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Adolescent depression and educational attainment: results using sibling fixed effects

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  • Jason M. Fletcher

    (School of Public Health, Division of Health Policy and Administration, Yale University, New Haven, CT, USA)

Abstract

This paper contributes to the literature on the relationship between adolescent depression and educational attainment in several ways. First, while cross-sectional data are normally used, this paper uses longitudinal data in order to defend against the potential of reverse causality. Second, this is the first paper in the literature to control for sibling-fixed effects in examining the relationship between adolescent depressive symptoms and human capital accumulation. Importantly, this eliminates omitted factors such as family and neighborhood characteristics common to siblings that affect both depressive symptoms and educational attainments (e.g. neighborhood crime, and family resources). Third, this paper examines the effects of both an indicator and scale of depressive symptoms and finds important associations with these depressive symptoms and human capital accumulation. Though the results cannot be given a causal interpretation, the findings show a negative relationship between depressive symptoms and years of schooling. The relationship appears to be driven primarily through increasing the chances of dropping out but may have small impacts on the likelihood of college attendance (conditional on high school graduation). In particular, preferred estimates suggest that a standard deviation increase in depressive symptoms is associated with a 25-30% increase in the likelihood of dropping out. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Jason M. Fletcher, 2010. "Adolescent depression and educational attainment: results using sibling fixed effects," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(7), pages 855-871.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:hlthec:v:19:y:2010:i:7:p:855-871
    DOI: 10.1002/hec.1526
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/hec.1526
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Stephen V. Cameron & James J. Heckman, 1998. "Life Cycle Schooling and Dynamic Selection Bias: Models and Evidence for Five Cohorts of American Males," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(2), pages 262-333, April.
    8. Nikolay Nenovsky & S. Statev, 2006. "Introduction," Post-Print halshs-00260898, HAL.
    9. Robert Haveman & Barbara Wolfe, 1995. "The Determinants of Children's Attainments: A Review of Methods and Findings," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1829-1878, December.
    10. Fletcher, Jason & Wolfe, Barbara, 2008. "Child mental health and human capital accumulation: The case of ADHD revisited," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 794-800, May.
    11. Jason M. Fletcher, 2008. "Adolescent depression: diagnosis, treatment, and educational attainment," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(11), pages 1215-1235.
    12. Behrman, Jere R & Pollak, Robert A & Taubman, Paul, 1986. "Do Parents Favor Boys?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 27(1), pages 33-54, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jason Fletcher, 2012. "The Effects of First Occupation on Long Term Health Status: Evidence from the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study," Journal of Labor Research, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 49-75, March.
    2. Susan Averett & Sarah Estelle, 2014. "Will daughters walk mom’s talk? The effects of maternal communication about sex on the sexual behavior of female adolescents," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(4), pages 613-639, December.
    3. Daniel Gladwell & Gurleen Popli & Aki Tsuchiya, 2015. "A Dynamic Analysis of Skill Formation and NEET status," Working Papers 2015016, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
    4. Johnston, David W. & Schurer, Stefanie & Shields, Michael A., 2011. "Evidence on the Long Shadow of Poor Mental Health across Three Generations," IZA Discussion Papers 6014, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Katrina Walsemann & Lisa Lindley & Danielle Gentile & Shehan Welihindha, 2014. "Educational Attainment by Life Course Sexual Attraction: Prevalence and Correlates in a Nationally Representative Sample of Young Adults," Population Research and Policy Review, Springer;Southern Demographic Association (SDA), vol. 33(4), pages 579-602, August.
    6. Wang, Kurt & Sabia, Joseph J. & Cesur, Resul, 2016. "Sleepwalking through School: New Evidence on Sleep and Academic Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 9829, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    7. D. Mark Anderson & Resul Cesur & Erdal Tekin, 2015. "Youth Depression And Future Criminal Behavior," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 53(1), pages 294-317, January.
    8. Sarah Baird & Jacobus de Hoop & Berk Özler, 2013. "Income Shocks and Adolescent Mental Health," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 48(2), pages 370-403.
    9. Fletcher, Jason M. & Lehrer, Steven F., 2011. "Genetic lotteries within families," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(4), pages 647-659, July.
    10. Lizhong Peng & Chad D. Meyerhoefer & Samuel H. Zuvekas, 2016. "The Short‐Term Effect of Depressive Symptoms on Labor Market Outcomes," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(10), pages 1223-1238, October.
    11. Johnston, David W. & Schurer, Stefanie & Shields, Michael A., 2013. "Exploring the intergenerational persistence of mental health: Evidence from three generations," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 1077-1089.
    12. repec:bla:coecpo:v:35:y:2017:i:2:p:331-344 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Maclean, Johanna Catherine, 2013. "The health effects of leaving school in a bad economy," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(5), pages 951-964.
    14. Cornaglia, Francesca & Crivellaro, Elena & McNally, Sandra, 2015. "Mental health and education decisions," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 1-12.
    15. Cesur, Resul & Sabia, Joseph J. & Tekin, Erdal, 2013. "The psychological costs of war: Military combat and mental health," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 51-65.
    16. Rees, Daniel I. & Sabia, Joseph J., 2014. "The kid's speech: The effect of stuttering on human capital acquisition," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 76-88.
    17. Sabia, Joseph J. & Rees, Daniel I., 2011. "Individual heterogeneity and reverse causality in the relationship between migraine headache and educational attainment," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 913-923, October.

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