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Job-related education and training: their impact on earnings.

In the 1980's and early 1990's, a long-term decline in real average earnings of many U.S. workers, a trade deficit, and reductions in manufacturing employment growth became public concerns. The notion was bandied about that both education and job training would have to be strengthened in order for the United States to improve the economic status of its workers, as well as its competitive position in the global marketplace. The following excerpts from published sources are illustrative of official concern about the situation:

The quality of the U.S. workforce matters now more than ever. Well-trained, motivated workers who can produce high quality goods and services at low cost help enhance industrial productivity and competitiveness and keep American living standards high. In today' s international economy, workers must be prepared to change the way they do their jobs in order to capture the benefits from rapidly evolving technology. Training goes hand-in-hand with productivity, quality, flexibility, and automation in the best performing firms.(1)

Our nation is facing a major crisis in education, one larger and more significant than was realized even a few short years ago ....

What is required are far more Americans who can understand mathematical and scientific principles and can apply them to everyday problems on the factory floor and in the executive suite.

What is required are far more Americans who can read and understand complex technical material-- and use that knowledge to perform new tasks. What is required are more Americans who can work in teams to identify and solve problems without relying on direct supervision or rigid rules. What is required are far more Americans who can converse in foreign languages and be cognizant of events beyond our borders. What is required are for more Americans who can live and work effectively with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.(2)

Although essentially policy statements, these excerpts reflect an uneasiness about the state of U.S education and argue consistently for improving worker education and training. However, some general views expounded on the relationship of education to earnings and on how to improve our education and job training systems have raised anomalies. For example, if the Nation has lost ground to international competitors during the past decade, why have postsecondary institution al training in 2-year and bachelor's degree programs in the United States expanded significantly and educational attainment risen during that decade? In addition, will improving the reading, mathematics, and communication skills of our secondary school students ensure that they subsequently enjoy increased earnings? This article attempts to assess the data pertinent to these questions and other closely related subjects.

Education of U.S. workers

One statistic that is used to measure trends in education is the educational attainment of workers. Clearly, there was a pronounced increase in the educational attainment of U.S. workers during the 1970's and 1980's. As shown in table 1, the proportion of workers with 4 or more years of college-roughly, those with a bachelor's or higher degree has increased significantly over the past two decades. In fact, the proportion of college graduates aged 25 to 64 years in the United States is twice that in Germany and Japan.(3) Also, increases in the proportion of workers completing 1 to 3 years of college are similar to those for college graduates. By contrast, at the lower end of the educational scale, the proportion of workers aged 25 to 64 years with fewer than 4 years of high school decreased from 36 percent of the labor force in 1970 to less than 13 percent in 1991.(4)

The proportion of high school graduates who enroll in college directly after completing high school, another measure of educational attainment, has increased significantly over the past two decades. (See table 2.) In October 1973, 46.6 percent of high school graduates were enrolled in college following their graduation. The proportion increased to 60.1 percent in 1990. The increase was evenly distributed between 2-and 4-year college programs. Along with the increases in educational attainment, school dropout rates, as measured by the percent of persons 16 to 24 years of age who neither were enrolled in school nor had completed high school, fell from 14.6 percent in 1972 to 12.5 percent in 1991.

Other data also suggest strengths in the U.S. education system. Increased expenditures (in constant dollars) indicate continued public support for the system. Expenditures per pupil in public elementary and secondary schools rose 43 percent from 1974 to 1990; in public institutions of higher education, the increase was 13 percent. (See table 3.) Compared with public per-pupil expenditures for elementary and secondary schools in Japan ($2,200) and Germany ($2,168), similar U.S. expenditures ($3,846) were higher. Public per-pupil expenditures for higher education in the United States ($5,643), however, were lower than in Japan ($7,221), but higher than in Germany ($4,255).(5) In addition, the reading, mathematics, and science proficiency scores of 17-year-old students in the United States remained about the same during the 1970's and 1980's.(6)

Since the early 1970's, improvements in educational measures have not been accompanied by higher real income for many worker groups. For example, during the 1980's, the median real annual income of men increased only for those with 4 or more years of college, and even then, the 1990 figure of $44,310 for this group was still below its 1972 median of $48,299. (See table 4.) For women, real income increased during the 1980's for those with 1 to 3 years of college and those with 4 or more years of college. Between all other years and for all other education groups shown in the table, real income increased insignificantly or declined.

