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Schooling, Literacy, Numeracy and Labour Market Success

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  • Barry R. Chiswick

    ()
    (University of Illinois at Chicago, USA)

  • Yew Liang Lee
  • Paul W. Miller

Abstract

The present paper uses data from the 1996 Australian Aspects of Literacy survey to examine the effects on labour market outcomes of literacy, numeracy and schooling. The survey includes a range of literacy and numeracy variables that are highly intercorrelated. A 'general to specific' approach identifies the most relevant literacy and numeracy variables. Including the others adds little explanatory power. Among males and females separately, approximately half of the total effect of schooling on labour force participation and on unemployment can be attributed to literacy and numeracy (the indirect effect) and approximately half to the direct effect of schooling. There is apparently no indirect effect of labour market experience through literacy and numeracy on participation or unemployment. The direct and total effects of experience are the same. Similarly, the direct and total effects of literacy and numeracy are reasonably similar to each other. Copyright 2003 The Economic Society of Australia.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by The Economic Society of Australia in its journal The Economic Record.

Volume (Year): 79 (2003)
Issue (Month): 245 (06)
Pages: 165-181

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Handle: RePEc:bla:ecorec:v:79:y:2003:i:245:p:165-181

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References

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  1. Miller, Paul W & Volker, Paul A, 1984. "The Screening Hypothesis: An Application of the Wiles Test," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(1), pages 121-27, January.
  2. Paul W. Miller & Leanne M. Neo, 2003. "Labour Market Flexibility and Immigrant Adjustment," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 79(246), pages 336-356, 09.
  3. Joseph G. Altonji, 1992. "The Effects of High School Curriculum on Education and Labor Market Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 4142, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Le, Anh T & Miller, Paul W, 2000. "Australia's Unemployment Problem," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 76(232), pages 74-104, March.
  5. Preston, Alison, 1997. "Where Are We Now with Human Capital Theory in Australia?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 73(220), pages 51-78, March.
  6. Weiss, Andrew, 1983. "A Sorting-cum-Learning Model of Education," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 420-42, June.
  7. Anh T. Le & Paul W. Miller, 1998. "The ABS Survey of Employment and Unemployment Patterns," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 31(3), pages 290-297.
  8. McNabb, Robert & Richardson, Sue, 1989. "Earnings, Education and Experience: Is Australia Different?," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(52), pages 57-75, June.
  9. Chiswick, Barry R. & Hurst, Michael E., 2000. "The Employment, Unemployment and Unemployment Compensation Benefits of Immigrants," IZA Discussion Papers 129, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Michael Grossman, 1972. "The Demand for Health: A Theoretical and Empirical Investigation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number gros72-1, May.
  11. Schultz, Theodore W, 1975. "The Value of the Ability to Deal with Disequilibria," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 13(3), pages 827-46, September.
  12. Barry Chiswick, 1999. "Are Immigrants Favorably Self-Selected?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 181-185, May.
  13. Lang, Kevin & Kropp, David, 1986. "Human Capital versus Sorting: The Effects of Compulsory Attendance Laws," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(3), pages 609-24, August.
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Cited by:
  1. A'Hearn, Brian & Baten, Jörg & Crayen, Dorothee, 2009. "Quantifying Quantitative Literacy: Age Heaping and the History of Human Capital," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 69(03), pages 783-808, September.
  2. Miller, Paul W. & Mulvey, Charles & Martin, Nick, 2004. "A test of the sorting model of education in Australia," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(5), pages 473-482, October.
  3. Niels-Hugo Blunch & Claus C Pörtner, 2005. "Literacy, Skills and Welfare: Effects of Participation in Adult Literacy Programs," Working Papers UWEC-2005-23-FC, University of Washington, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2009.
  4. Patrick Laplagne & Maurice Glover & Anthony Shomos, 2007. "Effects of Health and Education on Labour Force Participation," Staff Working Papers 0704, Productivity Commission, Government of Australia.

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