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The Health Benefits of College Education in Urban China: Selection Bias and Heterogeneity


  • Anning Hu



China has undergone a rapid expansion in higher education since the late 1990s. Drawing on a recently collected nationwide representative data, the current study makes contributions to the understanding of the health benefits of college education in urban China. Using propensity score matching to deal with potential selection bias, the results of the current research suggest that higher education attainment can significantly promote people’s self-rated health status, with the control for a series of demographic and socio-economic characteristics. Moreover, this research also highlights the heterogonous treatment effects: those who are more likely to attend college benefit less from the health returns to higher education than those who are less likely to go to college, lending support to a negative heterogeneous treatment effect pattern. Finally, we also examine the cohort difference in the heterogeneous treatment effect and it turns out that the negative pattern mainly takes place among the cohorts born after 1981, the generations who experienced the expansion of higher education. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Suggested Citation

  • Anning Hu, 2014. "The Health Benefits of College Education in Urban China: Selection Bias and Heterogeneity," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 115(3), pages 1101-1121, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:115:y:2014:i:3:p:1101-1121
    DOI: 10.1007/s11205-013-0266-2

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    References listed on IDEAS

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