May 2002

IZA DP No. 500: Estimating the Returns to Education Using the Newest Current Population Survey Education Questions

published in: Economics Letters, 2003, 78 (3), 385-394

This paper examines the 1997 additions to the Current Population Survey education question. These new questions allow researchers to come closer to the “highest grade completed” measure available before 1992. Using the new information, the average imputed “highest grade completed” is one-tenth grade greater and the estimated return to education .6 to 1 percentage points lower than when using only the post-1991 “highest degree received” question.