Postsecondary school training and labor market demand. A vast amount of postsecondary training is provided by public and private colleges and universities, junior and community colleges, and vocational schools. Nearly 2.9 million awards and degrees were received by individuals during the 1989-90 academic year, according to the National Center for Educational Statistics.(7) These awards and degrees are classified by field of training in accordance with the Classification of Instructional Programs.(8) In turn, the training categories can be matched with an occupation or with an occupation group comprised of a few to several detailed occupations in the employment data compiled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Some of these matches are very precise, such as that between the degrees awarded for completing medical school and the profession of physician and that between the completions of cosmetology vocational school programs and the profession of cosmetologist. Others are less precise. For example, the completion of one or more degrees in business administration provides training needed by workers in a wide variety of managerial occupations, and skills learned in a secretarial or typing vocational program can be used in a variety of clerical occupations. A few fields of study cannot be matched with any related specific occupation. For example, completion of bachelor's degree programs in Russian or Japanese do not fit well with any particular profession, even though the education received can no doubt be applied in fields of work involved with foreign trade or teaching. (Of course, the latter would likely require an advanced degree, at least at the collegiate level.)(9)

After the training categories have been matched with occupations or groups of occupations, the awards and degrees can be compared with projections of job openings. Job openings result from employment growth and the need to replace individuals who leave an occupation. For the purposes of this article, the measure of replacement needs considers only persons who leave the occupation permanently, not those who leave on a temporary basis.(10) However, during any given period, there is a great deal of movement into, out of, and between occupations. Moreover, the amount of movement varies considerably among occupations, and it is very difficult to measure with any degree of precision. For occupations in which there is much mover, the total job openings may be many times higher than the number of net job openings. Thus, any comparisons between the estimates of net openings and training completions should be made with great caution.

Obviously, comparisons of job openings with degrees and awards are subject to many limitations, including the following: (1) Many of the matches between occupations and fields of study result from subjective decisions that may be erroneous. (2) The number of openings projected in an occupation is dependent on the accuracy of estimates of projected employment growth and replacement needs in that occupation. (3) Data about degrees and awards provide information only about training obtained in schools or other formal educational programs and do not take into account, for example, training obtained in apprenticeship programs, in the Armed Forces, or from private employers. (4) Fields of study for about 310,000 degrees and awards could not be matched with any specific occupation. (5) Fields of study were considered appropriate training for 260 occupations or occupation groups-only about one-half of the occupations in the BLS projections model. Because there are no institutional training programs in many occupations, the exclusion from the analysis of a significant number of occupations is not unexpected.

Despite these limitations, comparing the number of completions of education and training programs with the number of job openings due to employment growth and replacement needs in related occupations prepared as part of the BLS Occupational Outlook Program may provide some useful insights. Such an endeavor shows that, overall, there were nearly 2.9 million awards and degrees in 1989-90, compared with an estimated 4.4 million job openings, on average, for new entrants to the work force each year from 1990 to 2005. (See table 5.) That is, the number of individuals currently completing training programs is about 65 percent of the average annual number of job openings anticipated through the 1990's. Again, this proportion is not surprising, given that many jobs do not require post-secondary school training.

Some individual occupations appearing in table 5 show close matches between the projected needs of the workplace over the next decade and the current number of awards and degrees in related education and training programs. Among these are engineers, optometrists, dental hygienists and assistants, emergency medical technicians, landscape architects, and aircraft mechanics. In contrast, many occupations had substantially more individuals trained during 1989-90 than the projected annual average number of job openings from 1990 to 2005 due to employment growth and the need to replace workers who leave the occupation permanently. For example, the 23,949 bachelor degrees in economics awarded in 1989-90 greatly exceed the 2,000 job openings in the field that are projected to occur annually during the 1990-2005 period; however, collegiate training in economics may be useful indirectly for many entry-level professional positions.

