Classical Conditioning- food (unconditioned stimulus) produces a sense of pleasure (unconditioned response). The food becomes associated with the person doing the feeding, who then becomes a conditioned stimulus, also producing a sense of pleasure.
Operant Conditioning- the hungry infant feels uncomfortable, which creates discomfort. Being fed reduces the discomfort. This is rewarding and the infant learns that food is a reward or a primary reinforcer.
Evaluation: Schaffer and Emerson found that fewer than half of the infants they studied developed a primary attachment to the person who usually feeds them.
Evolutionary approach - Bowlbys theory
Attachment behaviour promotes survival because it ensures safety and food for the offspring.
Bowlby claimed that if attachement does not take place before the age of 2 1/2, then it is much more difficult thereafter.
Infants are born with social releasers such as crying and smiling, and they have cute faces which elicit care-giving.
ainsworth et al - secure attachments are the result of mothers being responsive to childrens needs
monotropy - infants need one special attachment relationship. This primary attachment forms with the individual who has offered sensitive repsonses.
The internal working model - the infant relates their relationship with the primary attachment figure with other relationships later in life
evaluation of evolutionary theory
This theory has had an enormous effect on peoples lives, in particular the care if children