Explanations of attachment: learning theory

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  • Created by: AK
  • Created on: 06-04-18 18:03
Classical conditioning
Food = US, pleasure from being fed = UR, caregiver = NS, baby associates caregiver with food, so becomes CS, after conditioning caregiver produces CR of pleasure
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Operant conditioning
Learning to repeat behaviour, or not, depending on its consequences. Babies cry for comfort, and when the caregiver gives the right response, the behaviour is reinforced
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Attachment as a secondary drive
Hunger is a primary drive, and as a caregiver provides food the primary drive becomes generalised to them. Attachment is therefore a secondary drive
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Evaluation - counter-evidence from animal research
Lorenz's geese imprinted before they were fed, so young animals don't necessarily attach to those who those who feed them
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Evaluation - learning theory ignores other factors associated with forming attachments
Research suggests quality of attachment is associated with reciprocity and interactional synchrony. It is very hard to reconcile these findings with the idea of cupboard love
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Evaluation - counter-evidence from human research
Schaffer and Emerson's study shows that feeding doesn't seem to be an important factor in humans as babies developed a primary attachment with their mother even if a carer did most of the feeding
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Learning to repeat behaviour, or not, depending on its consequences. Babies cry for comfort, and when the caregiver gives the right response, the behaviour is reinforced

Back

Operant conditioning

Card 3

Front

Hunger is a primary drive, and as a caregiver provides food the primary drive becomes generalised to them. Attachment is therefore a secondary drive

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

Lorenz's geese imprinted before they were fed, so young animals don't necessarily attach to those who those who feed them

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

Research suggests quality of attachment is associated with reciprocity and interactional synchrony. It is very hard to reconcile these findings with the idea of cupboard love

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
View more cards

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