Using data from a 2005 nationally representative survey of working adults residing in the United States, we show that education is associated positively with a sense of personal control. The well-educated have higher status occupations which include higher levels of schedule control, challenging, interesting and enriching work, greater economic rewards and security, and a higher level of trust. Collectively, these patterns contribute substantially to the association between education and sense of control. We also observe that demanding work has a negative effect on sense of control, but this emerges only after adjusting for other higher status work conditions that correspond with demands. Our observations inform the integration of theoretical perspectives to describe education's benefits for personal and social functioning.

You do not currently have access to this article.