Attatchment

HideShow resource information
  • Created by: Hope
  • Created on: 02-03-15 16:33

Attachment

What is attachment?

  • A close emotional relationship between two people, which involves a feeling of well-being and a desire to be close. 
  • Although attatchments occur throughout your entire life, the attatchment made between an infant and caregiver is particularily important 

Maccoby identified 4 characteristics of being attatched (how you feel):

1) Seeking proximity, especially at times of stress

2) Distress on seperation

3) Pleasure when reunited

4) General orientation of behaviour towards the primary care giver

1 of 47

Bowlby's Attachment Theory (1969)

Attachment is adaptive and innate

Children have an innate drive to become close to a caregiver. 

Innate - happens in every culture/country/time, always exists in hymans, natural (they already know how to do it) e.g. Sucking your thumb or crying 

A young animal stays close to a caregiver who will feed and protext the young animal = adaptive behaviour 

Adaptive behaviours are behaviours that increase the likelihood of survival and reproduction 

Belsky (1999) - It is adaptive NOT to form  close relationships when the environment is sufficiently dangerous to make it likely that attachment figures will die early and violent deaths 

- Does it increase survival by being born and becoming attached only for your dad to go to war?

2 of 47

Bowlby's Attachment Theory (1969)

Sensitive Period 

A child requires the continuous presense of a primary carer throughout a sensitive period lasting at least the first 18 months - 2 years. (Someone who is always there)

Bolwby identified 2 serious consequences of failing to form an attachment or a serious disruption to the attachment during the sensitive period (e.g. prolonged seperation)

Affectionless Pyshchopathy 

  • Inability to experience guilt or deep feelings for others 
  • This could lead to being a criminal - Affectionless psychopaths find it difficult to appreciate the feelings of their victims and so lack remorse

Development Retardation

  • Bolwby proposed there is a critical period for intellectual devlopement 
  • If children are deprived of a maternal relationship for too long they would suffer retardation i.e. very low intellegence.
3 of 47

Bolwby's Attachment Theory (1969)

Caregiving is Adaptive

Its adaptive for a care giver to attach to their child 

Bolwby noted that infants are born with a set of instinctive behaviours e.g. smiling, sucking, gesturing and crying. - These are called social releasers 

Social releasers have evolved in order to make the parent want to look after their baby

''Babies smiles are powerful things, leaving mothers spellbound and enslaved''

The interplay of the social releasers and parenting reponses is the process that builds the attatchment between the infant and the carer. 

If the parent does not provide the appropriate parenting reponses to the childs social releasers which can cause psychological damage.

THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR IN A CHILDS DEVELOPMENT IS THE EFFORT AND SKILL OF THEIR PRIMARY CARER. 

4 of 47

Bolwby's Attachment Theory (1969)

A Secure Base 

e.g. home 

Attachment is important for protection, it acts as a secure base which a child can explore the world and become more intellegent, it is a safe haven to return to when threatended and it fosters independence

Monotropy and Hierarchy 

Montropy = The Primary Attatchment e.g. the main caregiver (...Mother?)

Hierarchy = Secondary Attatchment figures e.g. Grandparents?

5 of 47

Bolwby's Attachment Theory (1969)

Internal Working Model 

Bowlby proposed that the developing child forms a mental representation of their first attachment relationship and said that this would effect how they treat others in the future and their own success as a parent.

If the child internalises a working model of attachment as kind and reliable, they will tend to bring these qualities to their future relationships 

If the child is neglected or abused - they will reproduce these patterns

The Continuity Hypothesis 

The link between the early attachment relationship and later emotional behaviour

Indiviudals securely attached in infancy continue to be socially and emotionally competent 

Insecurely attached children have more social and emotional difficulties later in life

6 of 47

Lorenz Theory of Attachment

Ethologists believe that attachment is related to a behaviour called imprinting which is shown by nesting birds. 

Lorenz aimd to show how some bird species attach themselves to a moving object if it is exposed to it in the early critical period. He wanted to show they can attach to any object (even a welly boot)

In his experiments Lorenz arranged for himself to be the first moving object that some chicks saw after hatching 

He found that the chicks followed him everywhere.

