IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/iza/izadps/dp1927.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

A Human Capital Model of the Effects of Abilities and Family Background on Optimal Schooling Levels

Author

Listed:
  • Regan, Tracy L.

    (Boston College)

  • Burghardt, Galen

    (Calyon Financial)

  • Oaxaca, Ronald L.

    (University of Arizona)

Abstract

This paper develops a theoretical model of optimal schooling levels where ability and family background are the central explanatory variables. We derive schooling demand and supply functions based on individual wealth maximization. Using NLSY79 data we stratify our sample into one-year "FTE" work experience cohorts for 1985-1989. Mincer's (1974) "overtaking" cohort (the years of work experience at which individuals' observed earnings approximately equal what they would have been based on schooling and ability alone) corresponds to 13 FTE years of work experience yielding on average a rate of return of 9.6 percent and an average (optimal) 11.4 years of schooling.

Suggested Citation

  • Regan, Tracy L. & Burghardt, Galen & Oaxaca, Ronald L., 2006. "A Human Capital Model of the Effects of Abilities and Family Background on Optimal Schooling Levels," IZA Discussion Papers 1927, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1927
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://docs.iza.org/dp1927.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Willis, Robert J & Rosen, Sherwin, 1979. "Education and Self-Selection," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 7-36, October.
    2. 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.
    3. Griliches, Zvi & Mason, William M, 1972. "Education, Income, and Ability," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(3), pages 74-103, Part II, .
    4. Stephen V. Cameron & Christopher Taber, 2004. "Estimation of Educational Borrowing Constraints Using Returns to Schooling," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(1), pages 132-182, February.
    5. Neumark, David, 1999. "Biases in twin estimates of the return to schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 143-148, April.
    6. Gary S. Becker, 1962. "Investment in Human Capital: A Theoretical Analysis," NBER Chapters, in: Investment in Human Beings, pages 9-49, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Sveinn Agnarsson & Paul S. Carlin, 2002. "SFamily Background and the Estimated Return to Schooling: Swedish Evidenc," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 37(3), pages 680-692.
    8. Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1990. "Empirical Age-Earnings Profiles," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 202-229, April.
    9. Lang, Kevin & Ruud, Paul A, 1986. "Returns to Schooling, Implicit Discount Rates and Black-White Wage Differentials," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 68(1), pages 41-47, February.
    10. Kling, Jeffrey R, 2001. "Interpreting Instrumental Variables Estimates of the Returns to Schooling," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(3), pages 358-364, July.
    11. David Card, 1994. "Earnings, Schooling, and Ability Revisited," Working Papers 710, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    12. Hungerford, Thomas & Solon, Gary, 1987. "Sheepskin Effects in the Returns to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 69(1), pages 175-177, February.
    13. 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.
    14. Griliches, Zvi, 1979. "Sibling Models and Data in Economics: Beginnings of a Survey," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages 37-64, October.
    15. Hause, John C, 1972. "Earnings Profile: Ability and Schooling," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 80(3), pages 108-138, Part II, .
    16. Ana M. Ferrer & W. Craig Riddell, 2002. "The role of credentials in the Canadian labour market," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 35(4), pages 879-905, November.
    17. Cameron, Stephen V & Heckman, James J, 1993. "The Nonequivalence of High School Equivalents," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 1-47, January.
    18. Lazear, Edward P, 1977. "Education: Consumption or Production?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 569-597, June.
    19. 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.
    20. Shea, John, 2000. "Does parents' money matter?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 155-184, August.
    21. Rouse, Cecilia Elena, 1999. "Further estimates of the economic return to schooling from a new sample of twins," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 149-157, April.
    22. Harley Frazis, 1993. "Selection Bias and the Degree Effect," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 28(3), pages 538-554.
    23. Orley Ashenfelter & David J. Zimmerman, 1997. "Estimates Of The Returns To Schooling From Sibling Data: Fathers, Sons, And Brothers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 79(1), pages 1-9, February.
    24. Altonji, Joseph G & Dunn, Thomas A, 1996. "The Effects of Family Characteristics on the Return to Education," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(4), pages 692-704, November.
    25. Kane, Thomas J & Rouse, Cecilia Elena, 1995. "Labor-Market Returns to Two- and Four-Year College," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(3), pages 600-614, June.
    26. Lang, Kevin, 1993. "Ability Bias, Discount Rate Bias and the Return to Education," MPRA Paper 24651, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    27. Orley Ashenfelter & Cecilia Rouse, 1998. "Income, Schooling, and Ability: Evidence from a New Sample of Identical Twins," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 253-284.
    28. Kevin Lang & Jay L. Zagorsky, 2001. "Does Growing up with a Parent Absent Really Hurt?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(2), pages 253-273.
    29. John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 1997. "On-the-Job Training," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number ojt.
    30. Griliches, Zvi, 1976. "Wages of Very Young Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(4), pages 69-85, August.
    31. 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 733-740, November.
    32. Behrman, Jere R. & Rosenzweig, Mark R., 1999. ""Ability" biases in schooling returns and twins: a test and new estimates," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 159-167, April.
    33. Ashenfelter, Orley & Krueger, Alan B, 1994. "Estimates of the Economic Returns to Schooling from a New Sample of Twins," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1157-1173, December.
    34. Griliches, Zvi, 1977. "Estimating the Returns to Schooling: Some Econometric Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, January.
    35. Behrman, Jere R & Birdsall, Nancy, 1983. "The Quality of Schooling: Quantity Alone is Misleading," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(5), pages 928-946, December.
    36. Peter Kennedy, 2003. "A Guide to Econometrics, 5th Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 5, volume 1, number 026261183x, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Krenz, Astrid, 2010. "La distinction reloaded: Returns to education, family background, cultural and social capital in Germany," University of Göttingen Working Papers in Economics 108, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    2. repec:got:cegedp:108 is not listed on IDEAS

