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The returns to vocational training and academic education: Evidence from Tanzania

  • Godius Kahyarara
  • Francis Teal

In this paper we ask what can account for the continuing strong preference for academic education in Africa where the level of development is so low and there are few wage jobs and which form of educational investment, the academic or vocational, is most profitable. We argue that the answers to these questions are linked through the shape of the earnings function and the importance of firm effects. High levels of academic education have far higher returns than those available either from vocational or lower levels of academic. However at lower levels the vocational return can exceed the academic.

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Paper provided by Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford in its series CSAE Working Paper Series with number 2008-07.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2008-07
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  1. Kathleen Burke & Kathleen Beegle, 2004. "Why Children Aren't Attending School: The Case of Northwestern Tanzania," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 13(2), pages 333-355, June.
  2. Psacharopoulos, George, 1994. "Returns to investment in education: A global update," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 22(9), pages 1325-1343, September.
  3. Moenjak, Thammarak & Worswick, Christopher, 2003. "Vocational education in Thailand: a study of choice and returns," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 99-107, February.
  4. Shoshana Neuman & Adrian Ziderman, 1991. "Vocational Schooling, Occupational Matching, and Labor Market Earnings in Israel," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(2), pages 256-281.
  5. Bennell, Paul, 1996. "Rates of return to education: Does the conventional pattern prevail in sub-Saharan Africa?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 183-199, January.
  6. Marcel Fafchamps & Måns Söderbom & Najy Benhassine, 2006. "Job Sorting in African Labor Markets," CSAE Working Paper Series 2006-02, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  7. Garen, John, 1984. "The Returns to Schooling: A Selectivity Bias Approach with a Continuous Choice Variable," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(5), pages 1199-1218, September.
  8. Geeta Kingdon & Justin Sandefur & Francis Teal, 2006. "Labour Market Flexibility, Wages and Incomes in Sub‐Saharan Africa in the 1990s," African Development Review, African Development Bank, vol. 18(3), pages 392-427.
  9. Måns Söderbom & Francis Teal & Anthony Wambugu & Godius Kahyarara, 2003. "The Dynamics of Returns to Education in Kenyan and Tanzanian Manufacturing," CSAE Working Paper Series 2003-17, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  10. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Introduction to "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings"," NBER Chapters, in: Schooling, Experience, and Earnings, pages 1-4 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. De Beyer, Joy, 1990. "The incidence and impact on earnings of formal training provided by enterprises in Kenya and Tanzania," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 9(4), pages 321-330, December.
  12. Tansel, Aysit, 1994. "Wage employment, earnings and returns to schooling for men and women in Turkey," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 305-320.
  13. Jacob A. Mincer, 1974. "Schooling, Experience, and Earnings," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number minc74-1, May.
  14. Duraisamy, P., 2002. "Changes in returns to education in India, 1983-94: by gender, age-cohort and location," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 609-622, December.
  15. Monazza Aslam, 2006. "Rates of Return to Education by Gender in Pakistan," Economics Series Working Papers GPRG-WPS-064, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  16. Geeta Gandhi Kingdon & Jeemol Unni, 2001. "Education and Women's Labour Market Outcomes in India," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(2), pages 173-195.
  17. Neuman, Shoshana & Ziderman, Adrian, 1991. "Vocational schooling, occupational matching, and labor market earnings in Israel," Policy Research Working Paper Series 683, The World Bank.
  18. Paul Bennell, 1996. "General versus vocational secondary education in developing countries: A review of the rates of return evidence," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(2), pages 230-247.
  19. David Card, 2000. "Estimating the Return to Schooling: Progress on Some Persistent Econometric Problems," NBER Working Papers 7769, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Soderbom, Mans & Teal, Francis & Wambugu, Anthony, 2005. "Unobserved heterogeneity and the relation between earnings and firm size: evidence from two developing countries," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 153-159, May.
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