, but none have studied the association between maternal depression and the pace of return to paid work. We examine herein the relationship between maternal depress...
Article
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This study used a latent difference score growth model to investigate how changes in family structure (biological father and stepfather residence) and maternal employment are associated with American children's externalizing problem behaviours (EPB) from ages 4–10 and whether these associations vary by children's level of self-regulation. For all 4...
Article
Full-text available
Background Maternal depression is an important public health issue for women, their families, and their employers. Previous studies have examined the impact of leave duration on maternal depression, but none have studied the association between maternal depression and the pace of return to paid work. We examine herein the relationship between mater...
Article
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Objectives: We examined the association of prepregnancy body mass index (BMI) and gestational weight gain (GWG) with risk of death during infancy using the Institute of Medicine's (IOM's) Pregnancy Weight Gain Guidelines. Methods: We obtained maternal and infant data for 2004-2008 from 159,244 women with a singleton, full-term, live birth in the...
Conference Paper
More than 28,000 U.S. babies die before their first birthday each year. Programmatic and Policy focus on prematurity and birth weight stem largely from their known relationship to infant mortality and morbidity. A large body of literature exists linking poor gestational weight gain to prematurity and low birth weight, but few studies have examined...
Article
Full-text available
OBJECTIVE: We address the extent to which parenting practices of fathers and mothers are associated with their sons' parenting behaviors as young adults and whether adolescent behavior explains this association. DESIGN: Data come from 409 young men interviewed in the 2006 Young Adult study of the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. RESULTS:...
Article
Adolescents' time spent messaging, exploring websites, and studying on the computer increased between 2003 and 2008. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics Child Development Supplement, this study examines how such changes have influenced individual achievement and behavior from childhood to adolescence. Greater communications and Inter...
Article
This study examined the association between cell phone use, including minutes spent talking and number of text messages sent, and 2 measures of children's reading proficiency—tests of word decoding and reading comprehension—in the United States. Data were drawn from the Child Development Supplement to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, a nationall...
Conference Paper
The association of violence with the physical health of children under five years of age in Colombia is studied. The association of harsh parental discipline and intimate partner violence with child health is explored. Secondary data from the Colombian Demographic and Health Survey 2005 and the Colombian National Census 2005 were analyzed. A total...
Conference Paper
BACKGROUND: Adolescent pregnancy is strongly associated with poorer health behaviors and outcomes as compared with older mothers. Family social support may play an important role in improving these behaviors and outcomes for adolescents. This study examined maternal age, social support, and the health behaviors and outcomes of prenatal care, sexual...
Conference Paper
Background Most research on infant mortality has focused on the contribution of maternal characteristics and behaviors but not those of fathers. Father involvement may be more variable for unmarried parents but little is known about how it affects infant mortality. Methods A sample of infants of unmarried mothers (N=33,969) was selected from the...
Article
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This study examines whether levels of father engagement (e.g., verbal stimulation, caregiving, and physical play) vary by race/ethnicity using a model that controls for fathers' human capital, mental health, and family relationships. It also tests whether the models work similarly across race/ethnic groups. Its sample of N=5,089 infants and their f...
Article
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Nonresidential father investment of time and money has been shown to ameliorate the negative consequences of family dissolution on children's behavior and achievement; however, no research has shown whether this investment also has positive effects on child health. Using data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Survey, Kindergarten cohort, this r...
Article
Abstract Conventional wisdom says that social capital is more common among families in rural communities than urban communities. Using data from the 1988 wave of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, we compare the prevalence, type, and extent of social exchanges in these places. Results indicate that families living in rural areas are more likely to...
Article
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With the passage of welfare reform, support for low-income parents to not only obtain, but maintain work has become imperative. The role of child care subsidies in supporting parents' job tenure has received little attention in the literature. This article examines the association between receiving a child care subsidy and experiencing a child care...
Article
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The purpose of this study was to determine the relative importance of inadequate gestational weight gain as a cause of infant mortality. Birth and infant death certificate data were obtained from a random sample of 100,000 records from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) 2002 Birth Cohort Linked Birth/Infant Death Data File. Descriptiv...
Article
This study examined the association between paternal and maternal employment changes and changes in the frequency of fathers praising, showing affection, disciplining, and reading to children. Data were drawn from the Young Adult supplement to the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, 1979, in particular, young adults (18-29) who were living with...
Article
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This study provides a national picture of the time American 6- to 12-year-olds spent playing video games, using the computer, and watching TV at home in 1997 and 2003, and the association of early use with their achievement and behavior as adolescents. Girls benefited from computer use more than boys, and Black children benefited more than White ch...
Article
Full-text available
With the rise in out-of-wedlock childbearing and divorce in the last quarter of the twentieth century, an increasing proportion of children have been exposed to a variety of new family forms. Little research has focused on the consequences of childhood family structure for men's transition to fatherhood or on the family processes that account for t...
