As the trend toward an awake and aware childbirth experience accelerates, the demand for childbirth preparation courses has increased. Parent and Child, one of four volunteer organizations offering prepared childbirth courses in the Washington area, taught 1,700 couples in 1976 and nearly 3,000 in 1977.

"The number of couples we can serve is limited only by our own capacity. We're looking for new locations for teaching sites in order to accommodate the demand, which seems to inccrease 25 to 30 per cent a year,' said Iris Cross, chairman of Parent and Child's board of directors.

Courses in childbirth preparation usually are taken during the eighth month of pregnancy. However, because of the demand, early registration is advised.

The guide below lists groups and institutions providing childbirth courses or supportive services for expectant parents, the type of service and the fees charged.

Alexandria Hospital, 4320 Seminary Road, call 370-9000, ext 333, Tuesdays between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. A general course including a tour of the hospital plus information on anesthesia, labor and delivery, post partum recovery, breast feeding and preparing for a baby. Four sessions, not limited to prospective patients. Classes are taught by staff nurses. Fee is $20 for the full set of four classes. A refresher course is offered for $10.

Arlington Hospital, 1701 North George Mason Drive; 558-6371. Childbirth Education Association courses held at hospital (see guide below). Arlington also has its own Preparation for CHildbirth and Parenthood class covering physiological, psychological and socio-economic aspects of pregnancy, labor, infant care and some breathing exercises. Fee is $10, with scholarships available. Course is scholarships available. Course is taught by staff nurses.

American Red Cross, 401 Duke St., Alexandria, 549-8300, and 4333 Arlington Blvd., Arlington, 527-3010, and 4117 Chain Bridge Road, Fairfax, 591-8091. Series of seven courses covering comfort measures for women during pregnancy, supplies and equipment for newborns, growth and development to the fetus, labor and delivery and what to expect during the first year. Classes are tarught by nurses. No fee. Red Cross certificte given upon completion of course. Classes held at following locations: Hecht's department stores, Landmark Shopping Center, 354-1900, and Parkington Shopping Center, 524-5100 ext. 201. For classes at Hecht's, Tyson's Corner, call Fairfax Red Cross to register. Classes also held at Woodward and Lothrop department store at Landmark Shopping Center 832-0318.

A.S.P.O. (American Society for Psychorprophylaxis in Obstertirics), regional mailing address, 4401 Cathedral Ave. NW, Washington, D.C. 20016; 587-2230. A non-profit volunteer organiation. Series of six classes on the Lamaze method of prepared childbirth, covering breathing and relaxing techniques, physical exercises for different stages of labor, coaching techniques and nutrition. Teachers have special Lamaze training and 95 per cent are registered nurses. Some courses have seventh meeting on breast feeding. Evening classes meet at teachers' homes in Northern Virginia area. Fees are $40, but scholarshiops are available.

Birthright, 30 South Quaker Lane, Alexandria, 370-4774, and 109 Park Ave., Falls Church, 536-202. A non-profit volunteer organization geared to aiding prospective mothers whose pregnancies are causing social or economic problems. Alexandria office has prenatal courses on an individual basis, geared to each woman's needs. Ne fees; taught by childbirth preparation, techers. Falls Church office has series of three classes on prental care which cover nutrition, exercise and care of the baby. Classes are held at the office every other month, the first three Wednesday evenings of each month. No fees. Classes taught by nurses.

Bloomingdales Tyson's COrner, 893-3500 ext. 215. Three-part course in conjunction with Arlington Hospital. June Breen, an obstetrical nurse from Arlington Hospital, discusses problems that occur in pregnancy, psychological supports, emotional and physical changes and the approaches of various hospitals. No fee. Course taught in training room at the store.

Cesarean Families Association, mailing address, 5110 North 25th Road, Arlington, 569-0554; class registration, 880-1305. A non-profit volunteer organlization. Four-session course covering anatomy and physiology of late pregnancy and labor, hospital procedures, breast feeding, physical and emotional adjustments to a Cesarean delivery and a film of a Cesarean delivery and a film of a Cesarean delivery with the father in the delivery room. Classes meet once a month in homes of members, alternating between locations in Northern Virginia and suburban Maryland. Teachers are registered nurses who have had Cesarean deliveries. Fees are $20 for non-members, $14 for members. Membership fee is $6.