On the other hand, there are many fields in which the output of institutional training programs is much less than the projected number of job openings. Of course, for some occupations--for example, cashiers--formal training may not be needed, and what training there is can be learned in a few hours or a few days on the job. For other occupations, however, training is important. In most construction crafts, and in many mechanic and repairer occupations, the number of job openings projected from 1990 to 2005 is much greater than the number of education and training awards received in 1989-90. For the construction crafts, this is understandable, as many workers are trained on the job, some in formal apprenticeship programs. However, additional vocational training for construction occupations may provide workers who lack the necessary skills with greater job potential than other types of vocational training. Additional training may also be appropriate for many other occupations where annual completions are far fewer than estimated job openings and for some occupations that have no associated training programs at all.

Utility of education and job training

The discussion in the preceding section afforded a broad view of the relationship of the output of our educational institutions, by field of training, to the projected outlook in the job market, by occupation. Another view of the relationship of education to the job market is provided in information about the extent and utility of training for individual workers. Such information was compiled from respondents' answers to the questions in the January 1991 Current Population Survey about whether they needed specific skills or training to get their current jobs.(11) Respondents also were questioned on whether or not they took training to improve their skills in their current jobs. The responses provided information not only about an individual's view of the utility of school-based training, but also about the utility of formal and informal company training in the current job and about other types of training.(12) Data on earnings were analyzed to assess the impact of the various sources of training.

Several significant findings emerged from the analysis. First, the data may provide some support for the results of an earlier BLS study which found that many college graduates have acquired training that they are not using in their current jobs.(13) They may have acquired general skills that make them more productive than workers with less education, but they are not using training specifically from their major field of study. Second, the results of the analysis show the extent to which training is used in the labor market in general, as approximately 2 out of 3 workers responded that specific skills or training was needed to obtain their current jobs or that they had taken training to improve their skills. (Conversely, 1 in 3 responded that qualifying training or training to improve skills was not required to obtain his or her current job.)(14) Third, the data on earnings show clearly that the job itself counts: at each of the four levels of educational attainment examined---college graduate, some college, high school graduate, and fewer than 12 years of schooling--those who said that they required specific skills or training to get their jobs received higher earnings than those at the same education level who said that they did not require any such skills to get their jobs. Moreover, workers who required specific skills or training to get their jobs and who also took training to improve their skills through a formal company program had higher earnings than those with the same level of education who improved their skills through training at a school or informally while on the job. Finally, while data from this survey show--as do other data--that educational attainment is directly related to earnings, they also show that being in a job that requires skills is beneficial for many workers, irrespective of their education level.

Qualifying training. In January 1991, 57 percent of all workers reported that they needed specific skills or training to get their current jobs. As shown in table 6, informal on-the-job training, 4-year or longer college programs, formal company training, training through junior colleges or technical institutes, and training from friends or relatives or other nonwork-related training were the most frequently reported sources. Relatively few cited high school vocational training, post-high school vocational training, training from the Armed Forces, or correspondence courses.(15)

The proportion of workers who reported needing training varied extensively by educational attainment. Only 28 percent of those with fewer than 12 years of education said that they needed training to get their current jobs. This contrasts with 84 percent for college graduates who said that they needed such training. At 18 percent, informal on-the-job training was the largest source of training for persons with fewer than 12 years of schooling who reported that they needed qualifying training, but even that figure was significantly below the 26 to 32 percent with informal on-the-job training reported by the other education groups. These data indicate that workers who are not high school graduates are much less likely than others to obtain jobs that require training.

There was also great variation in the proportion of workers among the major occupation groups who reported needing qualifying training. Not surprisingly, professional specialty workers had the highest proportion needing special skills or training, 92 percent; handlers, equipment cleaners, and laborers had the lowest proportion, 20 percent. College graduates who are in a job that requires training are more likely than college graduates who are in a job that does not require training to be a professional specialty worker. Their numbers underlie the high proportion of professional specialty workers who needed qualifying training. Similarly, those with the least education who did not need training are more likely to work as handlers, equipment cleaners, and laborers than to be in other occupation groups; thus, they are the reason for the low proportion of those requiring qualifying training for this occupation group.

To measure the utility of college training in the labor market, one can compare the proportion of employees who are college graduates with the proportion who are college graduates and who also reported that they needed training to qualify for their jobs.(16) As shown in table 7, 25 percent of employees were college graduates, but only 16 percent reported needing training obtained in a 4-year or longer college program. This indicates that about 1 in 3 college graduates may have acquired training that is not being used in his or her current job. Again, such a conclusion is consistent with the results of another BLS study.(17) A more divergent pattern exists for workers with 1 to 3 years of college. This group constitutes 22 percent of all workers, but only about 1 in 5 of the group reported needing training from a junior college or technical institute, an indication that much of the training received was not appropriate for the jobs these workers obtained. Of course, the group also includes those who started in a 4-year bachelor's degree program, but who did not complete it.