Article
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This paper examined how the onset and timing of the transition to fatherhood affects the type and quality of young men's relationships with partners and parents. Data are drawn from the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth - Young Adult Survey and included young men (ages 18-31 years old in 2006) who varied on residential status with their ch...
Article
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This study examined how child support, frequency of contact with children, and the relationship between nonresidential parents influenced preteens' reports of the involvement of fathers and mothers in their life. Data are from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) that has followed the children of NLSY mothers from birth into thei...
Conference Paper
Infant mortality is a strong indicator of a nation's health, and, as such, is a primary area of public health concern. This study examines the age of the mother in relation to infant mortality using a nationally representative sample from the linked birth/infant death data set available through the National Center for Health Statistics. Younger mot...
Article
OBJECTIVES: To determine the prevalence and nature of occupational injuries among children working in the streets of four major cities in Latin America, as well as to identify factors that predict these work-related injuries. METHODS: This cross-sectional study interviewed 584 children from 5-17 years of age working on the streets of Bogotá, Colomb...
Article
Full-text available
To determine the prevalence and nature of occupational injuries among children working in the streets of four major cities in Latin America, as well as to identify factors that predict these work-related injuries. This cross-sectional study interviewed 584 children from 5-17 years of age working on the streets of Bogotá, Colombia; Lima, Peru; Quito...
Article
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Over the six-year period between 1997 and 2003 broad social changes occurred in the United States: welfare rules changed, the nation's school policies were overhauled, America was attacked by terrorists, and American values shifted in a conservative direction. Changes in children's time were consistent with these trends. Discretionary time declined...
Article
Exploring what buying means to children and their parents, Pugh discusses why parents participate in the commercialization of childhood even as they decry it.
Article
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This article examines the determinants of men's early parental roles, distinguishing factors that affect being a father versus being childless, and factors that affect being a resident versus a nonresident father, in the context of having a partner or not. We also consider whether these patterns have changed between 1985 and 2004. The data come fro...
Article
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Street children can be found worldwide, but their prevalence is higher in developing countries such as Colombia. The present study tests the hypothesis that there are three different populations of children in the streets of Colombian cities. 1. Homeless children, 2. Displaced children, and 3. Working children. Using data from the study Trabajo inf...
Conference Paper
Although children are working in streets throughout the world, child labor is most prevalent in the developing world, including Latin America. Currently, little is known about the prevalence and nature of child street labor injuries, and about factors associated with these injuries. This study investigated the occupational injuries of Latin America...
Article
Full-text available
This study hypothesized that father involvement is influenced by mothers' level of involvement as well as by marital conflict, mothers' work hours, and fathers' status as biological or step father. The analysis also tested hypotheses about mother involvement as a potential mediator of the effects of marital conflict and maternal work hours on fathe...
Article
This study compares levels of physical activity of 9–14-year-old children from a self-reported time diary with those measured using an accelerometer. Children (N = 92) wore an accelerometer for one weekend day and completed a 24-hour time diary for that day. The time children spent in moderate to vigorous physical activity from time diaries was mod...
Article
This research examines the relationship between disabilities in families and returns to welfare. Past studies of welfare recidivism have long theorized that disabilities played a central role in returns to welfare among former recipients, but lacked data to test the hypothesis. Hypothesis tests support the theory that both child and maternal disabi...
Article
This paper examines the hypothesis that parents exaggerate their reading with children aged 3 to 5 when asked typical single-item questions and that the extent of exaggeration is greater for better-educated parents. It examines differences in parental reporting of reading to children that may result from differences in response bias. It examines wh...
Article
This research links residence with biological and nonbiological married and unmarried parents to the cognitive achievement and behavioral problems of children aged 3-12, controlling for factors that make such families different. The data were drawn from the 1997 Child Development Supplement to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. Achievement differe...
Article
Using discrete time event history analyses of data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID), we examine the association between state-level welfare waiver policies implemented before the 1996 welfare reform legislation and the risk of a nonmarital subsequent birth. Our study makes a unique contribution to the existing literature by using a na...
Article
This article first provides an overview of the part that secondary data analysis plays in the field of family studies in the early 21st century. It addresses changes over time in the use of existing omnibus data sets and discusses their advantages and disadvantages. The second part of the article focuses on the elements that make a study a “family”...
Article
Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, this paper evaluates the role of the economy and cash assistance policies implemented by states in the early to mid-1990s in maintaining long-term exits from AFDC. The probability of returning to AFDC in the 1990s was similar to that in the 1980s; about half returned to cash assistance within 2 ye...
Article
This article provides corrected estimates of the weekly time that 3- to 12-year-old children spent either directly engaged with their parents or with their parents accessible to them in 1997, replicating the figures presented in the original 2001 Demography article. The data come from the 1997 Child Development Supplement to the Panel Study of Inco...
Article
Sixteen percent of children 6-11 years of age were classified as overweight in 1999-2002, four times the percentage in 1965. Although poverty has traditionally been associated with underweight as a result of poor diet, researchers have recently pointed to a paradox in the U.S., which is that low income and obesity can coexist in the same population...