From this he found that imprinting have certain important characteristics:

  • It happens automatically without any obvious teaching or learning 
  • It only occurs within a narrow time limit (usually within 36 hours of hatching) called the critical period 
  • It is irreversible: once a bird follows an object, it will remain attached to it.
7 of 47

AO2: Lorenz Theory of Attachment

Weaknesses

  • It assumes that behaviours that look the same in different species have the same causes - Animal behaviour is a lot more likely to be innate and less influenced by learning than in human behaviour which is liable to be more flexible 
  • Imprinting during the critical period has been seen as too rigid - Imprinting is more likely to occur during a certain limited period but it does still happen outside of this - so the term 'sensitive period' is more popular 
  • The effects of imprinting are not necessarily irreversible (Guiton 1966)

Strengths:

  • It is better than learning theory or social learning theory as it is able to account for the intensity of the emotional bond between caregiver and child 
  • It explains the fact that the child has a strong propensity to attach and the attachment object is liable to be that person who is most sensitive to childs needs
  • It accounts for stanger anxiety (which other theories are able to do) 
  • Highlights the importance of emotional security as the foundation so the child can proceed 
8 of 47

AO2: Bolwbys Attachment Theory

Weaknesses:

Bolwbys views on monotropy have been critisised: infants display attachment behaviours towards a variety of attachment figures rather than just the mother - Bolwby did not deny that children can have multiple attachments but he saw the one to the mother as unique - But Rotter (1981) said the mother is not speical in the way the infant shows its attachment to her.

Schaffer and Emerson (1964) found that multiple attachments seem to be the rule rather than the exception - 

  • At 7 months, 29% of the infants had formed several attacments, 10% had 5 or more
  • At 10 months, 59% had developed more than 1 attachment 
  • By 18 months, 87% had done 
  • Only half the 18 month olds were strongly attached the mother
  • Almost a third were most strongly attached to father 
  • About 17% were equally attached to both parents 
9 of 47

Learning Theory

Behaviourism assumes that all behaviour is learnt.

There are two processes involved in behaviourism:

Classical Conditioning:

A learning process that occurs when two stimuli are repeatedly paired: a response ot the second stimulus is eventually elicited by the first stimulus alone 

Operant Conditioning:

Learning through Reinforcement 

Learning occurs when we are rewarded for doing soemthing. Each time do you something and it results in something good, the behaviour is being reinforced. It becomes more likely you will repeat this behaviour in the future 

If you do something that results in something bad, it becomes less likely you will repeat the behaviour (punisher)

10 of 47

Learning Theory

Classical Conditioning: 

Infants desire for food is fufilled by the mother

Mother + food = pleasure 

Mother = pleasure = attachment 

Operant Conditioning:

Dollard and Miller (1950) 

When babys are hungry they experience discomfort. The mother will feed them and take away the hunger = negative reinforcment 

Therefore becasue the mother has taken away the babys discomfort they will become attached

THIS IS CALLED CUPBOARD LOVE. THE INFANT BECOMES ATTACHED BECAUSE HE/SHE IS FED AND THAT THE INFANT BECOMES ATTACHED TO THE PERSON WHO FEEDS THEM

11 of 47

AO2: Learning Theory

Strengths:

  • Provides an adequate explanation
  • There is empirical support to show that we do learn through association and reinforcement (Pavlovs Dog and Little Albert 

Weaknesses:

  • Food may not be the only reinforcer i.e. attention
  • Harlow showed that food is not as important as comfort. Research using animals though is antromprphic 
  • Schaffer and Emerson supported Harlow by showing that infants were not necessarily attached to the person who feeds them
  • It is reductionist
  • It is deterministic 
12 of 47

Harlow (Learning Theory AO2)

Aim: To determine whether food or close comfort of a blanket was more important.

Procedure: Harlow placed infant comneys in cages with two 'surrogate mothers'. In one experiment one of the surrogate mother was made from wires and had a baby bottle attached to 'her'. The other was made from soft and cuddly terry cloth but did not have a bottle. 

Findings: The infants spent most of their time clinging to the cloth mother, even though 'she' provided no nourishment. 

Conclusion: Moneys have an unlearned need for contact comfort, which is as basic a need as the need for food. 

