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Returns to vocational education. Evidence from Poland

Pawel Strawinski (), Paulina Broniatowska () and Aleksandra Majchrowska ()
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Paulina Broniatowska: Warsaw School of Economics
Aleksandra Majchrowska: University of Lodz

No 2016-16, Working Papers from Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw

Abstract: Vocational education in upper-secondary school has been perceived for many years as being inferior to general education, in spite of the fact that vocational education graduates enjoy a faster transition from school to work and are more likely to have a permanent first job. As a consequence of the reform of the educational system that took place in Poland in 1999, the enrolment ratio in vocational schools has fallen dramatically. The empirical evidence in the literature on the returns to vocational education is limited. This study fills that gap and looks into wage premium for workers with vocational education in Poland before and after the reform of the educational system. The relative returns to different types and levels of education were estimated using a standard Mincerian wage equation framework. The empirical analysis concentrated on a comparison of the relative benefits of vocational and non-vocational education. The results showed that vocational education graduates have, on average, a higher probability of finding a permanent job, and secondary-vocational education graduates receive higher earnings than secondary general education graduates in Poland. However, wages of vocational education graduates are lower than those of secondary general education. In spite of this, the decreasing number of vocational education graduates post-reform has contributed to reducing this gap.

Keywords: educational economics; wages; wage differentials; returns to education; vocational education; general education; tertiary education; Poland (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I21 I26 J24 J31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 26 pages
Date: 2016
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-edu, nep-eur and nep-tra
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http://www.wne.uw.edu.pl/index.php/download_file/2759/ First version, 2016 (application/pdf)

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