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Career and Technical Education MS Word - This briefing memo is designed to provide policymakers with an overview of the issues surrounding career and technical education in the states, including governance structures, recent legislation and research highlights. (Carl Krueger, Education Commission of the States, October 2004)...

Closing the College Participation Gap: A National Summary - As state economies decline and enrollment demand grows, people’s opportunity to obtain a postsecondary education – and states’ ability to provide access to one – is likely to be challenged in the coming years. This ECS report examines the potential threats to college participation, and offers assistance for policymakers interested in increasing access, particularly for disadvantaged populations. Major findings include: the United States is falling behind other industrialized nations in college participation; demographic and economic forces are converging to limit states’ ability to protect, much less expand, college access; and growing gaps in participation rates based on age, race and income level suggest that large numbers of people are at risk of losing access to a college education. The major theme of the report is that closing the postsecondary participation gap is key to improving both economic and social well-being in states. (Sandra Ruppert, Education Commission of the States, 2003) ...

The Adult Learning Gap: Why States Need to Change Their Policies Toward Adult Learners PDF - In a knowledge-based economy, a postsecondary education is a prerequisite for success. College graduates earn almost double the amount of those with no postsecondary education. But it is not just the individual who benefits – the states do, as well. In this paper, the authors examine the needs of adult learners and the ways in which states can encourage and shape the future of adult education. Changing economics and demographics demand a rethinking of adult learning and its impact on the quality of life for everyone in states. Recommendations include increasing and diversifying the amount of financial aid available to adult learners and placing a new emphasis on adult literacy and ESL programs. (Alice Ann Bailey and James R. Mingle, Education Commission of the States, 2003)...

As America Becomes More Diverse: The Impact of State Higher Education Inequality - The growing immigrant and "minority" populations in most states are the key to future economic and workforce development. It is estimated that the proportion of minority workers in the U.S. will rise to 37% by 2020, while the proportion of white workers will drop to 63%. This report argues that unless states do a better job of producing graduates of color, the income levels of American workers will drop over the next 15 years, putting the U.S. at a competitive disadvantage when compared to other nations. Demographic projections and examinations of the achievement gap between white and minority workers are included as part of the report. (Patrick Kelly, National Center for Higher Education, November 2005)...

Education Pays Update - This supplement to Education Pays 2004, updates selected indicators and adds several new perspectives on the issues. This report provides new details about the gaps in participation in higher education that were documented in the earlier report, including differences in college enrollment rates by family income level; differences in college enrollment rates by race/ethnicity; and differences in participation and degree completion by socioeconomic status, after controlling for level of academic achievement in high school. (Sandy Baum and Kathleen Payea, The College Board, 2005)...

Is More Better? The Impact of Postsecondary Education on the Economic and Social Well-Being of American Society - This literature review examines whether more education is actually better for the individual and society, by investigating whether there are sufficient returns, both economic and non-economic, to the larger society to justify increasing public investment in higher education. The authors find that there are returns to postsecondary education, especially at the individual level, but these benefits may be overstated when relying on income and quality of life measures and more research is needed about the non-economic benefits of investing in postsecondary education. (Adriane Williams and Watson Scott Swail, Educational Policy Institute, May 2005)...

From Middle School to the Workforce: Latino Students in the Educational Pipeline - The study on Latino Students and The Educational Pipeline is a three-part series. This report, which is Part I, examines how National Educational Longitudinal Study Latino students compared to white students over a 12-year period, examining background characteristics, preparation for postsecondary education, access to postsecondary education, postsecondary persistence and completion and employment outcomes. Latino students were less likely to have a parent with an earned educational credential and more likely to be from a low-income background. Additionally, Latino students were more likely to take certain remedial classes and less likely to take rigorous coursework in high school. Almost two-thirds of Latino students who enrolled in postsecondary education did not earn a degree by the year 2000, compared to 40% of white students. (Watson Scott Swail, Alberto F. Cabrera, Chul Lee and Adriane Williams, Educational Policy Institute, April 2005)...

Labor Force Participation in Formal Work-Related Education in 2000-01 - This report examines how adults in the labor force use formal education and training to acquire and maintain their workforce skills. The report examines: (1) labor force participation in work-related education, (2) the role of postsecondary education in work-related education, (3) employer support for work-related education and (4) the role of employment-related inducements to participation. Participation in work-related education was fairly common, with 47% of adults engaging in one of six types of learning activities, with training courses being the most common, followed by postsecondary courses and programs. (Lisa Hudson, Rajika Bhandari, Katharin Peter and David B. Bills, National Center for Education Statistics, September 2005)...

What It’s Worth: Field of Training and Economic Status: 2001 - This document provides an update on the value of an education, with national earnings data for men and women by level of educational attainment. Data are provided by race and Hispanic origin, and the paper includes a section on the amount of time it takes people to complete degrees beyond high school. (Camille L. Ryan, U.S. Census Bureau, September 2005)...

Breaking Through: Helping Low-skilled Adults Enter and Succeed in College and Careers - Traditional degree programs are not designed to reflect the realities of life for low-skilled working adults. This report examines whether – and how – innovative community colleges can significantly improve the odds that low-income, low-skilled adults can earn college-level occupational and technical credentials. The report provides examples of promising state policies, and part II examines four synergistic, high-leverage strategies to increase access and success: (1) integrated institutional structures and services; (2) accelerated learning; (3) labor market payoffs; and (4) comprehensive supports. [Free registration required to access report.] (Marty Liebowitz and Judith Combes Taylor, Jobs for the Future and National Council for Workforce Education, November 2004)...