Harlow also seperated new born monkeys and raised them in individual cages. Each cage contained a baby blanket which they became very attached too showing great distress when removed. This attachment to their blankets and siplay of behaviours comparible to those of monkeys ssperated from their mothers, contradicts the view that attachment comes from an association with nourishment 

13 of 47

Schaffer and Emerson (Learning Theory AO2)

Procedure: Sixty scottish infant were followed up at 4 weekly intervals throughout the first year of their lives and then again at 18 months. Mothers reported the infants behaviour in seven everyday situations like leaving the baby alone, with a babysitter ect. Information was obtained about if the baby protested or not and how much/ how regularily they protested and whos departure made them protest. 

FIndings: Infants were clearly attached to people who did not perofrm care taking activites. (Notably the father). Also in 39% of cases, the person who usually fed, bathed and changed the infant (typically the mother) was not the infant's primary attachment figure.

Conclusion: Two features of a persons behaviour which best predicted whetehr they would become an attachment figure for the infant were:

  • Responsiveness of the infants behaviour 
  • The total amount of stimulation they provided (e.g. talking, touching ect)

Schaffer said that 'cupboard love' theories have it the wrong way round, instead of infants forming attachment due to nutrition (they live to eat) they are active seekers of stimulation (they eat to live)

14 of 47

AO2: Bowlbys Theory of Attachment

Sensitive Period - 

P- Hodges and Tizard support Bowlby that failure to form attachment during the sensitive priod has irreversible effects on emotional development 

E- Children in an institution found it difficult to attachand so struggled with peers when they were older

J- Therefore we can see that failure to attach is irreversible 

Attachment is Universal-

P- Tronik provided evidence that attachment is universal 

E- Tronik found that in an african tribe even though many different women looked after the baby they still had only one primary attachment (which was their mother)

J- This supports Bowlby as it shows attachment to primary carer is universal 

15 of 47

AO2: Bowlby's Theory of Attachment

Monotropy and Heirarchy (Weakness)

P- Bowlby claimed that babys would have a primary attachment figure called monotropy and a secondary attachment figure called the heirarchy. Tronik Et Al studied the Eef tribe and to some extent refuted Bowlby 

E- The babys showed attachment to many different women - this refutes the monotropy idea.

J- However, Tronik found that they slept with their mother and at six months they showed attachment 

Caregiver Sensitivity

P- Bowlby says that there is a primary care giver than gives attention, which is supported to Schaffer and Emerson

E- Schaffer and Emerson found that babys primary attachment was to who gives them attention

J- Therefore there is support that babys do have a primary attachment figure 

16 of 47

Secure/Insecure Attachment

A Secure Attachment:

A strong, content attachment of an infant to their primary caregiver, which develops as a result of sensitive repsonding by the caregiver to the infants needs. 

An Insecure Attachment:

Forms due to the caregiver's lack of sensitivity to responding to the infants needs. It may be associated with poor subsequent cognitive and emotional development 

17 of 47

Different types of Insecure

Insecure-Resistant:

Those who both seek and reject intimacy and social interaction. These children respond to the seperation from their caregiver with immediate and intense distress

Upon reunion, these children display conflicting desires for and against contact. They may angrily resist being picked up while also trying other means to maintain proximity. 

Inescure Avoidant:

Characterised by children who tend to avoid social interaction and intimacy with others. In the strange situation shuch children show little response to seperation and do not seek the proximity of their care giver on reunion.

These children are happy to explore with or without the presnese of their care giver. 

They are also characterised by high levels of anxiousness as well as avoidant behaviour and may become angry becasue their attachment needs arent met 

18 of 47

The Strange Situation

Devised by Mary Ainsworth. A lab study using a controlled observation to investigate the differen attachment styles by placing infants in stressful situations and observing their reactions 

Aim: To investigate whether infants display different behaviour towards the primary caregiver and towards strangers according to the security of attachment. The aim was to see how infants aged 9 to 18 months behave under conditions of mild stress and also novelty 

Procedure: During the observation the infants were put through different stressors and were observed in stages. 

The research room was a novel environment - 9x9 square room with squares marked on the floor to track the infants movement. 

