What is the Economic Value of Community College Degrees and Certificates?

21 Mar 2016

In a blog article recently posted to PACE’s website, CLP’s Director of Research Mina Dadgar synthesized her recent study conducted in collaboration with Madeline Joy Trimble of Columbia University. By analyzing the economic benefits of certificates in the labor market the study estimates the relationship between earning a certificate and student earnings and employment post graduation.

“Our findings have several policy implications. First, given their labor market value, investing in community college credentials should be a priority for all states. Second, states should invest in Associate Degrees and Long-Term Certificates which have substantial value, even though they are more expensive to offer than Short-Term Certificates.”

The full study is in Dadgar, Mina, and Madeline Joy Trimble, Labor Market Returns to Sub-Baccalaureate Credentials: How Much Does a Community College Degree or Certificate Pay? Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis December 2015 vol. 37 no. 4 399-418; an ungated version is available here.

Visit PACE’s website for more information.