Between January 1983 the only other date for which comparable data are available--and January 1991, the number of workers reporting that they needed training to get their current job increased from 54 million to 65 million.(18) This 20-percent increase was roughly equivalent to employment growth over the 1983-91 period. In contrast, significant changes occurred among the types of training reported on the two dates. Training reported by friends or relatives and other nonwork-related training increased by 165 percent during the period, more than 8 times the 19-percent increase in employment, although such training remained a relatively small portion of the total.(19) Qualifying training obtained from junior colleges and technical institutes grew 79 percent, formal company training programs 48 percent, and 4-year or longer college programs 35 percent. Informal on-the-job training increased 16 percent, slightly less than the 19-percent increase in employment, while qualifying training obtained in high school and post-high school vocational education programs declined 4 and 14 percent, respectively. Thus, training obtained in educational institutions and formal company programs provided the bulk of the additional qualifying skills needed by the work force during the 1980's.

Training to improve skills. In addition to training needed to qualify for their jobs, many workers take training to improve their skills. In January 1991, 47 million workers, 41 percent of all employees, reported taking such training since obtaining their present job. (See table 8.)(20)

Formal company training and informal on-the-job training shared the distinction of being the largest source of training to improve skills, with about 15 percent of all workers identifying each of them. Other sources of training from friends, relatives, and others--was the next largest category, but, at 7 percent, was less than half the size of either formal or informal company training. With just under 5 percent each, 4-year or longer college programs and junior colleges and technical institutes were less prominent as sources of training to improve skills than they were as sources of qualifying training. Relatively few persons identified post-high school or high school vocational training as a source of training to improve skills.

For the major occupation groups, data on training to improve skills reflect the fact that the incidence of such training increases with educational attainment. Professonal specialty workers, who generally require a college degree, had the highest proportion who took this kind of training, 68 percent; the group accounted for 23 percent of all training to improve skills, but only 14 percent of employment. Most training to improve skills--58 percent of the total taken in 4-year or longer college programs--accrued to workers in professional specialty occupations.(21)

Unlike the situation with qualifying training, the proportion of workers reporting that they had taken training to improve their skills increased significantly from 35 percent to 41 percent--between 1983 and 1991.(22) The number of workers reporting such training rose from 34 million to 47 million, a 39-percent increase, compared with a 19-percent increase in employment over the period. Other types of training increased the fastest (85 percent), followed by formal company training (69 percent). The number of workers reporting that they had had formal company training grew from 7 million to 18 million and was responsible for 40 percent of the increase in training taken to improve skills between 1983 and 1991.

Impact on earnings. While information about the number of workers who needed training to obtain their jobs or who took training to improve their skills measures the utility of education and training, data on earnings measure the benefit of the training to workers. Earnings data from the January 1991 CPS display the same patterns as the 1991 CPS annual average data: median earnings of full-time workers increase with increases in educational attainment--about $80.00 weekly for each higher level of attainment. (See table 9.)(23) These data also show that, for all education groups, earnings are higher in jobs that generally require qualifying training or jobs in which training is taken to improve skills. For example, for each level of educational attainment examined, except for college graduates, the median weekly earnings of those whose only type of training was qualifying training was approximately 15 percent higher than those in the same education group who did not report needing such training; for college graduates, the difference was an even greater 35 percent. Similarly, excluding those with fewer than 12 years of education, the median weekly earnings for workers whose only training was training to improve their skills were about 30 percent higher than those with neither type of training. Workers who took both qualifying training and training to improve their skills had the largest differential, about 30 percent to 50 percent higher than the earnings of those reporting that they had had neither type of training.

Note in table 9 that the earnings of individuals with fewer than 12 years of school who reported both qualifying training and training to improve their skills were higher than the earnings of persons with some college but neither of those forms of training. Similarly, high school graduates who reported that they had had both kinds of training earned slightly more than college graduates with neither type of training.

