This research explores the effects of playing interscholastic sports on labor market income in the United States for males (n=5782) and females (n=6266) who participated in the National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988. Previous research has explored the effects of human capital and social capital on positive life outcomes for interscholastic athletes, but little research has looked into possible cultural capital advantages gained through interscholastic sports participation. Using multiple regression analysis and controlling for the effects of human and social capital, I examine whether participation in interscholastic sports operate as cultural capital. Results indicate that after net of controls the relationship between interscholastic sports participation and labor market income remains positive and significant for males who play sports and females who play the culturally popular sport of basketball. Results also indicate that those male student athletes who play culturally popular sports (football, basketball, or baseball) report more income six years after high school graduation than their counterparts who play a less culturally popular sport. This article provides evidence that cultural capital theory is a useful tool in exploring the relationship between interscholastic sports and labor market income.
College and Department
Family, Home, and Social Sciences; Sociology
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Linford, Matthew Kyle, "Understanding the Relationship Between Interscholastic Sports Participation and Labor Market Outcomes: Interscholastic Sports as Cultural Capital" (2009). Theses and Dissertations. 1954.
cultural capital, human capital, income, interscholastic sports, selection bias, social capital, sports participation