This study investigates the direct and indirect effects of education on an individual's self-reported work hours lost due to illness with data from the Michigan Panel Study of Income Dynamics. It is argued that education can influence health directly through greater knowledge of health problems, and indirectly by allowing access to a high-status job. Although the measure of ill-health used in the study may not be entirely accurate, and the model only allows for causation running from education, earnings, and occupational status to illness rather than vice-versa, the results suggest that education has only significant indirect effects and no direct effects on ill-health. If education affects health only through allowing the individual access to a higher status job and if the proportion of higher status jobs is relatively constant, then increased education will not enhance public health.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
- Sociology and Political Science