The Korean Journal of Economic Studies
Can Academic Credentials Determine Life Satisfaction?: The Estimates on the Non-monetary Effects of
Young-Chul Kim (Sangmyung University)Year 2016Vol. 64No. 1
The excessive hierarchy of colleges has generated the overheatedcompetition for college entrance in South Korea. Many preceding studiesdiscussed the effect of academic credentials on the labor market such as wagepremium for graduates from prestigious universities, but few have conductedcomprehensive research embracing their non-monetary effects. Using theKorean Labor & Income Panel Study (KLIPS) dataset, this study finds strongpositive effects of academic backgrounds on both overall life and workplacesatisfaction levels. The satisfaction effects are supported by the differentexperience of discrimination in employment, promotion and general social lifeaccording to different educational backgrounds. We also find that the effectsare statistically significant even after controlling for one’s income and job type.