Document Type

Thesis - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Human Development, Consumer and Family Sciences


This study examined parents' perceptions of quality home based child care in South Dakota. Perceptions of quality included how the provider interacts with the children, if they are registered in the state of South Dakota, how many children they have at one time, health and safety, and cost of care. This study was conducted to see if there are parental perceptual differences of East River (any land/area east of the Missouri River in South Dakota) and of West River (any land/area west of the Missouri River in South Dakota) cultures in regards to home based child care quality characteristics. Implications were that there are differences between the East River and the West River cultures due to the characteristics that make up the towns and people, and their beliefs about child care. The proposed study also examined whether there are differences or similarities in parents' views of quality care based on registered and non-registered care. Implications were that registered child care will be perceived as having better quality. The proposal was examined through Symbolic Interaction Theory, looking at parents' views of quality in child care. A survey was administered to parents who have children in home based child care. The parents' survey measured characteristics that add to their views of quality child care. Both registered and non-registered home based child care sites were selected. Null hypotheses were that there is no significant difference in the quality of care between East River and West River and there is no significant difference between registered and non-registered child care. Research hypotheses were that quality child care characteristics at the East River sites will be more highly regarded in the views of parents and parents who use non-registered child care will have less characteristics of quality in their views.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Child care -- South Dakota Parents -- South Dakota -- Attitudes



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University