Stress was created by the presence of a stranger and by the seperation from the caregiver. Data was collected by a group of researchers. Who used time sampling- reconrding what the infant was doing every 15 seconds 

19 of 47

The Strange Situation

The observer noted down the intensity of the infants behaviour using certain behaviours:

  • Proximity seeking, contact maintaining, proximity and interaction avoiding, contact and itneraction resisiting and search behaviours 

It had 8 episodes, each lasting 3 minutes:

  • Mother, baby and experimenter (lasts less than 3 minutes)
  • Mother and baby alone
  • Stranger joins mother and baby
  • Mother leaves baby and stranger alone
  • Mother returns and stranger leaves
  • Mother leaves; baby left completely alone
  • Stranger returns 
  • Mother returns and stranger leaves 
20 of 47

The Strange Situation

Findings:

Type B Securely Attached: These children play independantly and do not show much distress in episodes 3 and 4. They greet the carer happily when she reutrns. They require and accept comfort from the carer in episode8

Type A Inescure Avoidant: These children play independently and do not show distress when the mother leaves nor make contact when she returns

Type C Inescure Resistant: These children explore less in episode 2 than others. Very distressed at being left with a stranger, but, althouguh they rush to the carer on her return they do not readily accept comforting. 

21 of 47

The Strange Situation

Effects of Attachment type:

Later Childhood:

Longitudinal Study - demonstrated a correlation between early attachment experience and later social functioning 

Secure: Positive outcomes such as higher orientaion and interpersonal harmony 

Avoidant: Later aggressiveness and generally negative

Resistant: Greater anxiety and withdrawn 

Adult Romantic Behaviour:

Hazan & Shaver: Used the 'Love Quiz' in a newspaper. This quiz asked questions about early experiencesn, about current love experiences and involvements also attitudes towards love

Found there were characteristic patterns of later romantic behavoiour associated with each early attatchment time. Supports Bowlbs theory. 

22 of 47

AO2: The Strange Situation

Conducted in a lab

Internal Validity effected-

  • No extraneous variables i.e. room being really cold 
  • Possible demand characteristics i.e. mother changing behaviour

External Validity effected-

  • Low ecological validity 
  • Mundane realism as mother often leaves babies at day care 
23 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

Israel- Infants grow up in a Kibbutz. It is a communal society. Nobody owns possessions, clothes ect- the group does. Children are brought up by the community and everybody raises them.

Japan- There is an emphasis on developing close relationships. Japanese mothers almost never leave their child with a stranger and are rarely seperated from their child. Mothers are very repsonsive. 

Germany- The ideal is independence, non-clingy infants who do not make demands on their parents but rather unquestionably obey demands. 

24 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

Takahashi (1990) 

  • Used the strange situation on 60 middle class Japanese children 
  • They showed no insecure-avoidant and extremely high rates of insecure-resistant. 
  • They were very distressed when left alone to point where 90% of the studys had to be stopped
  • This could be becasue Japanese children never leave their mothers
  • They appear insecure but it is reflection of hwo they were brought up

AO2-

P- This study has good population validity. 

E- 60 babys were used     J- High external validity 

P- Population validity is put into question

E- All babys are middle class       J- Cannot be generalised, lowers external validity 

25 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

Van Ijzendoorn and Kroonenberg (1988) 

  • Carried out a meta analysis of 32 studies
  • Using 8 countries, over 2000 children 
  • Found intercultural and intracultural differences
  • Secure was the most common in all cultures, followed by insecure avoidant 
  • Apart from Japan and Israel where inescure-reisstant was 2nd most common

AO2-

P- High external validity 

E- 32 studies, 2000 children          J- Results can be applied outside, can be generalised 

P- Lacks internal validity 

E- Cannot evaluate meta analysis ( may not have correct results)

J- Might not be correct/ measuring what it aimed too 

26 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

27 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

Tronick (1992) 

  • Studied an african tribe called the Efe
  • They lived in extended family groups 
  • The infants were looked after and breastfed by other mothers but they slept with their own mothers at night 
  • Despire such differences in childrearing practices infants showed one primary attachmen at 6 months 

AO2-

P- Despite results from Takashshis study, Tronik shows that there are similarities in attachment between cultures 

E- Efe....

