The Impact Of Education Level On Some Aspects Of Wellbeing

Abstract

This research studies the influence/effect of the education level on various aspects of human wellbeing. From the official statistics of the OECD countries, we conclude that a number of important characteristics of wellbeing (level of interpersonal trust, subjective health assessments, confidence in the government) have a steady tendency to increase in practically all the analyzed countries as the level of education increases among employable citizens (25-64 years). In this paper, we identify the countries, in which various aspects of citizens’ wellbeing have been found to reach minimum and maximum values. This analysis accounts for the education levels in accordance with the international description: below upper secondary, upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary, and tertiary. The estimated influence of the education level on various aspects of wellbeing appear to be a very promising direction of research for Russia: a country with a traditionally high level of education (of the population). Unfortunately, it is impossible to make a comparative analysis of the impact of education level of the population in Russia on certain wellbeing parameters using the data given in the collected volume Education at a Glance. OECD Indicators 2014. Russia has not joined this group of countries yet. However, the problem of measuring the relationship between the education level of the population and the subjective perception of wellbeing is very important for Russia. In particular, this stems/results from the need to develop a reliable system of indexes that would allow specialists to assess the continuous (lifelong) wellbeing as objectively as possible.

Keywords: EducationWellbeingInterpersonal TrustHealth StatusConfidence to Government

Introduction

In the collected volume Education at a Glance. OECD Indicators (OECD, 2014) the large-scale statistical data-making conclusion about the impact of the education level of citizens in different countries on the most important aspects of wellbeing are shown. It presents the results of surveys characterizing the assessment of the level of interpersonal trust and confidence in the government and subjective assessment of positive health made by the citizens of different countries. The surveys conducted among the respondents of the age from 25 to 64 years with different education levels. The main conclusions based on the analysis of international statistics are the following.

Problem Statement

International studies pay special attention to the assessment of education level impact on income, the success of a person in society and other determinants of individual and social life (Conti, Heckman & Urzúa, 2010; Heckman et al., 2014, 2016).

The influence of the growth in the level of education on subjective assessments of various aspects of human wellbeing (including the level of interpersonal trust, subjective assessments of health state, confidence in the government), has been researched less(How’s Life?, 2013; OECD Skills Outlook, 2013

Research Questions

The most important issue was the identification of those countries in which the level of interpersonal trust, the subjective assessments of the health state and confidence in the government (as important indicators of the individual wellbeing) amounted to the maximum and minimum values ​​for different education levels.

Purpose of the Study

The research problem was to determine the sustainability of the impact of increasing the education level on the subjective assessment by citizens of different OECD countries in important aspects of human wellbeing: the level of interpersonal trust, subjective assessments of health and confidence in the government

Research Methods

The analyzed sample of OECD countries consisted of 22 states in which each of the parameters considered (the level of interpersonal trust, subjective health assessments and the level of confidence in the government) ranges from the minimum to the maximum for each of the three education levels accordingly international statistics: low level - below upper secondary, secondary level - upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary, higher education - tertiary.

Findings

The relationship between the education level and interpersonal trust

Interpersonal trust characterizes such state of human consciousness, in which he believes in benevolence and decency of people whom he deals with and interacts in a variety of situations, including the degree of predictability of human behaviour in different situations. Based on the statistical data it should be mentioned that the subjective assessments of interpersonal trust level are significantly different in different OECD countries, however, general conclusion is that the interpersonal trust grows with the increase of citizens' education level. People with higher education show the maximum values of this level (Table 01 ). The highest level of interpersonal trust at all education levels (below upper secondary, upper secondary or post-secondary non-tertiary, tertiary) is marked in Denmark. There this value for people with higher education was 63%, which is the highest for OECD. Contrary to Denmark, the lowest rates of interpersonal trust demonstrated the citizens of Slovak Republic. However, even here there is an increase in interpersonal trust level along with the growth of education level of respondents: it reached maximum 13% in the country for the citizens with higher education. The average value of interpersonal trust level among OECD citizens with higher education is 29%. The ratings given by the respondents of Great Britain, Belgium, Canada, Austria, Spain, and the United States were the closest to this value.

Table 1 -
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The relationship between education and positive subjective assessment of health status

During the surveys of OECD countries population, it was found that as the education level increases the proportion of people who are satisfied with their health was increasing too. To the greatest extent in the given group of countries people with higher education satisfied with the state of their health were also found (Table 02 ). The highest level of satisfaction with the health showed highly educated population of Czech Republic, where the corresponding index was 96%, while the lowest level was recorded in Korea (57%). On average in OECD countries, this index for people with higher education was 88%, which is close to the values ​​typical for the Netherlands, France, Finland and Norway.

Table 2 -
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The relationship between the education level and confidence in the government

Over the past years, a number of important political events have been taking place in the world. Undoubtedly, each of them had affected public confidence in the government of a particular country. Education at a Glance. OECD indicators 2014 presents the results of the survey of population in various countries on the subjective assessments of the level of confidence to the government, taking into account the education level of respondents. Table 3 presents its results.

Table 3 -
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As in all previous parameters of wellbeing here, there is an increase in degree of confidence in the government along with the growth of education level of the population. Among OECD countries, Norway became the country with the highest level of confidence in the government among people with higher education (65%). The lowest rate was found in the Czech Republic and Italy (28-29%). The average value of the level of confidence in the government among citizens with higher education in OECD countries established at the level of 43%, which is close to the values ​​recorded, for example, for Great Britain,Korea, Canada, Austria, Slovak Republic and France.

Conclusion

Therefore, having considered the international statistics, we can conclude that for OECD countries as a whole the increasing of manifestation rate for each of wellbeing factors (interpersonal trust, positive subjective assessment of health status and confidence in the government) is observed along with increasing of education level of the respondents.

Unfortunately, it is impossible to make a comparative analysis of the impact of education level of the population in Russia on certain wellbeing parameters using data given in the collected volume Education at a Glance. OECD Indicators 2014 . Russia has not joined this group of countries yet. However, the problem of measuring the relationship between the education level of the population and the subjective perception of wellbeing is very important for Russia. In particular, this is due to the necessity of the development a reliable system of indexes, allowing objectively as much as possible assess the continuous (lifelong) wellbeing.

Acknowledgments

The study supported by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation and performed using the facilities of the Tomsk Polytechnic University, within the research framework in Assessment and Improvement of the Social, Economic and Emotional Well-Being of Older People, Contract No. 14.Z50.31.0029.

References

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Publisher

Future Academy

First Online

18.12.2019

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2018.04.37

Online ISSN

2357-1330