Fundamental resource dis/advantages, youth health and adult educational outcomes

Cheryl Elman, Linda A. Wray, Juan Xi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent studies find lasting effects of poor youth health on educational attainment but use young samples and narrow life course windows of observation to explore outcomes. We apply a life course framework to three sets of Health and Retirement Study birth cohorts to examine early health status effects on education and skills attainment measured late in life. The older cohorts that we study were the earliest recipients of U.S. policies promoting continuing education through the GI Bill, community college expansions and new credentials such as the GED. We examine a wide range of outcomes but focus on GEDs, postsecondary school entry and adult human capital as job-related training. We find that older U.S. cohorts had considerable exposure to these forms of attainment and that the effects of youth health on them vary by outcome: health selection and ascription group effects are weak or fade, respectively, in outcomes associated with delayed or adult attainment. However, poorer health and social disadvantage in youth and barriers associated with ascription carry forward to limit attainment of key credentials such as diplomas and college degrees. We find that the human capital - health gradient is dynamic and that narrow windows of observation in existing studies miss much of it. National context also matters for studying health-education linkages over the life course.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)108-126
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Science Research
Volume43
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Fundamental resource dis/advantages, youth health and adult educational outcomes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this