"Because at school, you can become somebody" - the perceived health and economic returns on secondary schooling in rural Burkina Faso

Werner, L. K. and Jabbarian, J. and Kagone, M. and McMahon, S. and Lemp, J. and Souares, A. and Fink, G. and De Neve, J.W.. (2019) "Because at school, you can become somebody" - the perceived health and economic returns on secondary schooling in rural Burkina Faso. PLoS ONE, 14 (12). e0226911.

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The perceived returns on schooling are critical in schooling decision-making but are not well understood. This study examines the perceived returns on secondary schooling in Burkina Faso, where secondary school completion is among the lowest globally (<10%).
We conducted a two-staged qualitative study using semi-structured interviews (N = 49). In the first stage, we sampled students, dropouts, parents and teachers from a random sample of five schools (n = 39). In the second stage, we interviewed key informants knowledgeable of the school context using snowball sampling (n = 10). Systematic analysis was based on a grounded theory approach with a reading of transcripts, followed by coding of the narratives in NVivo 12.
Respondents nearly universally perceived health benefits to schooling. In particular, key health benefits included improved sexual and reproductive health outcomes, hygiene knowledge and practices, as well as better interactions with the formal health system. Common economic returns on schooling included improved employment opportunities and the provision of support to family members, in addition to generally attaining success and recognition. Indirect and long-term health returns, however, were infrequently mentioned by respondents.
While respondents reported nearly universally short-term health benefits to schooling, responses with regard to economic as well as indirect and long-term health benefits were more ambiguous. Future intervention studies on the perceived returns on formal education are needed to inform policy and reach education and health targets in the region.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) > Household Economics and Health Systems Research > Epidemiology and Household Economics (Fink)
06 Faculty of Business and Economics > Departement Wirtschaftswissenschaften > Professuren Wirtschaftswissenschaften > Epidemiology and Household Economics (Fink)
UniBasel Contributors:Fink, G√ľnther
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Public Library of Science
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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edoc DOI:
Last Modified:05 Mar 2020 07:17
Deposited On:05 Mar 2020 07:17

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