58 terms

Psychology as level: attachment

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Attachment
An emotional bond between 2 people. It is a two way process that endures over time. It leads to certain behaviours eg.clinging, proximity seeking and serves the functioning of protecting an infant.
Caregiver
Any person providing care for a child
Interactional synchrony (brief)
When two people interact they tend to mirror eachother in terms of facial expressions, body movements and emotions.
Reciprocity (brief)
responding to an action , where actions of one person elicit a response from the other partner.
Reciprocity
Occurs between infants and carers resulting in mutual behaviour where both parties are able to generate a response from one another almost like a conversation. eg. smiling by the parent results in smiling by the baby. Such interactions between the infant and carer facilitate and strengthen the attachment bond.
Brazelton
Suggested reciprocal behaviour was an important precursor for the development of communications later. Signals the infant gives allows the carer to anticipate the child's responses and react appropriately. it is this sensitivity to the childs needs and behaviours which lays the foundation for attachment to develop.
Tronick
Found that when people who had been engaged in dialogue with their babies were asked to stop moving their babies became puzzled and distressed when their smiles were unable to provoke a reciprocal response. This highlights how babies engage and anticipate reciprocal responses to their own behaviour.
Interactional synchrony
Invovles infants imitating specific hand and facial gestures from an adult model and broadly refers to a finely tuned co ordination of behaviours between the child and parent during speaking and listening. infants and parents are seen to develop a shared sense of timing and rhythm which develops into a flow of mutual behaviour. Meltzoff and Moore demonstrated that interational synchrony occurred with infants imitating facial expressions, tongue protrusions and mouth openings from an adult model when only 3 days old. This suggests the behaviour was innate rather than learned.
Evaluation of caregiver-infant interactions
STRENGTHS:
-support for real imitation. Deyong observed infants when they interacted with two objects: one stimluated tongue movements, the other poenign and closeing of the mouth. Findings showed infants between 5-12 weeks made little interactional synchrony response to the objects, therefore suggesting that infants display specific social responses to human interactions and it is not psuedo-imitation.
-other supporting research: Condon and Sander analysed video footage to find that behaviour of infants was coordinated with the adults speech almost as if taking turns in a conversation. This supports the idea of interactional synchrony and that behaviour is innate.
-Isabella
LIMITATIONS:
-Piaget-Behaviour is leaned rather than innate in the first year of an infants life as they are just repeated behaviour that is being rewarded and are not consciously translating what they see into matching movements. So reciprocity and interactional synchrony do not occur
-Marian
-Individual differences
-Meltzoff and Moores study lacks reliability
Multiple attachment
Having more than one attachment figure
primary attachment figure
The person who has formed the closest bond with the child, demonstrated by the intensity of their relationship.
Stranger anxiety
Distress shown by an infant when approached or picked up by someone unfamiliar
separation anxiety/protest
Distress shown by an infant when separated from their caregiver.eg. screaming/crying in oder to get caregiver to come back to them.
Schaffer and Emerson
Observed 60 babies from glasgow over 2 years. They were obseerved every 4 weeks until they were one years old, and again at 18months. Thye were specifically interested in what age infants experienced separation protest and stranger anxiety. mothers were asked to keeps a diary and were interviewed about experiences. they identified 4 stages of attachment
First stage of attachment
Indiscriminate attachment (birth-2 months):
infants produce familiar responses to both animate and inanimate objects. begin to show preference to social stimuli through reciprocity and interactional synchrony.
beginings of attachment
Become more social, prefer to interact with humans, can distinguish between familiar and unfamiliar people. Dont show anxiety
Discriminate attachment
Form primary attachmen with one particular person (ussually primary caregiver) Experience distress when caregiver leaves (seperation anxiety) Experience stranger anxiety
Multiple attachments
Form multiple attachments beyond primary caregiver eg. siblings, grandparents etc.
Evaluation of stages of attachment
STRENGTHS:
-bowlby