No comparison by occupation and education group of the earnings of those with and those without the two types of training is possible, because the distribution of educational attainment by occupation is skewed and the sample is too small to obtain reliable data for all occupations.(24) To obtain some measure of the occupational impact on earnings, occupations were categorized by whether a college degree was or was not required, using BLS categorizations developed for an analysis previously completed.(25)

The data presented in table 9 on earnings by whether a college degree is or is not generally required for a job prompt two observations. First, for all education groups, the earnings of workers in occupations that generally require a college degree are higher than those of workers in jobs that do not require a college degree. This is so, irrespective of whether or not the workers needed training to get their job or took training to improve their skills. Even with less education, workers in occupations that generally require a college degree have higher earnings than their counterparts in occupations that do not generally require a college degree. Also, college graduates in occupations that generally require a college degree and who both required training to qualify for their jobs and took training to improve their skills receive the highest compensation, about $130 a week more than those with some college who took the same training and about $90 a week more than college graduates in occupations generally requiring a college degree and who did not take either form of training.

The second observation prompted by table 9 relates to the premium paid college graduates who have taken both qualifying training and training to improve their skills in occupations not generally requiring a college degree. While earning about $110 a week less than college graduates who have taken the same training in occupations generally requiring a college degree, this group earns about $100 a week more than those with the same training in occupations not generally requiring a college degree and who have had only some college, and almost $200 a week more than college graduates in occupations not generally requiring a college degree and who have taken neither form of training.

Examining 1991 earnings within each of the educational attainment groups for those needing training to qualify for their jobs and who also took training to improve their skills provides an insight into the impact of each source of the latter form of training on earnings. (See table 10.) For all four education levels, persons reporting formal company training as the source of training to improve their skills had the highest earnings.

Data on earnings for 1983 display patterns similar to those observed in 1991.26 In 1983, earnings increased with education, and workers who needed qualifying training or who took training to improve their skills consistently earned more than workers who did not. Similar to the 1991 survey, those taking both types of training earned about 50 percent more than those who took neither. Consistent patterns between 1991 and 1983 also are observed regarding occupations that generally required a college degree and those that generally did not. Workers in all education categories in occupations that generally required a college degree earned more than those in occupations that generally did not require a degree, and workers needing qualifying training and who took training to improve their skills earned more than those who did not. Data for 1983 also show that workers who needed qualifying training and who obtained training to improve their skills in formal company programs earned more than those who obtained the latter training in schools or informal on-the-job programs.

Job market changes

Information provided by workers about whether they needed specific skills or training to qualify for their current job or whether they took training to improve their skills provides a richer measure of the relationship of education and training to earnings than do data about educational attainment alone. Workers in jobs that require qualifying skills and that encourage the development of skills through training have higher earnings at all levels of education. With the recent emergence of a global economy, however, increased competition from foreign firms is changing the distribution of goods and services produced by U.S. companies, the technology used in their production, the types of workers those companies need, and the availability of jobs traditionally held by workers with the least education. Data that show the impact of these changes on the job market point up the importance of jobs that require and encourage training.

Table 11 presents information about employment, educational attainment, the utilization of education and training, and earnings for full-time workers for 1983 and 1991. Managerial and professional specialty occupations experienced the highest growth rate and the greatest increase in employment share between the 2 years, while operators, fabricators, and laborers ranked lowest in each of these categories. Differences in worker characteristics among these groups are striking. In 1991, managerial and professional specialty occupations had the lowest proportion of full-time workers who had a high school education or less, the highest proportion of college graduates, and the highest proportion that took training. None of the proportions had changed much from 1983. In 1991, managerial and professional specialty occupations enjoyed the highest absolute earnings and had the greatest increase in real earnings. Operators, fabricators, and laborers, on the other hand, had the highest proportion of workers who had a high school education or less, the lowest proportion of college graduates, and the second lowest proportion that took training. While not the lowest of all groups, the absolute earnings of operators, fabricators, and laborers in 1991 were 20 percent below those of all workers. With a 6.3-percent decline from the 1983 figure, real earnings for this group fell the most of all the groups.

