Mature Women Training Questions

Training questions were fielded during all survey years except 1968, 1974, 1976, and 1992. The 1967 survey collected information on the training experiences of each respondent during high school and since her regular schooling ended, and on the types of professional or trade certification ever received. Subsequent surveys updated this training and certification record, added both on-the-job training and apprenticeship as categories in the training type/training provider series, and gathered information on the future educational and training plans of the respondents.

The 1967 survey collected information on whether the respondent had been enrolled during high school in a vocational or commercial curriculum and whether, since attending regular school, she had ever participated in a full-time company training program of two or more weeks duration; in other technical or skill training; or additional general training in such courses as English, math, science, or art. Information was gathered for each program on the type of training (professional/technical, managerial, clerical, skilled manual, or general courses); length of and hours per week spent in the training program; completion status; whether the skills acquired were used on the current job; and whether this training had ever been used on a job. In addition, the 1967 survey fielded questions on the respondent's plans to enroll in educational or training courses in the future, whether a certificate had ever been obtained to practice any profession or trade, and, if so, the type (professional [teacher, nurse, etc.] or trade [beautician, etc.]).

A series of variables created from these data summarized--for the longest training program in which the respondent had been enrolled outside of regular school--the characteristic information on each program described above. Another variable coupled the type of training with whether the training was completed. This latter variable was created once again with the 1972 data.

The next four personal interviews (1969, 1971, 1972, and 1977) updated the respondent's record with additional training courses or educational programs in which she participated and/or any new diplomas, degrees, and certificates acquired since the last interview. The 1972 questionnaire repeated the 1967 series on the respondent's plans to seek additional training in the future. Created variables included 'Type and Duration of Longest Occupational Training Program' since 1967 (1969 interview) and since 1967 and 1969 (1971 interview); coding distinguished between programs of "less than 16 weeks" and "16 weeks or more."

Questions about on-the-job training (OJT) and/or other training or educational programs in which the respondent had participated since the last interview were featured in the 1979-89 and 1995-2003 surveys. For each OJT program in which the respondent was enrolled, information was collected on the number of weeks enrolled, hours participated per week, and program completion.

The second training series in the 1979-89 and 1995-2003 surveys continued to record the same type of information as in earlier surveys with the following exceptions/changes:

  1. New coding categories were added to the sponsor/provider questions that included apprenticeship beginning in 1981 and community organizations beginning in 1984.
  2. In 1984, a government agency category was added that was intended to reflect training programs operated by CETA, JTPA, or other manpower programs.
  3. The coding categories for the type of certification series shifted for the 1979 survey only to professional/technical, managerial, etc.
  4. Beginning with the 1981 survey, the certification coding categories included: certificate, license, journeyman's card, or other.
  5. The 1984 and subsequent surveys added two questions, one on the reason the respondent took the other training program and the second on the kind of work for which she was being trained; the 1995-2003 surveys also asked if the program was required by the respondent's employer.
  6. Finally, a question on whether the other training program was part of an apprenticeship program was added to the 1987 and 1989 questionnaires; this question supplemented apprenticeship as a coding category in the provider type series.

Table MW1 presents by survey year and race the numbers of respondents participating in on-the-job and other vocational training programs during 1979-97. Because the universe of respondents asked these questions was different in 1999-2003, those years are not included in the table.

Table MW1. Numbers of Mature Women Respondents Participating in Training Programs by Type of Training and Race: 1979-97

Year On-the-Job Training Other Vocational Training1
Total Non-black Black Total Non-black Black
1979 341 265 76 284 238 46
1981 422 326 96 300 257 43
1982 327 245 82 193 164 29
1984 358 281 77 236 200 36
1986 354 284 70 206 173 33
1987 273 231 42 155 133 22
1989 313 250 63 151 122 29
1995 167 129 38 88 74 14
1997 105 82 23 67 54 13
Note: This table is based on R00023.00 (race), R04836.00, R04845.00, R05211.00, R05215.00, R06507.00, R06511.00, R07132.00, R07136.00, R07741.00, R07745.00, R08680.00, R08684.00, R09913.00, R09917.00, R34786.00, R34795.00, R41948.00, and R41957.00.
1 The 1987 and 1989 surveys asked whether the other training program was part of an apprenticeship program. Small numbers of respondents reported participation in this type of training.

Survey Instruments & Documentation: The "Education & Training" or "Education" sections of the questionnaires contain the training questions. Appendix 6 and Appendix 7 (PDFs) in the Codebook Supplement contain derivations for the constructed 'Type & Completion of Training Prior to 67' and 'Type & Completion of Occupational Training Taken 67-72' summary variables.


Bureau of Labor Statistics. Work and Family: Never Too Old to Learn. Report No. 856. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Labor, 1993.
Parnes, Herbert S., et al. Dual Careers: A Longitudinal Study of Labor Market Experience of Women. Manpower Research Monograph No. 21. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1970.

Shaw, Lois B. "Effects of Education and Occupational Training on the Wages of Mature Women." Columbus, OH: Center for Human Resource Research, The Ohio State University, 1983.