ERIC Number: ED442551
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999
Reference Count: N/A
What Do Fathers Contribute to Children's Well-Being? Child Trends Research Brief.
Le Menestrel, Suzanne
As rates of divorce and nonmarital childbearing have increased in recent decades, the percentage of children and fathers who live apart from one another has also increased. Yet our knowledge of how father involvement affects children's well-being in these situations is quite limited, since most research on fathers and children has focused on intact families. This brief summarizes key findings on the relationship between father involvement and child outcomes from that larger body of research, as well as the relatively small group of studies that consider fathers who live apart from their children. Main findings are as follows: (1) children benefit from positive relationships with their fathers; (2) fathers can positively influence their children's development by assuming a significant amount of the child care tasks; (3) a father's parenting style has implications for child well-being; (4) fathers' involvement can affect children's social development, cognitive development, and academic achievement; (5) limited research has been conducted on the relationship between child outcomes and involvement of fathers who do not live with their children; (6) provision of child support is related to children's cognitive development, academic achievement, and behavior; and (7) research findings on the association between frequency of father-child contact and child outcomes are mixed. (Contains 14 endnotes.) (EV)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Chicago, IL.; Freddie Mac Foundation, McLean, VA.
Authoring Institution: Child Trends, Inc., Washington, DC.