As described elsewhere, the restructuring of U.S. industry in response to foreign competition has had a major impact on earnings.(27) As firms adjusted by moving assembly operations overseas or by introducing more productive equipment, many workers who received high wages to repeat simple tasks required by the mass production techniques employed throughout the U.S. economy lost their jobs or moved to other, less well-paying jobs.(28) In some cases, their jobs were reorganized to require an ability to monitor a machine or to work as pan of a team; either responsibility makes demands on reading, mathematical, communication, and other skills that operator, fabricator, and laborer jobs typically do not require. The increase in the number of college graduates within this group may have resulted from employers being able to obtain greater productivity from workers with better basic academic skills.

It is instructive to contrast the data on precision production, craft, and repair occupations with those on operators, fabricators, and laborers. Because of reduced demand due to industry restructuring, employment increased less than average in both occupation groups over the 1983-91 period. Both retained large proportions of workers with a high school education or less, had low proportions of college graduates, and experienced real earnings declines of about 6 percent over the period. Real earnings of precision production, craft, and repair occupations in 1991, however, were 12 percent above those of all workers and 33 percent above operators, fabricators, and laborers.

Earnings of precision production, craft, and repair workers are higher probably because these workers are more productive, the result of being in jobs that are more likely to use their skills. The proportion of precision production, craft, and repair workers using training (74 percent) and their earnings are exceeded only by those of managerial and professional specialty occupations.

Summary

Despite the widely held view that the quality of U.S. education and training is poor, the Nation is increasingly committed to education. Educational attainment has increased significantly in the past two decades, as the proportion of students attending and completing college has increased. Fewer students are now dropping out of school before completing high school than in the past. While many high school graduates are cited as having inadequate reading, mathematics, and science skills, and high school students are identified as having skills inferior to those of their counterparts in many other countries, standardized tests of reading, mathematics, and science skills show that these have remained the same or increased slightly over the past decade. The basic skills of new high school graduates do not appear to have changed, and those of some graduates in the past, just as in the present, probably were poor. What have changed are the demands of the job market. Large numbers of high-paying production jobs that required unskilled workers to repeat simple tasks have been greatly reduced. The workplace has been reorganized, and more jobs now require reading, mathematics, and communication skills.

There may be a need for a better match between educational programs and the requirements of the workplace. Clearly, educational attainment, as measured by years of school completed, is related positively to earnings: workers having higher educational attainment have higher average earnings. However, education by itself does not guarantee high income. For example, many workers with college degrees indicate that they are employed in jobs that do not require special skills or education and that their earnings are lower than the earnings of college graduates in jobs that require specialized education or skills. And workers with less education, but who are employed in jobs that require special skills or training, earn as much as college graduates who do not require training to get their job. Consequently, the skill and educational requirements of a job have a major impact on earnings. Thus, it is apparent that, to have a great effect on earnings, the educational and skill requirements of jobs, as well as the education and skills of workers, must be increased.

A final observation relates to the critical role of employers, both in providing training and in using it. Evidence suggests that, except for 4-year or longer college programs, formal and informal company training provides more workers with their required job skills than any other source of training. Employers also are the primary source of training for workers who wish to improve their skills in their current job. Combined with the training required to obtain a job, formal company training programs to improve the skills of workers have more of an impact on increasing those workers' earnings than does any other source of training.

[TABULAR DATA OMITTED]

Footnotes

1 Worker Training: Competing in the New International Economy, Report No. OTA-ITE-457 (Office of Technology Assessment, September 1990), p. 3.

2 Report of the Task Force on Education, Educating America, State Strategies for Achieving the National Education Goals (Washington, National Governors' Association, 1990), p. 7.

3 The Condition of Education, 1992 (National Center for Education Statistics, 1992), p. 64.

4 Data for 1992 indicate that 12.4 percent of the labor force 25 years and older had less than a high school diploma. However, this figure does not appear in the table, because 1992 was the first year for a new definition describing educational attainment in terms of the highest degree earned, as opposed to the number of years of school completed.

5 The Condition of Education, 1992, p. 132. Data are current per-pupil expenditures for education, in fiscal-year 1989 U.S. dollars. These data are for public expenditures only and are not comparable to the data on public and private expenditures presented in table 3.

6 The Condition of Education, 1992, pp. 42, 46, 48.

7 See Occupational Projections and Training Data, Bulletin 2401 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1992), table 8, pp. 54-70.