J- This contradicts Takashi 

28 of 47

Cultural Variations of Attachment

Fox (1977) 

  • Looked at infants raised on an Israel Kibbutz
  • They spent time on metaplots (nurserys) and were cared for by metaplets (nurses) 
  • Their attachment was tested by the Strange Situation with metaplet and mother
  • They found that the infants were equally attached but there was a greater attachment to the mother 

AO2-

P- Fox's evidence refutes the rest of the argument 

E- He found that despite showing attachment to both the mother and the metaplet, the infant was more attached to the mother

J- This suggests that attachment is similar all around the world 

29 of 47

Criticisms of research of cultural variations of a

Rothbaum Et Al (2000) 

- Attachment theory and research is not relevant to other cultures because it is so rooted in American culture. He looked in particular at the contrasts between American and Japanese culture

The Sensitivity Hypothesis:

- Bowlby/Ainsworth promoted the view that secure attachent was related to caregiver repsonsivness and sensitivity. Rothbaum argues this reflects Western ideas of autonomy which is culturally relative.

The Secure Base Hypothesis:
In the West, secure attachments are seen as providing an infant with a secure base from which to explore, thus promoting independence. Attachment realtionships in Japan are dependence orientated in keeping with the Japanese concept of amae (depend and presume anothers love).

30 of 47

Disruption of Attachment

Disruption of Attachment = A situation where the attachment between an infant and their caregvier has been damaged or lost. 

Disruption can occur because of physical seperation that results in a loss of emotional care. e.g. Death, war, boarding school, work, divorce. All of these can lead to deprivation

Short Term Seperation: day care/carer has short stay in hospital 

Long Term Seperation: Families seperate, both parents die ect. 

31 of 47

Disruption of Attachment

James and Joyce Robertson 

Made a series of films of young children in situations where they were seperated from their primary attachment figure.

Jane, Lucy, Thomas, Kate 

Aim: To investigate how attachment is effected when the mother goes to hospital 

Procedures: Jane, Lucy, Thomas and Kate are all under 3 years old and were placed in foster care while their mothers went into hospital. The Robertsons tried to sustain high levels of emotional care. Fathers visists were arranged to maintain the emotional link. Kate was taken to visit her mother.

Findings: All children seemed to adjust well, they showed some signs of distress - Thomas rejected cuddles, they slept well, did not reject mother reuniting. There was some reluctnace to part with foster mother - formation of good emotional bond 

Conclusion: If emotional bond is maintained chance of deprivation is lowered 

32 of 47

Disruption of Attachment

John: 

Aim- To investigate the effects of a short term break in attachment 

Procedure- Mum in hospital, put in residential nursery for 9 days, his dad visits him regularily

Findings: First 2 days, normal behaviour. changes wanting attention from nurses, seeks comfort from teddy, next days stops eating, drinking, playing, crys, no longer enthusiastically greets dad, when mum collects he struggles,has angry out bursts towards her for months.

Conclusion: Even if the disruption in attachment is short term, the emotional effects of the infant can be quite long term and deprivation is still likely 

33 of 47

AO2: Disruption of Attachment

Strenghts 

P- The experiments have high ecological validity and high mundane realism 

E- THis is because the setting is very similar to real life as it is in fact a study of real life events. Also the mother having to go into hosptial for a period of time is something that would happen 

J- Therefore the studys have very high external validity so it can be generalised

P- It has useful implications for both psychology and real life 

E- The situations studied can happen in real life and so the studies can be used to learn how to treat those children seperated from their parents

J- This can be seen in the new practices that hospitals put into place after the research results were published - parents can now stay in the childs hospital room. This means the research is strong as it has real life applications 

34 of 47

AO2: Disruption of Attachment

P - We can critise the external validity of the research due to the fact thart they are cases studies 

E- This is becasue case studies only look at an individual, a group or a situation at a time. THis means the findings are based on research which has a low population calidity. 

J- THis means we cannot necessarily apply the conclusions from the findings to all children due to the indiviudal differences which may occur. 

P- One of the biggest issues that these case studies face however is that it does not have very strong internal validity 

E- This is becasue the children studies will be easily affected by extraneous variable i.e. the temprement of John may vary greatly compared to the temprement of another child.

