Journal Article

Effect of Postsecondary Education on the Economic Status of Persons Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

Sara Schley, Gerard G. Walter, Robert R. Weathers, Jeffrey Hemmeter, John C. Hennessey and Richard V. Burkhauser

in The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education

Volume 16, issue 4, pages 524-536
Published in print January 2011 | ISSN: 1081-4159
Published online February 2011 | e-ISSN: 1465-7325 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/deafed/enq060
Effect of Postsecondary Education on the Economic Status of Persons Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing

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This article examines the effect that postsecondary education has on earnings and the duration of time spent in the Social Security disability programs for young persons who are deaf or hard of hearing. Our hypothesis is that investments in postsecondary training increase the likelihood of employment for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing and thus reduce dependency on disability-related income support programs. A longitudinal data set based upon records from the National Technical Institute for the Deaf and Social Security administrative records is used for this analysis. We find that those who graduate, even those who graduate with vocational degrees, experience significant earnings benefits and reductions in the duration of time spent on federal disability programs when compared with those who do not graduate with a degree. This finding suggests that reductions in the duration of time spent on Social Security programs are not limited to those with the highest level of scholastic aptitude and that investments in post-secondary education can benefit a broad group of deaf and hard-of-hearing persons. In addition, the data show that individuals who attend college, but withdraw before graduation, fair no better economically than individuals who never attended college.

Journal Article.  6449 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Education ; Linguistics ; Teaching of Specific Groups and Special Educational Needs

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