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Author: Gifford, Kirk D.
Resulting in 3 citations.
1. Gifford, Kirk D.
Signaling in the Market for GED Graduates: Empirical Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth
Ph.D. Dissertation, Washington State University, 1996
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: UMI - University Microfilms, Bell and Howell Information and Learning
Keyword(s): Continuing Education; Education, Secondary; GED/General Educational Diploma/General Equivalency Degree/General Educational Development; Human Capital; Labor Market Outcomes; Quits; Retirement; Self-Employed Workers; Tests and Testing; Training, On-the-Job

The General Educational Development (GED) is becoming increasingly popular as a means to high school certification. As sponsor of the GED, the American Council on Education markets a GED credential as equivalent to a diploma obtained through the traditional high school route. The council suggests that GED graduates are comparable to high school graduates in terms of higher educational and vocational success. Recent economic research has generated considerable controversy over this claimed equivalency. This dissertation develops a game theoretical, signaling model that describes the market for high school credentials and empirically tests the model to investigate the differences between the labor market outcomes of traditional high school students and the labor market outcomes of GED credentialed individuals. The data for the empirical analysis come from 1979-93 waves of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY). Standard regression analysis is used, with corrections for existing selection biases. I find evidence to suggest that GED test takers are a heterogenous group. Those who take the exam shortly after dropping out of high school, signal high ability to the market and are paid a high wage, while those who take the exam later in life are paid a lower wage. Specifically, examining a sample of NLSY females, I find that those who take the GED early have comparable wages and work slightly more than those who graduate from a traditional high school. A sample of NLSY males suggests that early GED test takers do not fare as well as their high school counterparts, but do better than dropouts who don't take the exam. For males, these age-at-examination-date effects are eliminated when I correct for selection bias, suggesting that the GED is not an investment in human capital, but acts purely as a signal of ability and motivation. Conversely, the distinction between signaling and human capital development is not as clear for females.
Bibliography Citation
Gifford, Kirk D. Signaling in the Market for GED Graduates: Empirical Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Ph.D. Dissertation, Washington State University, 1996.
2. Leigh, Duane E.
Gifford, Kirk D.
Workplace Transformation and Worker Upskilling Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth
Working Paper, Department of Economics, Washington State University, April 1996
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: Department of Economics, Washington State University
Keyword(s): Education; Firm Size; Occupations; Skill Depreciation; Skilled Workers; Skills; Training, Occupational; Training, On-the-Job; Transfers, Skill

How common is workplace transformation in the American economy? What are its implications for workforce skill requirements and training investments? The existing literature addresses these questions using firm-reported survey data. Using new data available in the 1993 wave of the NLSY, this paper examines these questions from the perspective of individual workers. Our empirical results suggest that workplace transformation is commonplace. Fully 40 percent of the private sector workers surveyed report that, in the space of just one year. a change occurred at work that was significant enough to require them to learn new job skills. The extent of workplace change varies widely by industry, occupation, firm size, and education; but there appears to be no sector of the economy that is totally immune. Incidence of formal training is found, not surprisingly given the measurement of workplace change, to depend on a similar set of variables. However, duration of training is also strongly affected by such factors as industry, occupational skill level, establishment size, and education. We also present results on the determinants of formal training broken down by computer skills, teamwork training, and basic skills. I folding constant worker and firm characteristics, computer skills training is especially strongly affected by firm investment in new equipment; while new government regulations and new equipment are key determinants of teamwork training and basic skills training.
Bibliography Citation
Leigh, Duane E. and Kirk D. Gifford. "Workplace Transformation and Worker Upskilling Evidence from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth." Working Paper, Department of Economics, Washington State University, April 1996.
3. Leigh, Duane E.
Gifford, Kirk D.
Workplace Transformation and Worker Upskilling: The Perspective of Individual Workers
Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society 38,2 (April 1999): 174-191.
Also: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/0019-8676.00123/abstract
Cohort(s): NLSY79
Publisher: Institute of Industrial Relations, University of California, Berkeley
Keyword(s): Job Training; Skills; Training; Training, Employee

Permission to reprint the abstract has not been received from the publisher.

How common is workplace transformation in the American economy? What are its implications for work force skill requirements and training investments? The existing literature addressing these questions is based on firm-reported survey data. Using new data available in the 1993 wave of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY), this article examines the same questions from the perspective of individual workers. Our empirical results suggest that workplace transformation is commonplace. Fully 40 percent of private-sector workers surveyed report that in the space of just one year, a change occurred at work that required them to learn new job skills. About 23 percent of all respondents reported experiencing a workplace change we term an organizational transformation. Incidence of formal training is positively related to indicators of organizational transformation, but the effect of these indicators is found to be sensitive to the inclusion of other important workplace change variables (namely, new products, new equipment, and new government regulations). While we expected to find strong positive relationships with product development and physical capital investment, government regulation has a surprisingly large impact on formal training.
Bibliography Citation
Leigh, Duane E. and Kirk D. Gifford. "Workplace Transformation and Worker Upskilling: The Perspective of Individual Workers." Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society 38,2 (April 1999): 174-191.