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Heterogeneity in schooling rates of return

  • Henderson, Daniel J.
  • Polachek, Solomon W.
  • Wang, Le

This paper relaxes the assumption of homogeneous rates of return to schooling by employing nonparametric kernel regression. This approach allows us to examine the differences in rates of return to education both across and within groups. Similar to previous studies we find that on average blacks have higher returns to education than whites, natives have higher returns than immigrants and younger workers have higher returns than older workers. Contrary to previous studies we find that the average gap of the rate of return between white and black workers is larger than previously thought and the gap is smaller between immigrants and natives. We also uncover significant heterogeneity, the extent of which differs both across and within groups. Finally, we uncover the characteristics common amongst those with the smallest and largest returns to education.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

Volume (Year): 30 (2011)
Issue (Month): 6 ()
Pages: 1202-1214

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:30:y:2011:i:6:p:1202-1214
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

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  1. Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance John & Todd, Petra E., 2003. "Fifty Years of Mincer Earnings Regressions," IZA Discussion Papers 775, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Heckman, James J. & Lochner, Lance John & Todd, Petra E., 2008. "Earnings Functions and Rates of Return," IZA Discussion Papers 3310, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Cheng Hsiao & Qi Li & Jeff Racine, 2006. "A Consistent Model Specification Test with Mixed Discrete and Continuous Data," IEPR Working Papers 06.47, Institute of Economic Policy Research (IEPR).
  4. Colm Harmon & Vincent Hogan & Ian Walker, 2001. "Dispersion in the Economic Return to Schooling," Working Papers 200116, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  5. Paul W. Miller & Barry R. Chiswick, 1999. "Language skills and earnings among legalized aliens," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 63-89.
  6. Qi Li & Jeffrey Scott Racine, 2006. "Nonparametric Econometrics: Theory and Practice," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8355, April.
  7. Koop, Gary M & Tobias, Justin, 2004. "Learning About Heterogeneity in Returns to Schooling," Staff General Research Papers 12008, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  8. Racine, Jeff & Li, Qi, 2004. "Nonparametric estimation of regression functions with both categorical and continuous data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 119(1), pages 99-130, March.
  9. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2005. "Earnings Functions, Rates of Return and Treatment Effects: The Mincer Equation and Beyond," NBER Working Papers 11544, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Beth J. Soldo & Olivia S. Mitchell & Rania Tfaily & John F. McCabe, 2006. "Cross-Cohort Differences in Health on the Verge of Retirement," NBER Working Papers 12762, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Francisco L. Rivera-Batiz, 2007. "How Do Migrants from Latin America and the Caribbean Fare in the US Labour Market?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(9), pages 1399-1429, 09.
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