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Time, Love, and Cash in Couples With Children Study (TLC3) [United States], 2000-2005

Resource Type
Dataset : machine-readable text
  • England, Paula (Stanford University)
  • Edin, Kathryn (Harvard University)
Other Title
  • Version 1 (Subtitle)
Publication Date
Funding Reference
  • John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Research Network on the Family and the Economy
  • National Science Foundation
Free Keywords
birth control; child development; child rearing; child support; domestic violence; education; family background; family history; family relationships; family size; family structure; fathers; gender roles; health care costs; health status; home environment; housing; income; job history; life plans; love; marital status; mothers; occupational categories; parent child relationship; parental attitudes; pregnancy history; pregnancy; religion; schools; self concept; self esteem; sexual behavior; single mothers; social networks; welfare reform; welfare services
  • Abstract

    Time, Love, and Cash in Couples with Children (TLC3) consists of four waves of interviews with parents (married and nonmarried) who experienced a birth in the year 2000. Both mothers and fathers participated in semi-structured in-depth interviews individually and as a couple in each of the four waves. Interviewers were encouraged to probe and to be flexible with the order of the questions to foster a more conversational interaction. During the TLC3 interviews respondents were asked their views on parenthood, child-rearing responsibilities and expenditures, family structure and relationships, the amount of time spent with their child, their domestic responsibilities, and household income and expenditures. Questions also focused on the relationship between the parents. Respondents were asked how much time they spend together, what their thoughts were on the future of their relationship, and their general views on marriage, parenthood, and gender roles.
  • Methods

  • Methods

    Presence of Common Scales: none
  • Methods

    Response Rates: The TLC3 interview team was able to maintain a relatively high response rate: the lowest for mothers' individual interviews is 81 percent (second wave), and the lowest for fathers' individual interviews is 77 percent (fourth wave). The lowest couple interview response rate is 61 percent (fourth wave). Since many couples who were no longer romantically involved by later interviews declined the invitation to be interviewed together, the lower response rate relative to the individual interviews is expected. For more detailed information on response rates and data on differences between missing and retained individuals, see page 284 in: Shafer, Emily Fitzgibbons. 2007. "Data from the TLC3." pp. 277-291 in Unmarried Couples with Children, edited by Paula England and Kathryn Edin. New York: Russell Sage Foundation.
  • Table of Contents


    • DS1: Dataset
Temporal Coverage
  • 2000 / 2005
    Time period: 2000--2005
  • 2000 / 2005
    Collection date: 2000--2005
Geographic Coverage
  • Chicago
  • New York
  • Milwaukee
  • United States
Sampled Universe
All participants in the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study (FFCWS, which itself is a large national probability sample) who experienced the birth of a child during the time period from 2000-2005. Smallest Geographic Unit: none
Starting with a sample of 75 couples, participants were interviewed both individually and as couples. Over 4 waves of data collection, a total of 756 interviews were conducted. The sample is embedded in a large national probability sample: the FRAGILE FAMILIES AND CHILD WELLBEING STUDY (FFCWS) [ICPSR 0180]. Participants in TLC3 were chosen based on a stratified, random sampling scheme from three of the FFCWS cities: Chicago, New York, and Milwaukee. Nonmarital births were oversampled. TLC3 used one hospital in each of the three cities. In Chicago, the hospital served a largely poor, African American population, in New York the hospital served a mostly Hispanic clientele, and in Milwaukee the hospital catered to an economically and ethnically diverse population. In each city, FFCWS couples were only eligible to participate in the TLC3 study if they were romantically involved at the time of the birth, if the mother's household income did not exceed $75,000 (though most were much poorer), if both mother and father lived in an accessible geographic area (to be accessible to interviewers), if the father was not in jail, if the child was living with at least one of the biological parents, and if both parents spoke English. As in the FFCWS, TLC3 over-sampled unmarried couples. Married couples comprised approximately one third of the 75 couples in the TLC3 sample, and were included solely for comparison.
Collection Mode
  • face-to-face interview

    Pseudonyms were used to protect the identities of all those who participated in this study.

2016-01-29 This study is being updated for internal archiving purposes. The name of the zipped qualitative data package has been revised, however the contents of the package have not been altered.2008-09-11 Errors in the metadata have been corrected, additional information was provided by the principal investigator for RESPONSE.RATES, and clarifications were made in the SAMPLING and COLLECT.NOTES fields. Funding insitution(s): John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Research Network on the Family and the Economy. National Science Foundation.
One or more files in this study are not available for download due to special restrictions; consult the study documentation to learn more on how to obtain the data.
Alternative Identifiers
  • 22462 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR22462.v2
  • Collett, Jessica L., Vercel, Kelcie, Boykin, Olevia. Using identity processes to understand persistent inequality in parenting. Social Psychology Quarterly.78, 345-364.2015.
    • ID: 10.1177/0190272515607493 (DOI)
  • Linnenberg, Kathryn D.. 'CinderFella' and first-shift fathers: The effect of work schedule on father involvement. Sociological Focus.45, (3), 203-220.2012.
    • ID: 10.1080/00380237.2012.686092 (DOI)
  • Collett, Jessica L., Avelis, Jade. Building a life together: Reciprocal and negotiated exchange in Fragile Families. Advances in Group Processes.Bingley, UK: Emerald Group Publishing Limited. 2011.
    • ID: 10.1108/S0882-6145(2011)0000028011 (DOI)
  • Reed, Joanna Miranda. A Closer Look at Unmarried Parenthood: Relationships, Meanings, Trajectories and Gender. Dissertation, Northwestern University. 2008.
  • England, Paula, Edin, Kathryn. Unmarried Couples with Children. New York, NY: Russell Sage Foundation. 2007.
  • Hill, Heather D.. Balancing Work and Family with Less: Employment and Welfare Decisions Among Single Mothers of Young Children. Dissertation, Northwestern University. 2007.
  • Garfield, Craig F., Isacco, Anthony. Fathers and the well-child visit. Pediatrics.117, (4), e637-e645.2006.
    • ID: 10.1542/peds.2005-1612 (DOI)
  • Linnenberg, Kathryn Davies. #1 Father or Fathering 101? How Involved Fathers Are When They Live with Their Children. Dissertation, Northwestern University. 2006.
  • Reed, Joanna M.. Not crossing the 'extra line': How cohabitors with children view their unions. Journal of Marriage and Family.68, (5), 1117-1131.2006.
    • ID: 10.1111/j.1741-3737.2006.00318.x (DOI)

Update Metadata: 2016-01-29 | Issue Number: 5 | Registration Date: 2015-06-30

England, Paula; Edin, Kathryn (2008): Time, Love, and Cash in Couples With Children Study (TLC3) [United States], 2000-2005. Version 1. Version: v1. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.