NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ929934
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jun
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0037-7732
Adolescent Cognitive Skills, Attitudinal/Behavioral Traits and Career Wages
Hall, Matthew; Farkas, George
Social Forces, v89 n4 p1261-1285 Jun 2011
We use panel data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY79) to estimate the effects of cognitive skills (measured by the Armed Forces Qualification Test) and attitudinal/behavioral traits (a latent factor based on self-reported self-esteem, locus of control, educational aspirations and educational expectations) on career wage trajectories of white, black and Latino/a men and women. We find that both cognitive and attitudinal/behavioral traits affect initial wages and wage growth, above and beyond their effects on schooling and transcript-reported high school grades. The relative size of these effects, however, varies by race/ethnicity. We also show that black and Latino men, and black women have substantially flatter wage trajectories than white men and women. Using wage decomposition techniques, we find that the lower wages of these groups are partially, but not fully, accounted for by group differences in cognitive skill and attitudinal/behavioral traits. (Contains 2 figures, 4 tables, and 14 notes.)
University of North Carolina Press. 116 South Boundary Street, P.O. Box 2288, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2288. Tel: 800-848-6224; Tel: 919-966-7449; Fax: 919-962-2704; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: National Longitudinal Survey of Youth; Armed Forces Qualification Test