Harlow's monkeys

  • Created by: Georgia
  • Created on: 02-05-19 13:39
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  • Harlow's monkeys (1959)
    • Aim
      • To test the learning theory of attachment
      • Do monkeys prefer food or comfort?
    • Procedure
      • Either a wire mother or a cloth mother
      • Any amount of time spent with the mother was recorded
    • Findings
      • Monkeys preferred contact with cloth mother whether or not she produced milk
      • When frightened by a loud noise, monkeys clung to the cloth mother
      • Monkeys with wire mother had problems mating, were much more timid and were bullied
      • Monkeys have an innate need for comfort - attachment concerns emotional security more than food
    • Evaluation
      • Comparative psychology; animal behaviour cannot be generalised to humans
        • Humans are much more complex
      • Highly controlled to establish cause and effect
      • Unethical to use animals in psychological research and to cause such high amounts of stress
      • Practical applications; help to improve emotional care in hospitals and care homes
      • Inspired Bowlby's work; showing its long-term importance


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