Recurrent Education, Earnings and Well-Being : A Fifty-Year Longitudinal Study of a Cohort of Swedish Men
Part of the Stockholm studies in educational psychology series
This study investigates the contribution of adult education in complementing and mediating the effects of early formal schooling on life chances, job satisfaction and general well-being.
Data collection for the cohort of Swedish men followed up in the Malmo Study from 1938 to 1988 has been examined. The study employs measures of home background, disposition to learn in the classroom, cognitive ability assessed in childhood and early adulthood, youth educational attainment and indicators of occupational status, earned income, job satisfaction and well-being measured during the early, middle and late stages of life career.
Measures of participation in adult education are available from 30 to 56 years of age. The findings indicate that youth education influences participation in adult education at all ages.
Early participation in adult education also influences participation during subsequent periods. The direct effects of youth education on earnings increase sharply from 25 to 40 years of age and diminish gradually thereafter.
It is concluded that studies investigating the effects of adult education using short-term indicators of program impact have underestimated the contribution of adult education. The direct effects of adult edcuation on subsequent job satisfaction are not significant.
However, a weak total effect is found mediated by occupational status and prospects for career development.
In general, participants in adult education regard their lives as more worthwhile, full, rich and interesting than those who do not take part.
1DNS Sweden, 3JJG c 1918 to c 1939 (Inter-war period), 3JJH c 1939 to c 1945 (including WW2), 3JJP c 1945 to c 2000 (Post-war period), JNC Educational psychology, JNP Adult education, continuous learning