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Flashcards in Attachment✅ Deck (38):


The interaction of similar behaviour patterns between carer and infant

This helps create the attachment between them as they produce similar responses e.g caregiver making a facial expression and the infant mimicking it



A two way enduring emotional tie to a specific other person


Interactional synchrony

The coordinated rhythmic exchanges between carer and infants

The infants move their bodies in tune with the care giver e.g both move their heads at same time as if they are in sync making it look like they are the same person


Asocial stage 0-6 weeks

Babies show similar responses to objects and people
Don't prefer specific others
Look at faces and eyes


Indiscriminate stage 6 weeks-6months

Babies become more sociable. Can tell apart and prefer to be in human company. Can be easily comforted by anyone. Don't show fear to strangers


Specific attachments- after 7month

Baby begins to show separation anxiety. Shows fear of strangers


Multiple attachments 10/11 month+

Multiple attachments soon follow after the first attachment. Show attachment behaviours towards several different people such as siblings grandparents and childminders


Bowlbys 5 most important key principles

Sensitive period
Social releasers
Internal working model
Continuity hypothesis


Strengths of bowlbys theory
Two studies

Harlows monkeys- agrees there's a internal working model by showing monkeys in isolation killed their kids

Shaver and hazen- internal working model having a life long effect


Weaknesses of bowlbys theory

Underestimates the role of the father
His view of critical period has been criticised by the Czech twins
May be culture bound (ethnocentric)


Separation anxiety

The distress shower by an infant when separated from their caregiver


Stranger anxiety

Distress shown by an infant when approached or picked up by someone unfamiliar


Reunion behaviour

When an attachment figure enters back in the room the baby will show a different behaviour e.g stop crying



The idea that one relationship that an infant has with their primary attachment has a special significance in emotional development


Internal working model

Primary attachment provides the child with an internal working model, it's a mental model or a template for their future relationships


Critical period

A determined period of time in which a child develops an attachment, after this time it will be very difficult to make a primary attachment. Bowlby argues after 2 and a half there's likely to be serious developmental consequences later in life with no attachment


Maternal deprivation

To be deprived is losing something. So this is the loss of emotional care that's normally provided by a primary care giver


Social releasers

Characteristics that trigger care giving such as smiling or crying


Continuity hypothesis

The idea there's a link between early attachments and later emotional behaviour
If a child doesn't form attachment within the critical period likely to have long term effects
Those with secure attachments will continue to be socially and emotionally stable


Key study that identified stages of attachment

Schaffer and Emerson


Advantages of the stages of attachment study

Tested in their own homes so they were comfortable in their own environment preventing them from distress

Longitudinal study so it lasted over a long period of time meant data’s more valid


Disadvantages of stages of attachment study

The 60 baby’s may not all have others to attach with some could be only children or not have any grandparents

Can’t generalise the study as if was only done in Glasgow so culture bias


Who did research into infant- caregiver interactions

Meltzoff and Moore


Meltzoff and Moore’s procedure

In the controlled observation they recorded the reactions and watched the children in real time slow motion and frame by frame. The videos were then judged by independent observers who had no knowledge of what the infant had seen they had to note all findings of the infants behaviour. Dummies were used to see if it would controlled the child and prevented the babies from reacting


Meltzoff and Moore findings

Imitating was noticed in children as young as 3 years old. Although jean Piaget believes before the age of one children Just copy what people do so it’s a fake imitation. So a criticism is that Piaget believes the study should have been used on older children for a More accurate result as they are more knowledgeable and interactional synchrony is more likely


Conclusion of stages of attachment study

There was an association between infant and care giver so interactional synchrony occurred as there was rhythmic exchanges when different stimuli was shown. Observers said it was innate not learnt


Who studied the strange situation



Procedure of strange situation

Used a controlled observation. First the parent and infant play together the parent sits while the child plays. A stranger enters talks to parent. Parent leaves and infant plays. The parent comes back offers comfort and stranger leaves. The parent leaves infant alone. Stranger enters and offers comfort. Parent returns and offers comfort.


Strange situation findings

Ainsworth identifies 3 types of attachment. The most common type was secure. A child with a secure attachment had high willingness to explore, but the when stranger entered they had moderate anxiety. When the parent left the child had some separation anxiety but was easy to soothe. When the parent came back they were happy and enthusiastic. The other types were insecure avoidant and insecure resistant


Strange situation conclusion

Ainsworth suggested that the care giver sensitivity hypothesis as an explanation for doefferent types of attachment. Ainsworth maternal sensitivity hypothsis argues that a child’s attachment style is dependant on the behaviour their mother shows towards them.


Advantages of strange situation

Controlled observation means high reliability so no external factors and can be easy to replicate


Disadvantages of strange situation

Lacks ecological validity as it takes place in a artificial environment so can’t be sure the child is reflecting their natural real life behaviour

Ethical issues child isn’t protected from harm psychological distress


Who studied cultural variations

Van ijzendoorn and kroonenberg


Procedure of cultural variation

Conducted a large scale meta analysis in which they analysed the results of 32 separate studies in 8 countries which used ainsworth strange situation. 2000 babies were studied . Percentages of children who fell into each attachment type were analysed and compared


Findings of the cultural variations

It was found that overall all counties have more secure attachments then avoidant or resistant. Collectivist countries such as Israel and japan have high resistant attachments compared to individualist countries. Greta Britain has the lowest resistant and highest secure. China has the lowest secure


Conclusion of cultural variations

Found a large variation in the attachment types of children in different cultures, which is likely to reflect the different child rearing practices


Advantages of the cultural variations

Has significant applications to psychology. The study was the first large scale comparative analysis of attachment studies in different countries. The conclusions significantly developed our understanding of how the different child rearing practices impact on the child’s life.
The use of meta analysis is ethically sound so you don’t have to consider being deceived informed consent or protection from harm


Disadvantages of cultural variations

May not be fully representative because of the amount of studies. For example the USA had 18 studies took place there so the results will be more accurate but every other country only had 1,2 or 3 studies

The use of strange situation in each study is an issue. This is because the strange sitarion is argued to be ethnocentric procedure. Developed in America so based on American norms so may only be useful for American culture