Child & Youth Care Forum

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 129–150

A Comparative Study of Structural and Process Quality in Center-Based and Family-Based Child Care Services

  • Nathalie Bigras
  • Caroline Bouchard
  • Gilles Cantin
  • Liesette Brunson
  • Sylvain Coutu
  • Lise Lemay
  • Mélissa Tremblay
  • Christa Japel
  • Annie Charron
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10566-009-9088-4

Cite this article as:
Bigras, N., Bouchard, C., Cantin, G. et al. Child Youth Care Forum (2010) 39: 129. doi:10.1007/s10566-009-9088-4

Abstract

This study seeks to determine whether center-based and family-based child care services differ with respect to process quality, as measured by the Educative Quality Observation Scales (EQOS, Bourgon and Lavallée 2004a, b, c), for groups of children 18 months old and younger. It also seeks to identify structural variables associated with process quality in these settings. The study included two types of regulated child care settings located in the greater Montreal area (center-based: N = 53 and family-based: N = 36). Results indicate that process quality was lower in family-based child care than in center-based child care for the majority of elements measured by the EQOS. Hierarchical regression analyses indicate that higher levels of process quality were associated with structural variables, including a lower adult-child ratio, the presence of more staff with specialized early childhood education training, and center-based care. The discussion focuses on strategies to improve these types of child care services.

Keywords

Process qualityStructural qualityCenter-based child careFamily-based child careInfant

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nathalie Bigras
    • 1
  • Caroline Bouchard
    • 1
  • Gilles Cantin
    • 1
  • Liesette Brunson
    • 2
  • Sylvain Coutu
    • 3
  • Lise Lemay
    • 1
  • Mélissa Tremblay
    • 2
  • Christa Japel
    • 4
  • Annie Charron
    • 1
  1. 1.Département d’éducation et pédagogieUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontrealCanada
  2. 2.Département de psychologieUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontrealCanada
  3. 3.Département de psychoéducation et psychologieUniversité du Québec en OutaouaisGatineauCanada
  4. 4.Département d’éducation et formation spécialiséeUniversité du Québec à MontréalMontrealCanada