Schaffer and Emerson 1964

  • Created by: MollyL20
  • Created on: 30-10-20 09:26
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  • Schaffer and Emerson (1964)
    • Aim
      • Investigate the formation of early attachment, in particular the age at which they developed, their emotional intensity and whom they were directed
    • Method
      • Involved 60 babies 29 females, 31 males, all from Glasgow with the majority being from the working class to skilled families
      • They were visited at their homes every month from a year and then again at 18 months.
      • The researchers asked the mothers questions about the kind of protest the baby had shown, to show separation anxiety
      • They also measured stranger anxiety in which they all measured the babies attachments
    • Findings
      • Between 25-32 weeks, about 50% of the babies showed separation anxiety towards the mother
      • Attachments were formed when the caregiver who was most interactive and sensitive to infants signals
        • This wasn't always the person they spent most time with
      • At 40 weeks, 80% of the babies had specific attachment. 30% displayed multiple attachments
    • Evaluation
      • Good External Validity
        • The study was carried out into the family homes and most of the observations were done by the parents during ordinary activities
        • Meaning the the behaviour of the babies was unlikely to be affected
        • Therefore, the participants behaved naturally and therefore has good external validity
      • Longitudinal design
        • This means that the study was carried out over a long period of time using the same children
        • An alternative would have been a cross sectional design which means that they observe different children
        • However, longitudinal designs have better internal validity because there isn't a confounding variable of individual differences between participants
      • Limited sample characteristics
        • It had a good amount of data because of the use of 60 babies
        • However, they were all from the same district , same social class in the same city at over 50 years is a limitation
        • This means that the results cant generalise well to other social or historical contexts


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