J- This means we cannot be sure that Robertson and Robertson are truly measuring what they aimed to measure. 

35 of 47

Research Into Privation

Privation= No attachment

Oxana Malaya - 

Her childhood was spent in the company of dos which meant that she exhibited the characteristics of feral children. Her actions and sounds mimicked those of her carers. She would run around on all fours and bark When she was first found in 1991 she could hardly speak.

In 2006 at the age of 23, Oxana Malaya still resides at a home for the mentally handicapped.

Genie - 

Locked in a room until she was 13 and a half. When she was found she could not stand erect, and could not speak. She has never recovered socially. She is now in her late 30's.

36 of 47

Czech Twins Case Study

Koluchova (1976) 

Andrei and Vanya are identical twin boys born in 1960. They lost their mother shortly after birth and were cared for by an social agency for a year and then fostered by a maternal aunt for a further six months. Their development was normal.

Their father remarried but his new wife was very cruel t the twins. Banishing them to the cellar for the next five and a half years, beating them from time to time. 

On discovery at the age of seven the twins were dwarfed in stature, lacking speech, suffering from rickets and did not understanding the meaning of pictures - Their doctors predicted permenant physical and mental handicap.

Removed from their parents, the twins underwent a programme of physical remediation and entered a school for children with severe learning difficulties. The boys were adopted by dedicated women. From a state of profound disability they caught up with age peers and achieved emotional and intellectual normality. They went to basic education and then to techincal school, they are now married with children with good jobs. 

37 of 47

Research Into Privation

Hodges and Tizard (1989)
Aim: To investigate the long term effets of early intituational care.

Procedure: Longitudinal study and natural experiment. CHildren aged younger than 4 months at start. 65 children until they were 16. Recieved good physical care but formation of attachments was discouraged. Some children stayed in the institution, others were adopted and some returned (restored) to their families. 

Findings: At age 16, relationships between adopted children and parents did not differ much from a control group of non-adopted families but were considerably better bonded than restored children. Unlike non-adopted children, adopted and restored children had similar problems in forming relationships outside of the family and all had problems with peers - likely to be bullies

Conclusion:  Adopted children form better relationships with their families than restored children (posssibly becasuse the adoptive parents want to make relationship work). Adopted and restored children expeirence probelms forming relations ships (low self esteem?) so, early privation has negative effect on ability to form relationships 

38 of 47

Research Into Privation

AO2: Hodges and Tizard (1989)

  • Individual Differences - some adopted children did badly and some restored children did well
  • A biased sample was left at the end of the study - greater numbers of well adjusted restored children than maladjusted adopted children dropped out
  • The evidence suggests that early childhood experiences (including privation) can be overcome in later life. This contradicts Bowlby's view of a critial period.

Rutter Et Al (2007) 

Procedure: Studies 100 romanain orphans, assessed them at 4, 6 and 11 years old. 

Findings: Children adopted before 6 months showed 'normal emotional development'. After six months showered disinhiited attachments and had problems with peers. 

Conclusion: Long term consequences may be less severe than though. If children have opportunity to form attachment . If childrendont form atttachments than consequences are severe. 

39 of 47

Research Into Privation

What is an attachment disorder?

When some children experience disruption of early attachments which effect their social andemotional development

Two types of attachment disorder:

  • Reactive or inhibited: Shy and withdrawn, unable to cope with most social situations
  • Disinhibited Attachment: Overly-friendly, attention seeking

Poor Parenting: Quinton Et Al (1984) - Compared grouop of 50 women who'd grown up in child homes. With control group of 50 woman grown up in normal home. Found that ex-instituionalised women where experiencing difficulties as parents, their children spend lots of time in care. 

Deprivation DwarfismThougut that lack of emotional care was the cause of some 'dwarfism'. Garner (1972) provided evidence from case studies e.g. a girl was born and had to be fed through a tube so her mother never picked her up or cuddled her. At 8 months this child was sevely withdrawn and physically stunted so she had to go to hospital where she recieved lots of attention and therefore went back to normal. 

