Required Reading


Reading is a requirement in order to complete your training and obtain certification. The number of books you must read is dependent on which program you are enrolled in, so be sure to check the appropriate training page to find out how many you must read. Books marked with an asterisk (*) are required, while unmarked books are suggested. CAPPA suggests you read books on the subjects you are least familiar with. Many of the books listed below can be purchased in our shop.

Labor Doula  Postpartum Doula   Childbirth Educator

Lactation Educator  Pregnancy Fitness Educator

Labor Doula

You are required to read a minimum of five books in addition to the CAPPA Labor Doula manual. Optimally, you should read at least one book from each section. Always check to make certain you are reading the most current edition of each book.

  • CAPPA Labor Doula manual (included at training) *

Doula Studies & History of Birth:

  • The Doula Advantage – Rachel Gurevich
  • Special Women – Paulina Perez
  • The Doula Book – Klaus, Klaus, Kennell
  • Birth as an American Rite of Passage – Robbie Davis-Floyd
  • Birth – Tina Cassidy
  • Birth Matters – Ina May Gaskin
  • Round the Circle – Julie Brill

Labor Support Skills:

  • The Nurturing Touch at Birth – Paulina Perez
  • The Birth Partner – Penny Simkin
  • The Labor Progress Handbook 4th edition – Penny Simkin, Ruth Ancheta
  • The New Active Birth, Revised Edition – Janet Balaskas
  • Easing Labor Pain – Adrienne Lieberman
  • Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth – Ina May Gaskin
  • Fathers at Birth – Rose St. John
  • Labor Pain: A Natural Approach to Easing Delivery – Nicky Wesson
  • Mindful Birthing – Nancy Bardacke

Pregnancy & Birth:

  • The Greatest Pregnancy Ever – Laurel Wilson, Tracy Wilson Peters
  • The Attachment Pregnancy – Laurel Wilson, Tracy Wilson Peters
  • Pregnancy, Childbirth & the Newborn – Simkin, Whalley, Kepler
  • Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering – Sarah J. Buckley, MD
  • Optimal Care in Childbirth – Henci Goer & Amy Romano
  • You Best Birth – Ricki Lake
  • A Good Birth, A Safe Birth – Diana Korte & Roberta Scaer
  • Gentle Birth Choices – Barbara Harper
  • The Mother Of All Pregnancy Books – Ann Douglas
  • Healthy Beginnings – Giving your baby the best start from preconception to birth – The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada

Breastfeeding:

  • The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers – Dr. Jack Newman & Teresa Pitman
  • Dr. Jack Newman’s Guide To Breastfeeding, Revised Edition)
  • The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding – La Leche League International
  • Breastfeeding Made Simple – Nancy Morbacher & Kathleen Kendall-Tacket
  • Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding – Ina May Gaskin

Special Situations:

  • The VBAC Companion – Diana Korte
  • When Hello Means Goodbye – Kirk & Schweibert
  • Ghostbelly – Elizabeth Heineman
  • When Survivors Give Birth – Penny Simkin
  • Survivor Moms – Mickey Sperlich & Julia Seng
  • Companioning at a Time of Perinatal Loss – Jane Heustis, RN, Marcia Jenkins, RN

Postpartum Doula

Please choose books from each of the following categories. You will need to read a total of 11 books, including the Training Manual and See What You Read Booklet.

CATEGORY 1: GENERAL READING (ALL Students must read BOTH of these booklets)

  • CAPPA Postpartum Doula Manual (provided at training)
  • See What You Read: Mother and New Baby Care booklet available in the CAPPA Store

 CATEGORY 2: THE NEW MOTHER & FAMILY (choose 1 from this category)

  • Mothering the New Mother, 2nd Edition by Sally Placksin
  • Nurturing the Family: The Guide for Postpartum Doulas by Jacqueline Kelleher
  • The Gentle Art of Newborn Family Care by Salle Webber
  • The Mommy Plan by Valerie Lynn
  • Maternity Leave: A New Mother’s Guide to the First Six Weeks Postpartum by Cheryl R. Zauderer
  • Nurturing Beginnings Guide to Postpartum Care for Doulas and Community Outreach Workers by Debra Pascali-Bonaro and Jane Arnold with Marcia Ringel

CATEGORY 3: THE NEWBORN (choose 2 from this category):

  • The Baby Book by Drs. William and Martha Sears
  • Heading Home with Your Newborn from Birth to Reality by Laura A. Jana and Jennifer Shu
  • Gentle Baby Care: No-cry, No-fuss, No-worry–Essential Tips for Raising Your Baby by Elizabeth Pantley
  • The Mother of All Baby Books by Ann Douglas
  • Your Baby and Child: From Birth to Age Five by Penelope Leach
  • Your Baby is Speaking to You by Kevin Nugent
  • Your Amazing Newborn by Marshall Klaus
  • Touchpoints: Birth to Three by T. Berry Brazelton
  • Brain Rules for Baby by John Medina

