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How Does Education Relate to Job Fit and Job Satisfaction?

Researchers have suggested that education plays a large role in life satisfaction. It is hypothesized that educated people tend to make well-informed decisions—particularly when it comes to choosing employment. Research in Applied Psychology: An International Review explored whether or not this is true—whether job satisfaction plays a role on the path from education to life satisfaction. 

Job fit refers to how well employees believe that their skills, abilities, and education match their position. To assess fit, respondents were asked if they felt their education level, knowledge, and skills suited their work. The research revealed that there was a relationship between education and job fit. Likewise, there was a relationship between job fit and job satisfaction. Finally, job satisfaction contributed to overall life satisfaction. The research also revealed that although work, health, and financial well-being contributed to life satisfaction, they did so independently from one another. In other words, there was limited overlap; the effects individually contributed to life satisfaction. 

Another finding was that education and financial literacy had some small effects on job and life satisfaction. The researchers hypothesized that this is because of the social comparison process. In other words, people with more education tended to be less satisfied with their job than someone else might be with the same job with a lower level of education.

Ilies, R., Yao, J., Curseu, P. L., Liang, A. X. (2018). Educated and happy: A four-year study explaining the links between education, job fit, and life satisfaction. Applied Psychology: An International Review, (68)1, 150-176.