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National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, Public Use Spouse-Partner, Parents (2015-2017)




Harris, K. M., & Hotz, J. (2021, September 22). National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, Public Use Spouse-Partner, Parents (2015-2017).


Add Health Parent Study (2015-2017) gathered social, behavioral, and health survey data in 2015-2017 on a probability sample of the Add Health parents who were originally interviewed in 1995. Data for 2,013 Wave I parents, ranging in age from 50-80 years and representing 2,244 Add Health sample members, are available. Add Health Parent Study Wave I Parents were the biological, adoptive, or stepparent of an Add Health child; not deceased or incarcerated at the time of Parents (2015-2017) sampling; and had at least one Add Health child who is also not deceased at the time of Parents (2015-2017) sampling. The Add Health Parent Study interview also gathered survey data on the current cohabiting Spouse or Partner of Wave I Parents who completed the interview. Nine hundred eighty-eight (988) current Spouse/Partner interviews are available. These data can be linked with Wave I parent data, and corresponding Add Health respondents at Waves I - V.

The Add Health Parent Study (2015-2017) interview is a comprehensive survey of Add Health parents' family relations, education, religious beliefs, physical and mental health, social support, and community involvement experiences. In particular, the study was designed to improve the understanding of the role that families play through socioeconomic channels in the health and well-being of the older, parent generation and that of their offspring. This unique data set supports the analyses of intergenerational transmissions of (dis)advantage that have not been possible to date. Add Health Parent Study data permits the examination of both short-term and long-term linkages and interactions between parents and their adult children.

For more information, please visit the Add Health Parent Study official website here.

This file is the main interview data collected from the Spouse or Partner of the Add Health Wave I Parent. The name of the file is "sp2" on official Add Health data documentation.

Data File

Cases: 498
Variables: 367
Weight Variable: None

Weight variables are on separate files. See Parents (2015-2017), Wave I Parent Weights file for weights of parent-level data (either Wave I Parent or Spouse/Partner). See Parents (2015-2017), Add Health Sample Member Weights file for the weights of Add Health child-level data.

Data Collection


Original Survey (Instrument)

National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health, Public Use Spouse/Partner, Parents (2015-2017)

Funded By

National Institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health

Collection Procedures

The Add Health Parent Study interview questions were administered on laptop computers using Blaise Survey Software. This computer assisted interviewing (CAPI) software allows for conditional routing, validity and range checks, computations, hierarchical questionnaire models, and linking to external files. CASI (computer assisted self-interviewing) was employed for a group of sensitive questions. The advanced level of the Blaise software permitted the Parents (2015-2017) interview to collect complex tables of data, such a household rosters and family rosters, and then display the tables back for the respondents to review and correct as necessary.

The majority of the interviews were conducted at the respondents' homes. Other interview locations include respondents' work locations, restaurants and coffee shops, libraries, and parent or friend residences. Telephone interviews were conducted with 224 respondents who were difficult-to-reach or geographically dispersed. On average, the interview lasted approximately 70 minutes. Respondents received a $40 for completing the interview.

Sampling Procedures

The Parent Study (PS) sample is a probability sample drawn from the Add Health Wave 1 sample. The PS target population consists of parents who satisfy the following criteria: 1) Is a biological, adoptive or step parent of an Add Health child; 2) Is not deceased or incarcerated at the time of sampling; and 3) Have at least one Add Health child who is also not deceased at the time of sampling. With the sampling unit of the survey being the Add Health parent, the parent was interviewed about their own characteristics as well as some characteristics of the bio/step/adoptive child (or children) that responded in the Add Health, Wave 1 survey. In addition, the current spouse or partner of the parent was also interviewed if he or she currently resided at the Add Health parent's address. Data on the PS sample children was collected by proxy from the Add Health parent. Thus, the PS collected data on multiple persons - the parent, the parent that was present at the Add Health interview (if different from the interview parent), the spouse or partner (if available) and the child or children of the parent that are in the Add Health sample.

Principal Investigators

Dr. Kathleen Mullan Harris, Director, Add Health; James E. Haar Distinguished Professor of Sociology; Carolina Population Center Faculty Fellow, UNC-Chapel Hill

Joseph Hotz, Ph.D., Arts and Sciences Professor of Economics at Duke University

Related Publications

To access a publications database on the Add Health website, visit here, which includes more than 5,000 publications, presentations, unpublished manuscripts, and dissertations by Add Health researchers. To obtain a copy of any item, please contact the author.

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