Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date



In recognition of the critical role libraries play in the educational lives of parenting students, there has been a noticeable trend in academic libraries to offer services and spaces for students and their children. This article reviews recent LIS literature on student parent initiatives in academic libraries, with the emphasis on the United States. The purpose of this synthesis is to highlight demographic data, research findings, and case studies that, considered together, may significantly expand the profession’s knowledge about the barriers parenting students face in accessing the library and its services. The first part of the article lays out the rationale and urgency of providing library services and spaces to students with dependent children. The second half is a summary of the existing LIS literature on parent students. To enable individual libraries to undertake their own family-friendly initiatives, this section’s formal organization mirrors the stages and steps identified by scholars and practitioners as necessary to design and implement successful policies, spaces, and services for student parents.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.