ERIC Number: ED436642
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1999-Nov
Pathways to Educational Attainment and Their Effect on Early Career Development.
Scott, Marc A.; Bernhardt, Annette
A study identified different educational and working paths that workers take, asked which paid off for long-term wage growth and career development, and tested whether educational pathways helped explain more of the variability in wage outcomes. It compared long-term wage growth for two cohorts of young white men: the original cohort that entered the labor force in the late 1960s at the end of the post-World War II economic boom and the recent cohort that entered in the early 1980s after the onset of economic restructuring. Long-term wage growth between the ages 16-36 declined and became significantly more unequal for the recent cohort. The rising demand for education and skill in the new labor market apparently benefitted only those with four-year college degrees. Rising inequality in wage growth was found in all education groups. Working while enrolled and interrupting and returning to school were the dominant pathways to educational attainment. A second set of analyses focused on the recent cohort. Multiple regressions showed educational pathways had a strong effect on long-term wage growth: working while enrolled had a positive impact and interrupted schooling had a negative one. Career choices about industry and occupation mattered. Taking an academic track in high school paid off for workers who get some college credit or enter occupations requiring cognitive skill. Applied and practical fields of study offered the most long-term wage growth to college graduates. (Appendixes contain 19 references and a permanent wage estimation model.) (YLB)
Descriptors: Career Development, College Graduates, Colleges, Education Work Relationship, Educational Attainment, Educational Benefits, High Schools, Outcomes of Education, Part Time Employment, Part Time Students, Postsecondary Education, Reentry Students, Reentry Workers, Stopouts, Student Employment, Wages
National Dissemination Center for Career and Technical Education, 1900 Kenny Road, Columbus, OH 43210-1090 (order no. MDS-1296, $6).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Vocational and Adult Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center for Research in Vocational Education, Berkeley, CA.