Stages of Attachment identified by Schaffer

  • Created by: Amckoy
  • Created on: 17-05-16 08:54
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  • Schaffer: Stages of Attachment
    • Key Study: Schaffer & Emerson (1964)
      • -Studied 60 infants, aged: 5-23 weeks     -Most came from working class backgrounds in Glasgow
        • They were studied until the age of 1. Their mothers were visited every 4 months
          • Mothers reported their child's response to separation in various everyday situations
            • Separation anxiety was recorded on a 4 point scale and findings led to the development of
              • Findings led to Schaffer's 4 Stages of Attachment
    • 1) Pre- attachment phase (0-3 months)
      • From 6 weeks of age: infants become attracted to other humans
        • Preferring them to objects and events
          • Their preference is evident by them smiling at people's faces
    • 2)        Indiscriminate attachment phase (3 to 7/8 months)
      • Infants begin to discriminate beween familiar and unfamiliar faces
        • Smiling more at known people
    • 3) Discriminate attachment phase (7/8 months onwards)
      • Infants begin to develop specific attachments
        • Staying close to particular people & becoming distressed when separated from them
          • They avoid unfamiliar people and protest if strangers try to handle them
    • 4) Multiple attachments stage (9 months onwards)
      • Infants form strong emotional ties with other major care givers (e.g. grandparents) and non-caregivers (e.g. children)
        • Their fear of strangers weakens
          • But attachment to mother figure remains strongest


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