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ERIC Number: ED523770
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Sep
Pages: 16
Abstractor: ERIC
Education and Synthetic Work-Life Earnings Estimates. American Community Survey Reports. ACS-14
Julian, Tiffany; Kominski, Robert
US Census Bureau
The relationship between education and earnings is a long-analyzed topic of study. Generally, there is a strong belief that achievement of higher levels of education is a well established path to better jobs and better earnings. This report provides one view of the economic value of educational attainment by producing an estimate of the amount of money a person might earn over the course of their working life, given their level of education. These estimates are "synthetic," that is, they are not the actual dollars people earned over the complete working life of the person (which would require us to have retrospective earnings data for the 40 years of their work-life). Instead, they are estimated using data from a one point-in-time cross-sectional survey. In this report, the Synthetic Work-life Earnings (SWE) estimates are first used to explore the basic relationship between education and earnings. The report then delves deeper into differences between race and gender groups with regard to this relationship. The authors also consider other factors that might influence earnings, such as citizenship, English-speaking ability, and geographic location. The data for this research comes from the Multiyear American Community Survey (ACS) data file for the period 2006 to 2008. (Contains 5 figures, 4 tables and 9 footnotes.)
US Census Bureau. 4600 Silver Hill Road, Washington, DC 20233. Tel: 800-923-8282; Tel: 301-763-4636; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: US Census Bureau