Vocational Economics Inc.
Vocational Economics Inc. staff

Education Earnings

Below is a list of articles supporting an earnings differential for varying educational levels.

Day, Jennifer Cheeseman and Eric C. Newburger.  “The Big Payoff:  Educational Attainment and Synthetic Estimates of Work-Life Earnings.”  U.S. Census Bureau Current Population Reports P23-210, July 2002. 

The authors use data from the March supplement of the Current Population Survey and study the relationship between educational attainment and earnings.  They show rising income levels with rising educational attainment and study this relationship over time and by gender and race.

Lerman, Robert I.  “Meritocracy without Rising Inequality?”  Economic Restructuring and the Job Market, No. 2 September 1997. 

As employers shift their demand for workers toward those with more skill, wage gaps are widening between those more highly educated workers and those with less education.  This is being offset with a lessening wage gap based on race and gender.   

U.S. Census Bureau.  “Table 7.  Median Income of People by Selected Characteristics:  2000, 1999, and 1998.”  Income 2000.  Census Bureau web site.

This table reports data from the Current Population Survey and lists median income by various characteristics, including gender and educational level.  The table shows rising income levels with rising educational attainment.

U.S. Census Bureau.  “Table P-26.  Education Attainment— Full-Time, Year-Round Workers 25 Years Old and Over by Mean Earnings and Sex:  1991 to 2000.”  Historical Income Tables – People.  Census Bureau web site. 

This table also reports data from the Current Population Survey and lists 10 years of average earnings for year-round, full-time workers by educational level, showing rising income levels with rising educational attainment.


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