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Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education: Accounting for Enrolment and Completion Effects

  • Nicolas Hérault

    ()

    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)

  • Rezida Zakirova

    ()

    (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne)

This paper contributes to the literature by separately analysing the signalling (or sheepskin) effects of the enrolment in and the completion of vocational education and training as well as higher education. Moreover, we investigate the persistence of these sheepskin effects over time. We take advantage of the Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth, which contains comprehensive information about completed and uncompleted courses and subsequent labour market outcomes. We find that signalling effects form a substantial part of the total return to education but that they vary by type of course. In addition, we show that both course attendance and course completion contribute to the overall signalling effects.

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Paper provided by Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne in its series Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series with number wp2011n04.

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Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iae:iaewps:wp2011n04
Contact details of provider: Postal: Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010 Australia
Phone: +61 3 8344 2100
Fax: +61 3 8344 2111
Web page: http://www.melbourneinstitute.com/
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  1. Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. & Ribar, David C., 2009. "Financial Stress, Family Conflict, and Youths' Successful Transition to Adult Roles," IZA Discussion Papers 4618, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Riley, John G, 1979. "Testing the Educational Screening Hypothesis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages S227-52, October.
  3. Arrow, Kenneth J., 1973. "Higher education as a filter," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 193-216, July.
  4. Riley, John G, 1976. "Information, Screening and Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(2), pages 254-60, May.
  5. Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1975. "The Theory of "Screening," Education, and the Distribution of Income," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 283-300, June.
  6. John Gibson, 2000. "Sheepskin effects and the returns to education in New Zealand: Do they differ by ethnic groups?," New Zealand Economic Papers, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(2), pages 201-220.
  7. Aashish Mehta & Hector Villarreal, 2008. "Why do diplomas pay? An expanded Mincerian framework applied to Mexico," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 40(24), pages 3127-3144.
  8. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1992. "Does School Quality Matter? Returns to Education and the Characteristics of Public Schools in the United States," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(1), pages 1-40, February.
  9. Layard, Richard & Psacharopoulos, George, 1974. "The Screening Hypothesis and the Returns to Education," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(5), pages 985-98, Sept./Oct.
  10. Paul Contoyannis & Andrew M. Jones & Nigel Rice, 2004. "The dynamics of health in the British Household Panel Survey," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(4), pages 473-503.
  11. James J. Heckman, 1976. "The Common Structure of Statistical Models of Truncation, Sample Selection and Limited Dependent Variables and a Simple Estimator for Such Models," NBER Chapters, in: Annals of Economic and Social Measurement, Volume 5, number 4, pages 475-492 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Spence, A Michael, 1973. "Job Market Signaling," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 87(3), pages 355-74, August.
  13. Hungerford, Thomas & Solon, Gary, 1987. "Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(1), pages 175-77, February.
  14. Park, Jin Heum, 1999. "Estimation of sheepskin effects using the old and the new measures of educational attainment in the Current Population Survey," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 237-240, February.
  15. Grubb, W. Norton, 1993. "Further tests of screening on education and observed ability," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 125-136, June.
  16. Arkes, Jeremy, 1999. "What Do Educational Credentials Signal and Why Do Employers Value Credentials?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 133-141, February.
  17. Heckman, James & Layne-Farrar, Anne & Todd, Petra, 1996. "Human Capital Pricing Equations with an Application to Estimating the Effect of Schooling Quality on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 562-610, November.
  18. Jaeger, David A & Page, Marianne E, 1996. "Degrees Matter: New Evidence on Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 733-40, November.
  19. Belman, Dale & Heywood, John S, 1991. "Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education: An Examination on Women and Minorities," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(4), pages 720-24, November.
  20. Vella, Francis & Karmel, Tom, 1999. "Evaluating the Impact of Educational Expansion on the Occupational Status of Youth," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(3), pages 310-27, September.
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