 CATEGORY 4: BREASTFEEDING (choose 1 from this category)

  • The Nursing Mother’s Companion, 6th Edition by Kathleen Huggins
  • The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers  by Dr. Jack Newman & Teresa Pitman
  • Breastfeeding Made Simple by Kathleen Kendall-Tackett, Nancy Mohrbacher, and Dr. Jack Newman
  • Breastfeeding Solutions: Quick Tips for the Most Common Nursing Challenges By Nancy Mohrbacher
  • Working and Breastfeeding Made Simple by Nancy Mohrbacher

 CATEGORY 5: POSTPARTUM MOOD DISORDERS (choose 1 from this category)

  • This Isn’t What I Expected: Overcoming Postpartum Depression by Karen Kleiman & Valerie Rasking
  • Beyond the Blues: A Guide to Understanding and Treating Prenatal and Postpartum Depression by Shoshana S. Bennett
  • Depression in New Mothers by Kathleen Kendall-Tackett
  • I’m Listening by Jane Honikman

 CATEGORY 6: Special Circumstances (choose 2 from this category)

  • Mothering Multiples: Breastfeeding and Caring for Twins or More! 3rd Edition by Karen Kerkoff Gromada (La Leche League International)
  • Twinspiration by Cheryl Lange
  • Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Twins by Dr Marc Weissbluth
  • How to Survive Twins: Your Definitive Guide to The First 6 Months by Carol Malone and Steve Malone
  • The Premature Baby Book by Dr William Sears
  • Preemies – Second Edition: The Essential Guide for Parents of Premature Babies by Dana Wechsler Linden, Emma Trenti Paroli, Mia Wechsler Doron
  • The Essential C-Section Guide: Pain Control, Healing at Home, Getting Your Body Back, and Everything Else You Need to Know About a Cesarean Birth by Maureen Connolly and Dana Sullivan
  • Strategies for the C-Section Mom: A Complete Fitness, Nutrition, and Lifestyle Guide by Mary Beth Knight

CATEGORY 7: BONDING and RELATIONSHIPS (choose 1 from this category)

  • The Earliest Relationship by T. Berry Brazelton & Bertrand Cramer
  • Bonding by Marshall Klaus, John Kennell, and Phyllis Klaus
  • The Attachment Pregnancy by Tracy Wilson Peters and Laurel Wilson
  • Becoming Us: 8 Steps to Grow a Family That Thrives by Elly Taylor

 CATEGORY 8: CALMING, SOOTHING, INFANT SLEEP (choose 1 from this category)

  • The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Newborns by Elizabeth Pantley
  • Sweet Sleep by Diane Wiessinger, Diana West, Linda J. Smith, Teresa Pittman
  • Sleeping with Your Baby: A Parent’s Guide to Co-Sleeping by James J. McKenna
  • Baby Calm: A Guide for Parents on Sleep Techniques, Feeding Schedules, and Bonding with Your New Baby by Sarah Ockwell-Smith

Childbirth Educator

In addition to the CAPPA Childbirth Education Manual, you must read:
One selection from this list on Public Speaking:

  • Present Like a Pro (Maxey & O’Conner)
  • The Exceptional Presenter (Koegel)
  • Presenting to Win (Weissman)
  • Speak Up!: A woman’s guide to presenting like a pro (Maxey & O’Conner)

One selection from this list on Adult Learning Principles:

  • How Learning Works: Seven Researched Based Principles for Smart Teaching (Ambrose, Bridges, DiPietro, Lovett, Norman and Mayer)
  • Planning Programs for Adult Learners (Caffarella)
  • Learning in Adulthood (Merriam, Caffarella, Baumgartner)
  • Understanding and Promoting Transformative Learning (Cranton)
  • Enhancing Adult Motivation to Learn (Wlodkowski)

One selection from this list on Breastfeeding:

  • Breastfeeding Made Simple: Seven Natural Laws for Nursing Mothers (Nancy Mohrbacher & Kathleen Kendall-Tackett)
  • The Ultimate Breastfeeding Book of Answers (Dr. Jack Newman)
  • The Nursing Mother’s Companion (Kathleen Huggins)
  • The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (La Leche League International)

One selection from this list on Pregnancy, Labor and Birth:

  • Pregnancy, Childbirth, & the Newborn (Penny Simkin)
  • The Complete Book of Pregnancy & Childbirth (Sheila Kitzinger)
  • Our Bodies, Ourselves: Pregnancy and Birth (The Boston Women’s Health Book Collective)

