This article analyzes the main approaches to study educational and occupational outcomes and trajectories. Young people have to decide when and what to study, later on, where to work. Their life levels will depend on those decisions, but the different ways that in both areas they are able to take and their outcomes in education and in the labor market depend on various factors. Among explications it is possible to identify six large approaches: human capital from economics, cultural and social capital from sociology, the socioeconomic status or familiar background approach and the educational and psychological approaches. These approaches are not contrary necessarily, they can be complementary, and their explanatory power depends on place and time, however, the literature does not have an effort to present together their contributions, methodologies and empirical results. This work seeks to remedy that situation and to point out some methodological and empirical weakness.