Direct and indirect effects of education on health

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


In virtually every study by economists considering the determinants of an individual's health, years of schooling has stood out as an important regressor. Yet there is little agreement among economists concerning the mechanisms through which schooling affects health. This study is a first attempt to test for the direct and indirect effects of education on an individual's health. Education is assumed to enhance health directly by, for example, allowing wise use of medical care and indirectly through encouraging healthy habits and caution in the choice of occupation. Evidence from two national surveys indicates that the indirect dominate the direct effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)227-234
Number of pages8
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1983
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Social Psychology
  • Development
  • Health(social science)


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