LIMITATIONS:
-ignores cultural variations
-biased sample
-unreliable data
-fails to consider significance of ultiple attachments-->rutter
-inflexibility of stages
Classical conditioning
Learning through association. A neutral stimulus (mother) is consistenly paired with an unconditioned stimulus(food) si that it eventually takes on the properties of this stimulus and is able to produce a conditioned stimulus and produces a conditioned response wi=hich is the same as the conditioned response (pleasure).
Learning theory
A group of explanations whcih explain behaviour in terms of learning rather than any inborn tendencies or higher order thinking. When children are band everything can be explained through the experineces they have.orn they are blank slates
Operant conditioning
learning through reinforcement and consequences.
Social learning theory
Learning through oservation snd immitstion of others behaviours that are rewarded.
Behaviourists
People who believe that human behaviour can be explained in terms of conditioning. They focis on what people do rather than what may or may not be going on in their minds.
Drive reduction theory
Proposed by Dollard and Miller. A infant is motivated by food and so when they are fed their drive is reduced as a reqarding feeling of pleasure is produced. This is positive reinforcement and the behaviour is likely to be reapeated in the future. Food becomes the primary reinforcer and the mother/person who supllies the food becomes the secondary reinforcer as they are associated withthe feeling of pleasure and so an attachment is formed as the child seeks he person who can supply the reward.
Evaulation of Learning theory as an explanation of attachment
STRENGTHS:
-similar behaviour patterns to animals
LIMITATIONS:
-vagueness of drive reduction theory
-food is not the key element
-reductionist
-Bowlbys evolutionary theory
Continuity hypothesis
The idea that emotionally secure infants go on to be emotionally secure, trusting and confident adults.
Critical period
a biologically determined period of time during which certain characteristics can develop. outside of this window such development will not be possible.
Internal working model
mental model of the world which enables individulas to predict and control their environment. In this case of attachment, the model relates to a persons expectations about relationships.
Monotropy
The idea that one relationship the infant has with their primary attachment figure is of special significance in emotional development.
Social releaser
A social behaviour or characteristic that elicits caregiving and leads to attachment
Bowlby
Attachment behaviour evolved because it serves an important survival function as an infant who is not well attached is not well protected. Attachment happens in two directions so te parent/carer too hasd to be attached to ensure that the infant is well cared for and survives. Attachment is biologically driven through evolution. The primary caregiver is crucial and the deprivation of this attachment leads to negative permenant side effects.
Adaptive and innate
through evolution we have developed a drive to attach to the caregiver to increase survivak and reproductive value Infants have social releasers eg, crying, which are desgined to cause the carergiver to react in a certain way.
Critical period
There must be a specific time period for normal develeopment and after this period it gets progressivley more difficult to attach. An infant uses the caregiver as a secure base to explore their surroundings as they feel comfortable with them in unfamiliar environments and new situations. Secure attachments encourage independence.
Monotropy
The speicial relationship is with the person who responds the most sensitively to their needs. This first bond remains the primary attachment firgure and other attachments help contribute to the infants development.
Internal working model
By using their first attachments, infants can predict how others will act towards them and how to act towards others in return.
Contiunity hypotheisis
There is consistency between the first attachemtn and later relationships
Evaluation of Bowlbys theory
STRENGTHS:
-Schaffer and Emmerson
-Ainsworth
-Carlson
-Minnesota longitudinal study
-Belsky and Rovine
-Rutter
-Sroufe
LIMITATIONS:
-Cultural variations
-Czech twins
Insecure avoidant
A type of attachment which describes chidren who tend to avoid social interactions and intimacy with others
Secure attachment
Strong, contented attachemtn of infant and craegve as a result of sensitive responding to the infants needs. they are comfortable with social interactions and intimacy.
Insecure resistant
A type of attachment which describes those infants who both seek and reject intimacy and social interations
Strange stuation
A controlled observation designed to test attachemtn security.
Ainsworths aim
Ainsworth devised the strange situation to be able to systematically test attachment. how infants between 9 and 18 moths behave under conditions of mild stress and novelty using separation protest and stranger anxiety.
Ainsworths procedure
One room marked into 16 squares to help reord the infants movemtnts. consisted of 7 episodes to highlight certain behaviours.
1.baby plays with toys with parent in the room to test secure base
2. strnager enters and talks to parent to show reaction to unfamilar adult
3.parent leaves room, stranger reacts to infant accordingly to test separation anxiety
4.parent returns and stranger leaves to show reactions to reuniun
5.parent leaves room again tp test separation anxiety
6.Stranger enters and offers comfort to test ability to be conforted by a stranger
7.parent returns and reaction to reuinuin is observed
The findings
Type B (secure): 66%
-reluctant t leave mothers side
-some distress when mther leaves
-happiness and enthusiasm when mther returns
-avoid stranger but feel safe to interact when in the company of their mother