Childbirth Education Association, regional mailing address, Box 5078, Alexandria, 22305, 322-1555. A non-profit volunteer organization. Six-session course based on Lamaze method of childbirth, covering breathing exercises, comfort measures for pregnancy, emergency childbirth, breast feeding, post partum adjustment. Classes are taught by registered nurses who have had Lamaze deliveries. Evening classes are held in churces, schools, hospitals and other public facilities in Northern Virginia. Free orientaiton class at 8 p.m., second and fourth Mondays of each month, Thomas Jefferson Library, 7415 Arlington Blvd., Falls Church. Fees are review session for parents who have taken courses previously; scholarships available. CEA also has three post birth mother's groups.

Fairfax Hospital, 3300 Gallows Road, 698-3410 from 6 to 7 p.m. Tuesday or Wednesdays. Five-week course slanted toward Fairfax Hospital procedures. Course covers physiology of pregnancy and labor, anesthesia, techniques of relaxation and breathing, post delivery care of mother and baby, breast and bottle feeding, appearance and reactions of normal newborns, supplies for newborns. Course limited to prospective Fairfax patients. Teachers are staff nurses. Fee is $15. Parent and Child (see listing below) also runs a course at Fairfax which is not limited to Fairfax patients.

FLAME (Family Life and Maternity Education), regional mailing address: 10113 Parkwood Terrace, Bethesda, 323-6892. A non-profit, volunteer orgaization. Six-week course on Lamaze and other methods of prepared childbirth. Classes are taught by teachers trained and certified by FLKAME. Fee is $15, with some scholarships available. Free pregnancy care classes-film nights and, starting in January, free Cesatrean birth film nights are offered. Sessions are held in homes or public facilities in Arlington, Falls Church, Alexandria, Springfield, Vienna, Reston, McLean and Annandale. FLAME also has a post birth program, including a TOT line to answer questins about newborn babies and nursing mother service.

H.O.M.E. (Home Oriented Maternity Experience), mailing address, 511 New York Ave., Takoma Park, 585-5832. A non-profit volunteer organization. Five seminars for couples interested in home deliveries. Course covers advantages of home births, parental responsibilities, equipment, procedures, medications used, complications, contra-indications and the transition to parenthood. Classes taught by nurse-mid-wives and chilbirth educators in public facilities in Northern Virginia and suburban Maryland. No fee for course; membership fee, $5, is optional.

La Leche League, mailing address, 8802 Canberr Dr., Clinton. Md., 868-3765. A non-profit organization offering mother-to-mother information. In addition to telephone referral service for breast feeding advice, La Leche runs a series of four meetings on the advantage of breast feeding, how to overcome difficulties, different childbirth methods and nutrition and weaning. Classes meet at members' homes in Northern Virginia. No fee for course; $8 membership fee.

Northern Virginia Mothers of Twins Club membership mailing address, 503 Tavenner Court, Sterling, 430-727. For other clubs in the area contact National Monthers of Twins, 5402 Amberwood Lane, Rockville, Md., 460-9108. Provides supportive services after birth on a mother-to-mother basis. The club has a booklet on raising twins, monthly lectures on twin-related subjects and a hot line service to answer specific questions or to act as a answer specific questions or to act as a listening post. Membership fee, $5.

Parent and Child, mailing address, 420 University Blvd. East, Silver Spring, 439-7611. A non-profit volunteer organization. An eight-session course on prepared childbirth. No particular method is stressed. Course covers fetal development, labor and delivery, ways to alleviated discomforts of pregnancy, anesthesia, Ceasrean delivery, breast feeding, exercise, infant feeding and care of the newborn. Teachers are registered nurses with experience in labor and delivery. Classes are held in churches, hospitals, schools and other public facilities in Northern Virginia. Fees are $40, with scholarships available. Post birth services include Listening Ear (telephone line for mother-to-mother advice on breast and bottle feeding), New Mothers Circle (mother/baby-to-mother/baby meetings), Parents Circle (meetings in parents' homes with speakers) and Parent to Parent, a non-medical support group of parents who have experienced unusual or difficult pregnancies, deliveries or early childhood problems.