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Tracy L. Regan & Ronald L. Oaxaca & Galen Burghardt, 2007. "A Human Capital Model Of The Effects Of Ability And Family Background On Optimal Schooling Levels," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 45(4), pages 721-738, October.
    2. Angel de la Fuente & Antonio Ciccone, 2003. "Human capital in a global and knowledge-based economy," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 562.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
    3. Astrid Krenz, 2008. "Theorie und Empirie über den Wirkungszusammenhang zwischen sozialer Herkunft, kulturellem und sozialem Kapital, Bildung und Einkommen in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 128, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    4. Krenz, Astrid, 2010. "La distinction reloaded: Returns to education, family background, cultural and social capital in Germany," University of Göttingen Working Papers in Economics 108, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    5. Reuben Gronau, 2010. "Zvi Griliches' Contribution to the Theory of Human Capital," NBER Chapters, in: Contributions in Memory of Zvi Griliches, pages 275-297, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. James J. Heckman & Lance J. Lochner & Petra E. Todd, 2003. "Fifty Years of Mincer Earnings Regressions," NBER Working Papers 9732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. repec:got:cegedp:108 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Justin L. Tobias, 2003. "Are Returns to Schooling Concentrated Among the Most Able? A Semiparametric Analysis of the Ability–earnings Relationships," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 65(1), pages 1-29, February.
    9. Bound, John & Solon, Gary, 1999. "Double trouble: on the value of twins-based estimation of the return to schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 169-182, April.
    10. Colm Harmon & Hessel Oosterbeek & Ian Walker, 2000. "The returns to education : a review of evidence, issues and deficiencies in the literature," Open Access publications 10197/670, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    11. Orley Ashenfelter & Cecilia Rouse, 1998. "Income, Schooling, and Ability: Evidence from a New Sample of Identical Twins," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 113(1), pages 253-284.
    12. Mikael Lindahl & Alan B. Krueger, 2001. "Education for Growth: Why and for Whom?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1101-1136, December.
    13. Alan B. Krueger & Mikael Lindahl, 1998. "Education for Growth in Sweden and the World," Working Papers 790, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    14. Joseph G. Altonji & Thomas A. Dunn, 1995. "The Effects of School and Family Characteristics on the Return to Education," NBER Working Papers 5072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. repec:ucn:wpaper:10197/1099 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Gunnar Isacsson, 2004. "Estimating the economic return to educational levels using data on twins," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(1), pages 99-119.
    17. Dr Mohammad Rafiqul Islam & Dr Nicholas Sim, 2021. "Education and Food Consumption Patterns: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from Indonesia," Papers 2109.08124, arXiv.org.
    18. Daeheon Choi & Chune Young Chung & Ha Truong, 2019. "Return on Education in Two Major Vietnamese Cities," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 11(18), pages 1-30, September.
    19. Carneiro, Pedro & Heckman, James J., 2003. "Human Capital Policy," IZA Discussion Papers 821, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    20. Maluccio, John A., 1998. "Endogeneity of schooling in the wage function," FCND discussion papers 54, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    21. Tyler, John H., 2004. "Basic skills and the earnings of dropouts," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 221-235, June.
    22. Dorothe Bonjour & Lynn F. Cherkas & Jonathan E. Haskel & Denise D. Hawkes & Tim D. Spector, 2003. "Returns to Education: Evidence from U.K. Twins," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(5), pages 1799-1812, December.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    family background; ability; human capital; schooling; earnings;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1927. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Holger Hinte (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/izaaade.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.