Measuring attachment - 'The Strange Situation'

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  • Created on: 02-12-12 17:14
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  • Measuring attachment - 'The Strange Situation'
    • van Ijzendoorn
      • Cross-cultural studies
      • van Ijzendoorn + Kroonenberg (1988) - meta-analysis (32 studies from 8 countries)
        • German infants = highest % avoidant attachments
        • Israeli + Japanese infants = highest % ambivalent attachments
          • Takahashi (1990) - infant-mother separation = not norm in Japan
        • All cultures: most common attachment = secure
      • Strange Situation = useful tool to measure attachment
        • Different child-rearing norms between (+within) cultures = varying % of attachment types
    • Ainsworth (1978)
      • Ainsworth et al (1978) - strange situation = procedure measuring attachment
        • Replicated many times + standard procedure for measuring type + quality of attachment
      • Type + quality of attachment = dependent on mother's behaviour - secure attachment = sensitive to needs, responsive, cooperative + accessible
      • Attachment types: Avoidant, Secure, Ambivalent + Disorganised - Main et al (1985)
      • Replicated many times to see whether  classifications show good reliability over time + category percentages = similar across cultures (van Ijzendoorn)
      • Ainsworth's study - failed to show good test-retest reliability
        • Hesse + Main (2000) - other sudies show fairly stable classification over time (especially secure + disorganised categories)
      • Waters et al (2000) - link between type of attachment in infancy + relationships later
      • Focus on relationship with 1 person (usually mother) - ignores relationships with others
      • Rothbaum et al (2000) - Strange Situation = not appropriate for non-Western cultures
        • Miyake et al (1985) - 35% Japanese infants = ambivalent
        • Takahashi et al (1990) - japanese infants cried because seldom left alone
      • Belsky (1984) - focus on mother's sensitivity + not wider influences e.g. child's temperament, background, health + social context
        • Kagan (1984) - Strange Situation could be assessing temperament not attachment: avoidant = rarely stressed/ anxious = easily stressed
      • Fraley + Spieker (2003) - fixed category system = oversimplified

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