Education Pays 2004: The Benefits of Higher Education for Individuals and Society - Too often, postsecondary education is thought of as a private, personal benefit. This line of thinking obscures the broader societal benefits that come with high levels of educational attainment – the increased vitality of a state’s economy, greater levels of civic participation, less dependence on welfare and other forms of state support, and lower crime rates. This report from the College Board describes both the personal and societal benefits of postsecondary education through the use of government statistics and academic research. It also documents how uneven access to higher education creates unequal distribution of wealth and resources and ultimately prevents states from running more efficiently. (Sandy Baum and Kathleen Payea, The College Board, 2004) ...

From the Prison Track to the College Track: Pathways to Postsecondary Success for Out-of-School Youth - Four innovative types of high school experiences — reinvented high schools, secondary/postsecondary blends, education/employment blends and extended learning opportunities (outside the school day, year and building) — are proposed as means to encourage youth at risk of dropping out to remain in school and go on to post-diploma success. The authors provide statistical background on the at-risk population, identify the unique characteristics that make these programs work, and identify four high schools — one employing each approach — that help disengaged youth graduate and go on to college and/or meaningful employment. The report likewise calls for specific changes in policy approaches and attitudes to prevent students from dropping out and to assist them in re-entering the system if they leave. [Free registration required to access report.] (Lili Allen, Cheryl Almeida and Adria Steinberg, Jobs for the Future, April 2004)...

Low-Income Adults in Profile: Improving Lives Through Higher Education - This report from the American Council on Education presents data about low-income adults and adult college students, including background characteristics, academic profiles and the policy and institutional obstacles faced by low-income adult learners. The report also features an essay by economists Anthony Carnevale and Donna Desrochers outlining the economic and social imperatives of investing in the education of low-income adults. (Bryan Cook, with Jacqueline E. King, American Council on Education, February 2004)...

Adult Learners and State Policy - Adult learners are increasingly vital to the health and vitality of state economies. This report from the State Higher Education Executive Officers association (SHEEO) reviews adult participation in higher education and offers strategies states can use to improve the capacity and quality of their workforce. (Richard A. Voorhees and Paul Lingenfelter, SHEEO and the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning, 2003) ...

Educational Attainment: A Census 2000 Brief - This report presents data on the educational attainment of Americans 25 years and older by regions, states, counties and cities, and by age, sex and race. Among the major findings: education levels in the United States are high and rising, and growth in educational attainment from 1990 to 2000 occurred throughout the nation, narrowing differences across regions and among states. (U.S. Census Bureau, August 2003) ...

Multiple Pathways and State Policy: Toward Education and Training Beyond High School - Almost all Americans need at least two years of postsecondary education to compete and be successful in today’s economy. This report from the National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education addresses public policy challenges and identifies key education reforms in the areas of finance, accountability and governance to help states achieve the economic goals associated with education and training beyond high school. (Patrick Callan and Joni Finney, The National Center for Public Policy and Higher Education, 2003) ...

Standards for What?: The Economic Roots of K-16 Reform - Baby-boom retirements and flat educational attainment rates mean the United States could face a substantial shortage in skilled workers who have at least some postsecondary education, according to this report. Greater alignment throughout the K-16 education system will be needed to prepare the next generation of workers, the report finds. (Anthony P. Carnevale and Donna Desrochers, Educational Testing Service, 2003) ...

Work First, Study Second: Adult Undergraduates Who Combine Employment and Postsecondary Enrollment - How do the demographic characteristics of students who identify themselves as employees who study differ from those who identify themselves as students who work? How successful are the two groups in completing their postsecondary programs of study? This publication from the National Center for Education Statistics compares two groups of working adult undergraduates enrolled in 1999–2000 according to the emphasis or importance they placed on work versus postsecondary enrollment. (Ali Berker and Laura Horn, National Center for Education Statistics, 2003) ...

The 2002 State New Economy Index - The new knowledge-based economy in the United States is forcing states to rethink their employment and education policies. The Progressive Policy Institute uses 21 economic indicators to assess the types of employment and industries and education levels of the workforce in all 50 states. This report also features a state-level policy framework aimed at raising the standard of living for all citizens. (Progressive Policy Institute, 2002) ...

The Big Payoff: Educational Attainment and Synthetic Estimates of Work-Life - This report focuses on the relationship between educational attainment and earnings, and examines how the relationship has changed over the last 25 years. It also provides, by level of education, estimates of the average total earnings adults are likely to accumulate over the course of their working lives. Since the mid-1970s, earnings differences have grown among workers with different levels of education, according to this report. (U.S. Census Bureau, July 2002) ...

The Well-Being of Nations: The Role of Human and Social Capital - This international study focuses on the correlation between human capital – the knowledge and skills derived from education, training and experience – and national well-being: economic growth, better health, lower crime, political and community participation, and social cohesion. The study found, for example, that one extra year of education leads – on average and in the long run – to an increase in output per capita of 4% to 7%. (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, 2001) ...


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