Chapter
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This paper focuses on children's time in leisure activities. We use time diary data from the 1997 Child Development Supplement (CDS) of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) to examine the amount of weekly time that children 6-12 years of age spend in various leisure activities—playing, studying, computer usage, watching television, art, hobbie...
Article
This article examines parental values among midwestern middle-class families and the role of children's after-school activities in transmitting these values to the younger generation as parents themselves balance work and family life. Sociological research suggests that American parents favor characteristics of independence, autonomy, and self-reli...
Article
The education literature contains many studies of what happens in schools and classrooms, but no documentation of what actually happens to children during an entire school day in a nationally-representative sample of students in the US. This study presents data collected from a nationally-representative sample of teachers of first through fifth gra...
Article
Little is known about the determinants of out-of-school childcare arrangements of school-age children. Using data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation, this study compares out-of-school childcare arrangements of children in single-mother and two-parent working families and examines the factors influencing their childcare decisions. F...
Article
The stepfather relationship provides a source of potential conflict in remarriage families, because the mother and partner may have different interests in the well-being of children from a prior union. Using three different theoretical perspectives—biology, sociology, and selection—this paper examines the engagement, availability, participation, an...
Article
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Although new mothers are more likely than ever to be in the labour force, the time around childbirth is a dynamic one, with women quitting work altogether or changing jobs to accommodate the demands of their infants. The passage of Family and Medical Leave legislation during the 1980s and early 1990s may have altered incentives for employment among...
Article
This article examines the behavior and achievement of children infemale-headed families that were on welfare, that left welfare, and that were not on welfare in the3 years preceding the study. Data come from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics Child Development Supplement, a nationally representative sample of children under age 13 collected in 1997...
Article
This paper evaluates the association between welfare policies implemented by states in the early to mid-1990s and the rate at which female household heads with children exit AFDC for work or for non-work reasons. The results show that waiver policies requiring work, such as the work requirement and the elimination of exemptions for mothers of very...
Article
Welfare reform has been widely accepted as a success, with the media highlighting stories of employed ex-recipients. But the reality is more complex. Many women lose their jobs; many others stay poor even while working; a booming economy might really deserve the credit. What works and what does not?
Article
Compared with children of older women, children of women who had their first birth during their teens have long been believed to be at higher risk for a host of poor health, social and economic outcomes. Recent studies have failed to confirm this belief, but none have taken into account whether children's outcomes or the effects of early childbeari...
Article
The purpose of this paper is to examine changes between 1981 and 1997 in how a representative sample of American children spends their time on a weekly basis, focusing on overall differences in time use. We also examine how the time of specific children varies depending on the age and gender of the child, presence of and employment status of parent...
Article
Full-text available
In recent studies, the effects of teenage childbearing on the schooling of young women have been smaller than those in earlier research. The discrepancy has been attributed to the use in the later studies of controls for unmeasured differences between young women who start childbearing early and those who do not, but could instead reflect changes i...
Article
In this paper we examine changes in the time American children spent with their parents between 1981 and 1997, and the contribution to these changes made by shifting patterns of female labor force participation, family structure, and parental education. We decompose changes into the parts attributable to changes in demographic characteristics and t...
Article
Full-text available
The Trivers–Willard hypothesis (TWH) predicts that parents will bias their sex ratio toward sons when in good condition and toward daughters when in poor condition. Many human studies have tested the related hypothesis that parents' bias allocation of resources to existing sons and daughters according to the same principle. The present study used t...
Article
Full-text available
The Trivers–Willard hypothesis (TWH) predicts that parents will bias their sex ratio toward sons when in good condition and toward daughters when in poor condition. Many human studies have tested the related hypothesis that parents' bias allocation of resources to existing sons and daughters according to the same principle. The present study used t...
Conference Paper
In this paper we examine changes in the time American children spent with their parents between 1981 and 1997, and the contribution to these changes made by shifting patterns of female labor force participation, family structure, and parental education. We decompose changes into the parts attributable to changes in demographic characteristics and t...
Article
The purpose of this article is to examine how American children under age 13 spend their time, sources of variation in time use, and associations with achievement and behavior. Data come from the 1997 Child Development Supplement to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. The results suggest that parents' characteristics and decisions regarding marriag...
Article
Within a weighted, nationally representative sample of 2902 children, differences in electronic media use by age and sex were examined. The data collected were part of the University of Michigan's Child Development Supplement (CDS) to the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID), and included two 24-h time-use diaries, one from a weekday and one from...
Article
This paper uses the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to examine children's involvement with their fathers in intact families as measured through time spent together. Our findings suggest that although mothers still shoulder the lion's share of the parenting, fathers' involvement relative to that of mothers appears to be on the increase. A “new father...
Article
What students do after school depends on where they go, their gender and family characteristics, and with whom they spend time. Most students go straight home, play or watch TV, and are unsupervised, but not alone. Schools equalize learning opportunities for poorer students. Time at home affects recreational reading opportunities. (Contains 10 refe...