8 The Classification of Instructional Programs is the Department of Education's taxonomic standard for Federal sarveys and State reporting of institutional data, as well as the accepted guide for data reported to the Federal Government by individual institutions and other educational providers. Data in this article reflect the 1985 revision.

9 Fields of study for about 310,000 degrees and awards could not be matched with any occupation. See table 5 for information about the types of degrees and awards that were matched with various occupations, as well as those that could not be matched.

10 See Occupational Projections and Training Data, table 6 for data on job openings and chapter 5 for information on how data on replacement needs were prepared.

11 The Current Population Survey is a monthly survey of approximately 60,000 households conducted by the Bureau of the Census for the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

12 How Workers Get Their Training: A 1991 Update, Bulletin 2407 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, August 1992), provides an extensive analysis of the data on training that were collected in the January 1991 Current Population Survey.

13 See the following articles in the July 1992 Monthly Labor Review: Daniel E. Hecker, "Reconciling conflicting data on jobs for college graduates," pp. 3-12; and Kristina J. Shelley, "The future of jobs for college graduates," pp. 13-21.

14 Because the survey asked, "Did you need specific skills or training to get your current (last) job," some individuals may have reported only training obtained formally or informally in a structured setting and may not have reported informal training obtained while "learning by doing" in a previous job. Others may not have regarded their college preparation as training: there were, for example, doctors, teachers, dentists, and scientists who responded that they were not using their school training in their jobs. The extent to which training may have been understated in these two ways could not be determined.

15 Because each respondent was permitted to identify more than one source of training, the total sources of training identified exceeds the number of those who reported needing training. In all, almost 95 million sources of qualifying training were identified by 65 million workers.

16 Information about training obtained in schools can be compared because the educational attainment of workers is known. The proportion of company and other types of training actually used cannot be determined because the total training these sources provide is unknown.

17 Shelley, "The future of jobs for college graduates."

18 How Workers Get Their Training, Bulletin 2226 (Bureau of Labor Statistics, February 1985), reports on data collected in the January 1983 Current Population Survey. The questions used to collect information on training in the January 1983 and January 1991 Current Population Surveys were virtually identical.

19 Much of the increase in training received from friends or relatives and in other nonwork-related training is probably attributable to a change in the January 1991 questionnaire, in which the data from two sources are combined: (I) friends or relatives or other nonwork-related training and (2) other. In January 1983, only the former category was cited. The availability of the additional, specific category, "other," may have increased the number of responses for what had previously been one source.

20 Because individuals could have taken more than one type of training, 58 million sources of training to improve skills were identified by 47 million workers. See How Workers Get Their Training: A 1991 Update, table 46, p. 36.

21 Elementary and secondary school teachers alone accounted for 24 percent of all training to improve skills that was obtained in 4-year college or longer programs; by contrast, they accounted for only 3 percent of employment.

22 How Workers Get Their Training, table 45, pp. 51-56. 23 To the extent that individuals with greater ability acquire more education and receive more training, the data may overstate the impact of education and training.

24 For example, regarding skew, college graduates are concentrated in the professional specialty; executive, administrative, and managerial; and technician and related support occupations, and conversely, few persons with the least education were employed in the occupation groups in which college graduates were concentrated. Regarding sample size, no reliable data on the earnings of those with and those without both kinds of training were available for groups other than college graduates.

25 Workers with college degrees who are in the executive and managerial, professional specialty, or technician occupation groups, as well as sales representatives and sales supervisors, insurance adjusters and investigators, police officers, farm managers, and craftworker supervisors, are considered to be in jobs that generally require a college degree. See Hecker, "Reconciling conflicting data," p. 4.

26 The 1983 data on earnings are based on unpublished tabulations of data from the January 1983 Current Population Survey.

27 See, for example, Anthony P. Carnevale, America and the New Economy (Washington, American Society for Training and Development, 1991).

28 Jennifer M. Gardner, "Recession swells count of displaced workers," Monthly Labor Review, June 1993, pp. 14-23.
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Date:Oct 1, 1993
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Lost opportunity: increased economic growth, fueled by improvements in student performance, might have funded the nation's entire K-12 education...
Change in employment by occupation, industry, and earnings quartile, 2000-05: an examination of employment changes in occupations and industries by...
How does investment in tertiary education improve outcomes for New Zealanders?

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