Popular Searches

The United States does not provide as much public funding as other developed nations to help
support young children’s care. According to a recent article, “The U.S. spends 0.2 percent of its
G.D.P. on childcare for children 2 and under — which amounts to about $200 a year for most
families, in the form of a once-a-year tax credit. …other wealthy countries in the Organization for
Economic Cooperation and Development spend an average of 0.7 percent of G.D.P. on toddlers, mainly through heavily subsidized childcare.”

The United States is an outlier regarding childcare when compared to other developed countries.
Across the nation, issues related to childcare increasingly cause economic and pragmatic problems for families. According to the Brookings Institution, “It now costs $310,600 to raise a
child from birth to age 18, a 9.1 percent increase from five years ago.”


In Wisconsin, common problems related to childcare include availability, waitlists, costs, staffing, and quality of service, and families often struggle to figure out their transportation, work schedules, finances, and other aftercare activities for the good of their children. Hardships related to childcare have led to significant declines in available workforce, birth rates, and deteriorating economic health in many regions across the state. Your challenge is to identify a significant problem related to the U.S. childcare industry, research and consider its various ramifications, and come up with an innovative federal or state solution that goes beyond what a private business might do to benefit its own employees. As you develop your project, be sure to contact and interview people, organizations, and pertinent groups so you can incorporate their insights.

Getting Started

Reference resources provide a starting point for your research projects.

Credo Reference

Credo Reference provides hundreds of encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauri, and more in one place. Below is a sample of keyword searches in Credo Reference related to this topic.

Call Numbers and Subject Headings

You can use the list of call numbers and subject headings below as keyword searches in our catalog and databases, or you can go to these sections of the library to find books on these topics.

  • HQ755.7 – 759.92
  • HQ767.8 – 792.2
  • Child care
  • Campus-based child care
  • Child-rearing
  • Children–institutional care
  • Health facility-based child care
  • School-age child care
  • School-based child care


These books are located in the Franzen Center

Work and the Well-Being of Poor Families with Children: When Work is not Enough / Ziegert, Andrea

Motherlands: How States Push Mothers Out of Employment / Ruppanner, Leah

Creating Equality at Home / Deutsch, Francine

Feminism’s Forgotten Fight / Swinth, Kirsten

Something’s Got to Give / Duxbury, Linda

Ain’t No Trust / Levine, Judith

Shadow Mothers / Macdonald, Cameron Lynne

The Childcare problem: an economic analysis / Blau, David M.

The Tragedy of Child Care in America / Zigler, Edward et. al.

Fathers, Childcare, and Work / Musumeci, Rosy

America’s Childcare Problem: The Way Out / Bergmann, Barbara



The following databases are useful places to search for articles. Contact a librarian if you would like more information on how to search for articles on your specific topic.

  • Academic Search Complete: Wide range of academic disciplines, including for scholarly and popular journals.
  • JSTOR– Full-text archive of scholarly journals in the arts and sciences. Issues from the past three to five years may not be available.
  • New York Times: Access to news and archival content from NY Times. If you run into a paywall, here is more information on how to sign up.
  • ProQuest Research Library: Includes both popular and scholarly periodicals covering a variety of subjects, with over 3300 titles available in full text.

Get articles from other libraries

If you cannot find a full-text version of the article you need, request it through interlibrary loan. Interlibrary loan is a free service that allows you to borrow books and articles from other libraries. Find answers to frequently asked questions about ILL here.

Government Sources

Wisconsin Department of Children and Families: The Department of Children and Families (DCF) provides or oversees county administration of programs to assist children and families.

Administration for Children and Families The Administration for Children & Families (ACF), a division of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS), promotes the economic and social well-being of families, children, youth, individuals and communities with funding, strategic partnerships, guidance, training and technical assistance.

childcare.gov ChildCare.gov helps parents access safe and quality child care services in their community that best suits their family’s needs. ChildCare.gov provides links to State or Territory child care websites that parents use to search for child care and consumer education information.

Andrew Prellwitz

Prellwitz, Andrew

Librarian-User Services and Director of Lane Library

[email protected]