7figuresEvery year the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases the American Time Use Survey (ATUS), which measures the amount of time people spend doing various activities, such as paid work, childcare, volunteering, and socializing.

Here are seven figures you should know from the latest report:

1. On the days they worked, employed men worked 53 minutes more than employed women. This difference partly reflects women’s greater likelihood of working part time. However, even among full-time workers, men worked longer than women–8.3 hours compared with 7.7 hours.

2. On an average day, 83 percent of women and 65 percent of men spent some time doing household activities such as housework, cooking, lawn care, or financial and other household management. On the days they did household activities, women spent an average of 2.6 hours on such activities, while men spent 2.1 hours.

3. Individuals age 75 and over averaged 1.0 hour of reading for personal interest per weekend day and 20 minutes playing games or using a computer for leisure. Conversely, individuals ages 15 to 19 read for an average of 4 minutes per weekend day and spent 52 minutes playing games or using a computer for leisure.

4. Employed adults living in households with no children under age 18 engaged in leisure activities for 4.5 hours per day, about an hour more than employed adults living with a child under age 6.

5. Men were more likely than women to participate in sports, exercise, or recreation on any given day–21 percent compared with 16 percent. On the days that they participated, men also spent more time in these activities than did women–1.9 hours compared with 1.3 hours.

6. Watching TV was the leisure activity that occupied the most time (2.8 hours per day), accounting for more than half of leisure time, on average, for those age 15 and over. Socializing, such as visiting with friends or attending or hosting social events, was the next most common leisure activity, accounting for 43 minutes per day.

7. The average person spend 8.74 hours a day sleeping (8.65 for men; 8.82 for women).

Other posts in this series:

The Shifting Religious Identity of Latinos in the U.S.

Inmate Sexual Victimization by Correctional Authorities

Tax Day Edition

Wages and Employment in America

The Christian Family

The Christian Family

Bavinck issues an evergreen challenge to God’s people: “Christians may not permit their conduct to be determined by the spirit of the age, but must focus on the requirement of God’s commandment.”


  • Honordads

    Is the data observed or self-reported? There’s no way that the average teen is spending under an hour a day on the computer. Just sayin.

    • http://Culture11.com Joe Carter

      An hour doesn’t sound like much, but according to the Census only 75% of American households have Internet in the home. So the kids who don’t have a computer (or whose parents limit their access) drag the numbers down. I suspect if you excluded them the number would be much higher.

    • Aaron

      They’re using their smartphones instead. My guess is the data distinguishes computer from phone, though there is increasingly not really any difference.