High School Graduates include persons 25 years old and over whose highest degree was a high school diploma or its equivalent. People who reported completing the 12th grade but not receiving a diploma are not included. Persons with a Bachelor's Degree or Higher are those 25 years old and over who have received a bachelor's degree from a college or university, or a master's, professional, or doctorate degree.
The connection between education and income is strong. A high school diploma, technical college certificate, or college degree not only increases one’s skills and productivity, but signals to employers that the individual is motivated and completes tasks. A more educated individual is more likely to participate in the job market, to have a job, to work more hours, and to be paid more, and less likely to be unemployed. But the benefits of education go beyond the economic returns. Higher levels of education also correspond to improved health and lower rates of mortality, and lower rates of crime.[23, 25, 26, 27]