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Explaining the Worldwide Boom in Higher Education of Women

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  • Gary S. Becker
  • William H. J. Hubbard
  • Kevin M. Murphy

Abstract

The last 40 years have witnessed a remarkable boom in higher education, particularly of women. Today in most higher-income countries and many lower-income countries, more women than men complete tertiary education. We present a model of the market for college graduates in which supply is a function of the distribution of the costs and benefits of college across individuals. We find little evidence that benefits are higher for women. It appears that differences in the total costs of college for women and men—primarily differences in the distributions of noncognitive skills—explain the overtaking of men by women in higher education.

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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/10.1086/657914
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File URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/full/10.1086/657914
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Human Capital.

Volume (Year): 4 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 203 - 241

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jhucap:doi:10.1086/657914

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Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JHC/

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References

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  1. Pierre-Andre Chiappori & Murat Iyigun & Yoram Weiss, 2006. "Investment in Schooling and the Marriage Market," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_034, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  2. Jonathan Guryan & Erik Hurst & Melissa Kearney, 2008. "Parental Education and Parental Time with Children," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(3), pages 23-46, Summer.
  3. Susan Dynarski, 2005. "Building the Stock of College-Educated Labor," NBER Working Papers 11604, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Thomas Diprete & Claudia Buchmann, 2006. "Gender-specific trends in the value of education and the emerging gender gap in college completion," Demography, Springer, vol. 43(1), pages 1-24, February.
  5. Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz & Ilyana Kuziemko, 2006. "The Homecoming of American College Women: The Reversal of the College Gender Gap," NBER Working Papers 12139, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Björn Alecke & Claudia Burgard & Timo Mitze, 2013. "The Effect of Tuition Fees on Student Enrollment and Location Choice – Interregional Migration, Border Effects and Gender Differences," Ruhr Economic Papers 0404, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  2. Pekkarinen, Tuomas, 2012. "Gender Differences in Education," IZA Discussion Papers 6390, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Xiaoyan Lei & Yuqing Hu & John J. McArdle & James P. Smith & Yaohui Zhao, 2012. "Gender Differences in Cognition among Older Adults in China," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 47(4), pages 951-971.
  4. Reijnders, Laurie S.M., 2014. "The college gender gap reversal: Insights from a life-cycle perspective," Research Report 14006-EEF, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
  5. Lei, Xiaoyan & Smith, James P. & Sun, Xiaoting & Zhao, Yaohui, 2013. "Gender Differences in Cognition in China and Reasons for Change over Time: Evidence from CHARLS," IZA Discussion Papers 7536, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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