Fenaba Addo

Assistant Professor

Department of Consumer Science, University of Wisconsin- Madison

NLS user since 2005

  • Addo, F. R. (2014). Debt, cohabitation, and marriage in young adulthood. Demography, 51(5), 1677-1701.
  • Williams, K., Sassler, S., Frech, A., Addo, F., & Cooksey, E. (2011). Nonmarital childbearing, union history, and women’s health at midlife. American sociological review, 76(3), 465-486.
  • Sassler, S., Williams, K., Addo, F. R., Frech, A. M., & Cooksey, E. C. (2013). Family structure and high school graduation: how children born to unmarried mothers fare. Genus, 69(2).
  • Addo, F. R. (2012). Ethnoracial differences in early union experiences among young adult women. The Review of Black Political Economy, 39(4), 427-444.
  • Williams, K., Sassler, S., Frech, A., Addo, F., & Cooksey, E. (2013). Mothers’ Union Histories and the Mental and Physical Health of Adolescents Born to Unmarried Mothers. Journal of health and social behavior, 54(3), 278-295.
What I learned from NLS data

In my Demography article (2014), I used a sample from the NLSY97 and found that education loan debt deterred transitions from single to direct marriage for young women and men. In addition, for young adult women, education loans not only decreased marital transitions, but increased the odds of cohabitation relative to marriage.

Why I chose NLS data

The panel nature of the data is critical to answering questions related to changes over time both within and across individuals. The scope of the topics and breadth of information, in particular, family background, educational information, and relationship histories, makes it truly the best dataset for researching questions related to family change and household structure over the past 30 years.