- Created by: BreeFRANCiiS
- Created on: 10-04-17 10:55
Introduction to Attachment: Caregiver-Infant Inter
Interactions - Babies have frequent and important interactions with their caregiver.
Reciprocity - Mothers respond to infant alertness. From 3 months close attenion between mother and infant.
Interactional synchrony - Interactions become co-ordinated. Isabella et al.: quality of attachment related to synchrony.
Hard to know what is happening
- Observe simple gesture and expression, and assume infant's intentions.
- Capture fine details of interaction.
Purpose of synchrony and reciprocity
- Feldman: just observations, purpose not entirely understood.
Introduction to Attachment: Attachment Figures
Parent-infant - Traditionally mother-infant, other attachment figures like the father may also be important.
The role of the father - Grossman et al.: attachment to fathers less important but fathers may have a different role - play and stimulation.
Fathers as primary carers - Field: fathers as primary carers adopt attachment behaviour more typical of mothers.
Inconsistent findings - Different research questions overall picture unclear.
Children without fathers aren't different - Suggests the father role isn't important.
Fathers not primary attachments - May be due to traditional gender roles or biological differences.
- Socially sensitve research: working mothers.
Schaffer's Stages of Attachment: The Study
Aims - To investigate the age of attachment formation and who attachments and formed with.
Method - Mothers of 60 Glasgow babies reported monthly on separation anxiety.
Findings - Most babies showed attachment to a primary caregiver by 32 weeks and devloped multiple attachments soon after this.
Good external validity - Observations were in participants' natural environments.
Longitudinal design - Same participants were observed at each age, elimijnating individual differences as a confound.
Limited sample characteristics - All families were from the same area and over 50 years ago, so may lack generaliability.
Schaffer's Stages of Attachment: The Stages
Asocial stage - Little observable social behaviour.
Indiscriminate attachment - More observable attachment behaviour, accept cuddles from any adult.
Specific attachments - Stranger anxiety and separation anxiety in regard to one particular adult.
Multiple attachments - Attachment behaviour directed towards more than one adult (secondary attachments).
Asocial stage - Social behaviour is hard to observe in the first few weeks but this doesn't mean the baby is asocial.
Conflicting evidence - van IJendoorn et al.: research in different contexts has found multiple attachments may appear first.
Measuring multiple attachments - Just because a child protests when an adult leaves does not necessarily mean attachment.
Animal studies of Attachment: Lorenz
Procedure - Goslings saw Lorenz when they hatched.
Findings - Newly hatched chicks attach to the first moving object they see (imprinting).
Sexual imprinting - Adult birds try to mate with whatever species or object they imprint on.
- Birds and mammels have different attachment systems so Lorenz's results may not be relevant to humans.
Some observation questioned
- Guiton et al.: birds imprinting on rubber gloves did later prefer their own species.
Animal studies of Attachment: Harlow
Procedure - Baby monkeys given cloth or wire 'mother' with feeding bottle attached.
Findings - Monkeys clung to cloth surrogate rather than wire one, regardless of which dispensed milk.
Maternally deprived monkeys - Grew up socially dysfunctional.
The critical period - After 90 days attachment wouldn't be formed.
Theoretical value - Demonstrated that attachment depends on more contact comfort than feeding.
Practical value - Howe: informs understanding of risk factors for child abuse.
Ethical Issues - Suffering of the monkeys would be human-like.
- Can Harlow's findings be applied to humans?
Explanations of Attachment: Learning Theory
Classical conditioning - Caregiver (neutral stimulu) associated with food (unconditioned stimulus). Caregiver becomes conditioned stimulus.
Operant conditioning - Crying behaviour reinforced positively for infant and negatively for caregiver.
Attachment as a secondary drive - Attachment becomes a secondary drive through association with hunger.
Animal studies - Lorenz and Harlow showed that feeding is not the key to attachment.
Human research - Schaffer and Emerson: most primary attachment figures were the mother even when others did most feeding.
Ignores other factors - Cannot account for the importance of sensitivity and interactional synchrony.
Explanations of Attachment: Bowlby's Theory
Monotropy - One particular attachment is different in quality and importance than others.
