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Education, Cognition, Health Knowledge, and Health Behavior

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  • Naci H. Mocan
  • Duha Tore Altindag

Abstract

Using data from the NLSY97 we analyze the impact of education on health behaviors, measured by smoking and heavy drinking. Controlling for health knowledge does not influence the impact of education on health behaviors, supporting the productive efficiency hypothesis. Although cognition, as measured by test scores, appears to have an effect on the relationship between education and health behaviors, this effect disappears once the models control for family fixed effects. Similarly, the impact of education on smoking and heavy drinking is the same between those with and without a learning disability, suggesting that cognition is not likely to be a significant factor in explaining the impact of education on health behaviors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17949.

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Date of creation: Mar 2012
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Publication status: published as “Health Knowledge, Education and the Demand for Health Inputs,” European Journal of Health Economics, (2014), 15(3), pp. 265-79 . (with Naci Mocan).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17949

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  1. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," NBER Working Papers 12006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Cunha, Flavio & Heckman, James J., 2007. "The Technology of Skill Formation," IZA Discussion Papers 2550, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. M. Christopher Auld & Nirmal Sidhu, 2005. "Schooling, cognitive ability and health," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 14(10), pages 1019-1034.
  4. Grossman, Michael, 1972. "On the Concept of Health Capital and the Demand for Health," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(2), pages 223-55, March-Apr.
  5. Karsten Hansen & James J. Heckman & Kathleen J. Mullen, 2003. "The Effect of Schooling and Ability on Achievement Test Scores," NBER Working Papers 9881, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Altindag, Duha & Cannonier, Colin & Mocan, Naci, 2011. "The impact of education on health knowledge," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 792-812, October.
  7. Cutler, David M. & Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2010. "Understanding Differences in Health Behaviors by Education," Scholarly Articles 5344195, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  8. Janet Currie, 2011. "Inequality at Birth: Some Causes and Consequences," NBER Working Papers 16798, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Bruce Sacerdote, 2002. "The Nature and Nurture of Economic Outcomes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 344-348, May.
  10. Cutler, David M. & Lleras-Muney, Adriana, 2010. "Understanding differences in health behaviors by education," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 1-28, January.
  11. Michael Grossman, 2008. "The Relationship Between Health and Schooling," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 34(3), pages 281-292.
  12. Janet Currie & Enrico Moretti, 2003. "Mother'S Education And The Intergenerational Transmission Of Human Capital: Evidence From College Openings," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(4), pages 1495-1532, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Naci H. Mocan & Colin Cannonier, 2012. "Empowering Women Through Education: Evidence from Sierra Leone," NBER Working Papers 18016, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Colin Cannonier & Naci Mocan, 2012. "Empowering Women Through Education: Evidence from Sierra Leone," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1231, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.

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