I believe you are going to want to have things split out into multiple tables as you've described. Everything in the user table, and don't name it user lest you want to spend your application's lifetime writing
[user], is going to result in every access to the database to hit one table. Imagine it's the lunch hour and everyone logs in to check their
SumanSpace social network site. .5M users all reading that user table at once and then you have people creating new accounts as well as updating their existing data. The less wide you can make that base table, the better as you're going to be able to stuff more entries in an 8k page.
Plus, things like updates to Education or Location won't need to lock the main user table which could cause contention. Those locks would be on, what I assume, are less frequently accessed tables.
Specific to your tables. Education - I would look to design it as 2 - 3 tables.
EducationType would be a lookup table describing the type of institution (grade school, middle school, junior high, high school, community college, military college, college, university, etc).
EducationLocation to associate an institute of learning with a physical space. Something to consider here are universities with multiple locations like DeVry-is there business value in building out a location hierarchy with the parent in Downer's Grove and then all the satellite campuses listed?
EducationObtained could be another lookup table, indicating the type of education obtained. For things less than the collegiate level, it'd have a value of graduated but the university level could have Bachelors, Masters, PhD, JD, Divinity (however abreviated) in Sciences, Arts, Fine Arts, etc. And of course, a cross reference table tying a user to their tenure (start and stop dates) at an institute.
Finally, you won't want an
INNER JOIN as people may not have or may not choose to record their education or location information.
Those are my top thoughts before I go and get cleaned up. I'm sure @DennyCherry has some insight into the matter based on his time at MySpace.