Three (3) selections from this list of other recommended titles:

  • The Greatest Pregnancy Ever (Laurel Wilson and Tracy Wilson Peters)
  • Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth (Ina May Gaskin)
  • Birth as an American Rite of Passage – Robbie Davis-Floyd
  • Birth – Tina Cassidy
  • Gentle Birth Choices (Barbara Harper)
  • Gentle Birth, Gentle Mothering (Dr. Sarah Buckly)
  • The Birth Book (Sears & Sears)
  • The Nurturing Touch at Birth (Paulina Perez)
  • When Hello Means Goodbye (Kirk & Schwiebert)
  • A Good Birth, A Safe Birth (Diana Korte & Roberta Scaer)
  • The VBAC Companion (Diana Korte)
  • Nutrition for a Healthy Pregnancy (Elizabeth Somer)

Lactation Educator

Lactation Certification Candidates must read the following:

Required to read:

  • CAPPA lactation educator manual (included at training) *

Required to read one of the following texts** and 4 Self Select Books OR Two Texts** and 0 *Self Select Books:

  • **Breastfeeding and Human Lactation by Jan Riordan
  • **Counseling the Nursing Mother by Lauwers and Swisher
  • **Breastfeeding Answers Made Simple by Mohrbacher

*Self Select List

  • Breastfeeding Made Simple: Seven Natural Laws for Nursing Mothers by Mohrbacher and KendallTackett
  • The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding by La Leche League International
  • Defining Your Own Success: Breastfeeding After Breast Reduction Surgery by Diana West
  • Birth & Breastfeeding by Michel Odent
  • Breastfeeding an Adopted Baby and Relactation by La Leche League International
  • Mothering Multiples: Breastfeeding and Caring for Twins and More by Karen Kerkoff Gromada
  • Mothering Your Nursing Toddler by Norma Jane Bumgarner
  • The Nursing Mother’s Guide to Weaning by Kathleen Huggins and Linda Ziedrich
  • Supporting Sucking Skills in Breastfeeding Infants by Genna Watson
  • Impact of Birthing Practices on Breastfeeding by Linda J. Smith and Mary Kroeger
  • Sweet Sleep by Diane Weissinger, Diana West, Linda J. Smith
  • Balancing Breast and Bottle: Reaching Your Breastfeeding Goals by Amy Peterson and Mindy Harmer
  • Clinics in Human Lactation: Breastfeeding the Late Preterm Infant by Marsha Walker
  • Clinics in Human Lactation: Pumps & Pumping Protocols by Marsha Walker
  • Clinics in Human Lactation: Emotional and Physical Trauma by Dianne Cassidy
  • Clinics in Human Lactation: Clinics in Human Lactation: Non-Pharmacologic Treatments for Depression in New Mothers by Kathleen Kendall-Tackett

Recommended Books for Further Education

  • Coach’s Notebook: Games & Strategies for Lactation Education by Linda J. Smith
  • The Breastfeeding Atlas by Barbara Wilson-Clay and Kay Hoover
  • Medications & Mother’s Milk by Thomas Wright Hale, R.Ph. Ph.D.

Pregnancy Fitness Educator

Please use the most recent version of each book listed.
Required Reading

  • Pregnancy Fitness Educator Manual (provided by CAPPA at the time of enrollment)
  • The Female Pelvis : Anatomy & Exercises (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • Choose 1 from the following list:
  • Active Birth, Revised Edition (Janet Balaskas)
  • Expecting Fitness (Birgitta Gallo)
  • Easy Exercises for Pregnancy (Janet Balaskas)
  • Exercising through your pregnancy (James F.Clapp)
  • Motherwell Maternity Fitness Plan (Bonnie Berk)

Choose 1 from the following list:

  • Nutrition for a Healthy Pregnancy (Elizabeth Somer)
  • Nutrition in Pregnancy & Lactation (Worthington-Roberts, Vermeesch, & Williams)

Choose any 2 from the following:

  • The Birth Book (Sears & Sears)
  • Pregnancy, Childbirth, & the Newborn 4th Edition 2010 (Penny Simkin)
  • The Complete Book of Pregnancy & Childbirth (Sheila Kitzinger)
  • The Thinking Woman’s Guide to a Better Birth (Henci Goer)
  • Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth (Ina May Gaskin)
  • The VBAC Companion (Diana Korte)
  • Preventing Preterm Birth (Michael Katz)
  • Every Pregnant Woman’s Guide to Preventing Premature Birth (Barbara Luke)
  • The Pregnancy Bed Rest Book (Amy E. Tracy)
  • Mind Over Labor (Carl Jones)
  • Easing Labor Pain (Adrienne Lieberman)
  • The Labor Progress Handbook (Penny Simkin)

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