IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Priceless: The Nonpecuniary Benefits of Schooling

  • Philip Oreopoulos
  • Kjell G. Salvanes

Increasing wealth provides key motivation for students to forgo earnings and struggle through exams. But, as we argue in this paper, schooling generates many experiences and affects many dimensions of skill that, in turn, affect central aspects of individuals' lives. Schooling not only affects income, but also the degree to which one enjoys work, as well as one's likelihood of being unemployed. It leads individuals to make better decisions about health, marriage, and parenting. It also improves patience, making individuals more goal-oriented and less likely to engage in risky behavior. Schooling improves trust and social interaction, and may offer substantial consumption value to some students. We discuss various mechanisms to explain how these relationships may occur independent of wealth effects and present evidence that nonpecuniary returns to schooling are at least as large as pecuniary ones. Ironically, one explanation why some early school leavers miss out on these high returns is that they lack the very same decision-making skills that more schooling would help improve.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/jep.25.1.159
Download Restriction: no

File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/jep/app/2501_oreopoulos_app.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal Journal of Economic Perspectives.

Volume (Year): 25 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (Winter)
Pages: 159-84

as
in new window

Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:25:y:2011:i:1:p:159-84
Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.25.1.159
Contact details of provider: Web page: https://www.aeaweb.org/jep/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

Order Information: Web: https://www.aeaweb.org/subscribe.html

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Jeanne Lafortune, 2013. "Making Yourself Attractive: Pre-marital Investments and the Returns to Education in the Marriage Market," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 151-78, April.
  2. Erica Field, 2009. "Educational Debt Burden and Career Choice: Evidence from a Financial Aid Experiment at NYU Law School," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(1), pages 1-21, January.
  3. Pedro Carneiro & Costas Meghir & Matthias Parey, 2010. "Maternal education, home environments and the development of children and adolescents," CeMMAP working papers CWP39/10, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  4. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1976. "Child Endowments and the Quantity and Quality of Children," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages S143-62, August.
  5. Chen, Keith & Lange, Fabian, 2008. "Education, Information, and Improved Health: Evidence from Breast Cancer Screening," IZA Discussion Papers 3548, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Laibson, David I., 1997. "Golden Eggs and Hyperbolic Discounting," Scholarly Articles 4481499, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Devin G. Pope & Jaren C. Pope, 2009. "The Impact of College Sports Success on the Quantity and Quality of Student Applications," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 750–780, January.
  8. Philip Oreopoulos, 2006. "The compelling effects of compulsory schooling: evidence from Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 39(1), pages 22-52, February.
  9. Stephen Machin & Kjell G. Salvanes & Panu Pelkonen, 2012. "Education And Mobility," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 417-450, 04.
  10. Claudia Goldin, 1993. "The Meaning of College in the Lives of American Women: The Past One-Hundred Years," Working Papers 899, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  11. Sandra Black & Paul Devereux & Kjell Salvanes, 2004. "Why the apple doesn't fall far: understanding intergenerational transmission of human capital," Working Paper Series 2004-12, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  12. Larry E. Jones & Alice Schoonbroodt & Michèle Tertilt, 2010. "Fertility Theories: Can They Explain the Negative Fertility-Income Relationship?," NBER Chapters, in: Demography and the Economy, pages 43-100 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Fletcher, Jason M. & Lehrer, Steven F., 2011. "Genetic lotteries within families," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 647-659, July.
  14. Edward P. Lazear, 1975. "Education: Consumption or Production," NBER Working Papers 0104, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Adriana Lleras-Muney, 2005. "The Relationship Between Education and Adult Mortality in the United States," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 72(1), pages 189-221.
  16. Ernst Fehr & Simon Gaechter, . "Fairness and Retaliation: The Economics of Reciprocitys," IEW - Working Papers 040, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  17. Mingliang Li, 2006. "High school completion and future youth unemployment: new evidence from High School and Beyond," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(1), pages 23-53.
  18. repec:dgr:uvatin:2008027 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Robert H. Haveman & Barbara L. Wolfe, 1984. "Schooling and Economic Well-Being: The Role of Nonmarket Effects," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 19(3), pages 377-407.
  20. Nancy Qian, 2010. "Quantity-Quality and the One Child Policy: The Only-Child Disadvantage in School Enrollment in Rural China," Working Papers id:2558, eSocialSciences.
  21. Dee, Thomas S., 2004. "Are there civic returns to education?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 1697-1720, August.
  22. Lange, Fabian & Topel, Robert, 2006. "The Social Value of Education and Human Capital," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  23. Ofer Malamud, 2009. "Discovering One's Talent: Learning from Academic Specialization," NBER Working Papers 15522, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Riddell, W. Craig & Song, Xueda, 2009. "The Causal Effects of Education on Adaptability," CLSSRN working papers clsrn_admin-2009-15, Vancouver School of Economics, revised 16 Feb 2009.
  25. Elizabeth U. Cascio & Ethan G. Lewis, 2006. "Schooling and the Armed Forces Qualifying Test: Evidence from School-Entry Laws," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 41(2).
  26. Costas Meghir & Mårten Palme, 2004. "Educational reform, ability and family background," IFS Working Papers W04/10, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  27. Nattavudh Powdthavee, . "Does Education Reduce Blood Pressure? Estimating the Biomarker Effect of Compulsory Schooling in England," Discussion Papers 09/14, Department of Economics, University of York.
  28. Becker, Gary S & Mulligan, Casey B, 1997. "The Endogenous Determination of Time Preference," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(3), pages 729-58, August.
  29. Michael, Robert T, 1973. "Education in Nonmarket Production," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(2), pages 306-27, Part I, M.
  30. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-46, July-Aug..
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:25:y:2011:i:1:p:159-84. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jane Voros)

or (Michael P. Albert)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.