40 of 47

The Impact of Day Care

Day Care: A form of temporary care (i.e. not all day and all night long) not given by family members of someone well known to the child, usually outside of the home. Sometimes reffered to as 'non-parental care' - Childminders, Nurseries. 

Day Care Research 

Violata and Russell (1994) - Social Development: (AGAINST)

Meta-analysis of 88 studies - concluded than regular day care of more than 20 hours per week had negative effect on social development and behaviour 

NICHD (2003) - Aggression: (AGAINST)

Longitudinal study started in 1991. Over 1000 children from different background and 10 different locations. Assessed regularly. When they were 5 the data showed that the more time spend in day care, the more agressive the children were rated by adults. 

41 of 47

Day Care Research

Belsky and Rovine (1988) - Peer Relations: (AGAINST)

Assessed attachment using the strange situation in infants who had been given 20 or more hours of day care a week before being one year old. Children where more likely to be insecurely attached. Insecurely attached children are more likely to have peer problems.

Brown and Harris (1999) - Social Development: (FOR)

Depressed women claimed their low mood was due to the isolaion of being at home with the children. Mothers at home feel isolated and bored and as a result the children find interaction difficult.

Field (1991) - Peer Relations: (FOR) 

Found that the amount of time spend in full time day care was positively correlated with number of friends they had in school.

42 of 47

Impact of Day Care

Types of Day Care:

Childminders- Take care of small group in their own home. More likeable because the attention the child recieves is more likely to be similar to the care they get at home 

Day Nursery - Childcare professionals take care of child in own home. Nursery within workplace. 

Factors in High Quality Day Care:

  • TO avoid potential negative consequences such as increased aggressiveness 
  • Field (1991) found that the greatest benefits of day care on peer relations where those in high quality
  • If we want to maximise positive effects we need to maximise quality of care 
43 of 47

AO2: Research Into Day Care

Weaknesses: 

Some research indicatesthat day care makes children aggressive, but not all research agrees. One swedish study (Prodromidis Et Al (1995) looked at first-borns and found that child care arrangments were no liked with agression. 

Friedman argues that you can look at the NICHD study differently,for example the study found 83% of chidren who spend 10-30 hours in day care did not show higher levels of aggression 

Also the NICHD study showed that mother sensitvity to her child was a bettter inicator than hours spend in childcare, with those with sensitive mothers being less aggressive ect. This shows childrens development is more strongly affected by factors at home than those in day care.

The findings are not casual. The data can not show that day care CAUSED aggression, it just shows that the two are linked. The APA argue that the research is meaningless until we know the process by which aggression is increased.

44 of 47

Day Care (Background)

In 1997, the government made sure that all 4 year olds would get a place in nursery for free (private or state)

National Childcare Strategy launched in 2004, extended to 3 years olds and gave guidlines on what should be taugth in nurseries. 

Training and support for childminders was given 

Sure Start programmes set up to provide support for families wth children under 3 in economically deprived areas. (This was cancelled in 2011)

45 of 47

Day Care

How has attachment research influenced childcare practices?
Theories including Bowblys have suggested;

  • The child needs a secure adult attachment 
  • The child can have multiple attachments with different adults
  • THe child should be able to use the attachment figure as a safe base and rely on them if stressed or scared

Key Workers:
To reduce stress, many nurseries use the 'key worker' technique (Goldschmied and Jackon 1994)

Key workers act as the significant adult for each child while in day care. Can be used as an attachment figure when stressed -morning sepatarion/anxious return. Emotionally avaliable, provide warmth and security 

46 of 47

Day Care

Good Quality Structural Characteristics:

Campbell Et Al (2000) 

Low adult - child ratio : For every 3 children there is one adult to provide the accurate quality of care. 

Mixed Age group - Clarke-Stewart Et Al (1994) - improves social development - social learning through observation

We trained staff and low staff turnovr (avoids insecurity, allows chidren to get to know staff) achieved by training and good pay 

A secure attachment: A stable figure who provides security and saftey, should be responsive and warm - Key Worker System 

A structured day: Activities have strcuture with free play time, some group time, structured actiivites like drawing - make environment predicatble and help the child feel safe. 

47 of 47

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar Psychology resources:

See all Psychology resources »See all Attachment resources »