Social releasers and the critical period - Innate cute behaviours in the first two years.
Internal working model - Mental representations of the primary attachment relationships are templates for future relationships.
Mixed evidencefor monotropy - Some babies form multiple attachments without a primary attachment. Suess et al.: other attachments may contribute as much as primary ones.
Support for social releasers - Brazleton et al.: when social releasers ignored babies were upset.
Support for internal working model - Bailey et al.: quality of attachment is passed on through generations in families.
- Monotropy is a socially sensitive idea.
- Temperament may be as important as attachment.
Ainsworth's Strange Situation
Procedure - 7-stage controlled observation. Assessed proximity seeking, exploration and secure base, strager and separation anxiety, response to reunion.
Findings - Infants showed consistent patterns of attachment behaviour.
Types of attachment - Secure: enthusiastic greeting, generally content.
Avoidant: avoids reunion, gennerally reduced response.
Resistant: resists reunion, generally more distressed.
Support for validity - Attachment ype predicts later social and poersonal behaviour, e.g bullying.
Good reliability - Different observers agree 90%+ of the time on children's attachment types.
Culture-bound - Attachment behaviour may have different meanings in different cultures so the Strange Situation may be measuring different things.
Cultural Variations in Attachment
van IJendoorn - Compared rates of attachment types in 8 countries. Found more variation within than between countries.
Simonella et al.: Italian attachment rates have changed, may be due to changing practices.
Jin et al.: Korean attachment rates similar to Japan, could be due to similar child-rearing styles.
Conclusion - It appears that attachment is innate and universal and secure attachment is the norm. However, cultral practises affect rates of attachment types.
Large samples - Reduce the impact of anomalous results so improve internal validity.
Samples unrepresentative of culture - Countries do not equate to cultures nor to culturally specific methods of child rearing so can't make generalisations.
Method of assessment is biased - Research using the Strange Situation imposes a USA test on other cultures (imposed etic).
Bowlby's Theory of Maternal Deprivation
Separation versus deprivation - Physical separation only lead to deprivation when the child loses emotional care.
Critical period - The first 30 months are critical and deprivation in that time causes damage.
Effects of development - Goldfarb: Deprivation causes low IQ. Bowlby: emotional development, e.g. affectionless psychopathy.
44 thieves study (Bowlby) - Many more affectionless psychopaths than controls had a prolonged separation.
Evidence may be poor - Orphans have experienced other traumas. Bowlby may have been a biased observer.
Counter evidence - Lewis: sample of 500, no link between early separtaion and criminality.
A sensitive period - Bowlby exaggerated the importance of the critical period.
Romanian Orphan Studies: Effects of Institutionali
Rutter's ERA study - 165 orphans adopted in Britain. Some of tjose adopted later show low IQ and disinhibited attachment.
Bucharest Early Intervention Project - Random allocation to institutional care or fostering. Secure attachment in 19% of institutional group versus 74% of conrols.
Effects of Institutionalisation - Disinhibited attachment and delay in intellectual development if institutionalisation is prolonged.
Real-life appliaction - Both institutional care and adoption practice have been improved using lessons from Romanian orphans.
Fewer extraneous variable - Romanian orphans had fewer negative influences before institutionalisation than e.g. war orphans.
Romanian orphanages not typical - Conditions were so bad that results may not generalise to better institutions.
Influence of Early Attachments on Later Relationsh
Internal working model - Bowlby's idea that the primary attachment relationship provides a template for later relationships.
Relationships in later childhood - Kerns: securely attached children have better friendships. Myron-Wilson and Smith: securely attached children less likely to be involved in bullying.
Relationships with romantic partners - McCarthy: securely attached adults have better relationships with friends and partners. Hazan and Shaver: secure responders had better and longer-lasting relationships, aviodant responders had fear of intimacy.
Parental relationships - Bailey et al.: mothers' attachment type matched that of their mothers and their babies.
Evidence is mixed - Zimmerman et al.: found little relationship between quality of attachment and later attachment.
Low validity - Most studies assess infant attachment by retrospective self-report which lacks validity.