Volume 14 - Article 17 | Pages 405-428

Changes in educational assortative mating in contemporary Spain

By Albert Esteve Palós, Clara Cortina

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Date received:08 Sep 2005
Date published:18 May 2006
Word count:4699
Keywords:2001 Census, assortative mating, educational attainment, marriage, Spain


This article analyses patterns and trends in educational assortative mating of the Spanish women born between 1920 and 1969 using data from the 2001 Spanish Census. By means of loglinear models we examine the following issues: i) intensity and changes in educational assortative mating patterns; ii) crossing barriers across educational thresholds and iii) degree of symmetry between male and female patterns.
Results show that education matters in the composition of unions: people tend to marry assortatively according to their education. However this pattern clearly differs across cohorts and between educational groups, being higher for the extreme categories. The most notable trends are 1) the increasing intensity of homogamy among the more educated and 2) the incipient extinction of the traditional female hypergamic pattern.

Author's Affiliation

Albert Esteve Palós - Center for Demographic Studies (Barcelona), Spain [Email]
Clara Cortina - Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain [Email]

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» Disentangling how educational expansion did not increase women's age at union formation in Latin America from 1970 to 2000
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