Type a (insecure avoidant: 22%
-happy to explore surroundings whether mother is present or not
-indifference when mother leaves
-does not seek proximity and little interest
-does not feel anxious towards stranger

Type C(Insecure resistant):12%
-does not feel comfortable to explre
-Extreem distress when mother leaves
-Seeks proximity but refuses comfort
-afrid of stranger and rekjects comfort
Evaluation of Ainsworths strange situation
STRENGTHS:
-real world application in circle of security projects
-reliable-->replicable results
LIMITATIONS:
-sample not representative of whole population (middle-class)-->cant generalise results
-main and soloman--> lack of consistent behaviour
-only uses mothers
-Ethical issues
-lack ecological validity
Studies of cultural variations: van Ijzemdoorn and kroonenburg
Aim: Too see in inter and intra cultural differences existed

Procedure: -conducted a meta analysis of the findings of 32 studies of attachment behaviour. 2,000 studies of the strange situation in 8 different countries were examined.

Results: -small inter-cultural differences with securely attached being the most common and insecure-avoidant the next most common except Israel and Japan who were collectivist at the time of research. Intra-cultural differences were greater. Uk=highest percentage of secure attachment Germany=highest percentage of insecure avoidant Japan=highest percentage if insecure resistant

Conclusion: global patterns of attachment were similar to that found in the US (Aisnworth). Secure attachment is the 'norm', supporting the idea that this type if attachment is best for a healthy social and emotional development.
Cultural similarities: Tronick
-studies an African tribe called Efe from Zaire who live in extended family groups and the children are often looked after and breast fed by different women however they still showed one primary attachment, despite differences in child bearing.
Cultural differences: Grossman and Grossman
-German infants classified as insecurely rather than securely attached. Perhaps due to different child bearing practices -keeping interpersonal distance between parents and children-no proximity seeking behaviours.
-Japan-insecure resistant-rarely separated from mothers.
Evaluation of cultural variations
Limitations:
-similarities may nit be innately determined-mass media exposes cultures to similar influences-learned rather than biological
-based on American culture-there are differences between cultures about what behaviour is a sign of secure attachment. The strange situation assumed that one of these songs is the willingness to explore however in traditional Japanese culture dependence rather than independence is a sign. May appear to be insecurely attached due to the western criteria--lack validity.
Bowlbys theory of maternal deprivation
The value of maternal care-a warm, intimate and continuous relationship with a mother is needed to ensure normal mental health.
Critical period-a child may become emotionally disturbed if they're depended such cares during the first two and a half years of their life. Damage can be avoided if a suitable emotional care is provided by a mother-substitute.
Long term consequences- derogation may result on emotional maladjustment or mental health problems.

44juvenile thieves study:
PROCEDURE-analysed case histories of children at a hold guidance clinic-children were emotionally maladjusted. -studied 88 children- half were thieves the other half was a control group.
Evaluation of Bowlbys maternal deprivation theory
STRENGTHS:
-Bifulco-study of women whonhad experienced separation from their mother. 25% later experienced depression and the effect was greater if separation was experienced before the age of 6--support,s idea of critical period

-changed the way children are cared for in hospitals-used to be separated from parents but now parents are encouraged to visit their children and more flexibility of visiting hours.


LIMITATIONS:
-emotional separation is ignored-Radke-Yarrow found that 55% of children with severely depressed mothers were insecurely attached compared to 29% of children with non-depressed mothers--may not be able to provide suitable emotional care so psychological as well as physical separation can lead to deprivation.
Romanian orphan studies: the effect of institutionalisation
Rutty and Sonuga-Barke- 165 Romanian children who spent early lives in Romanian institution. 111 were adopted before the the age of 4 and 54 before the age of 2. Physical, cognitive and social development examined and progress compared with 52 British children who were adopted before they were 6 months old. By the age of four some of the Romanian children had caught up with the British children, however those adopted after 6 months showed significant deficits and signs of disinhibited attachment highlighting the long term consequences of institutionalisation. --consequences less server if children adopted early.

Effects of institutionalisation:
1.intellectual under-functioning-cognitive underdevelopment
2. Disinhibited attachment-treat near strangers with over friendliness as don't discriminate between who they form attachments with
3. Poor parenting-Quinton-women raised in institutions experience difficulties acting as a parent later in life.
4. Physical underdevelopment-lack emotional care and poor nourishment--smaller
Evaluation of effects of institutionalisation
STRENGTHS:
-application to improving children's lives-Bowlby's research changed the way children were looked after in hospitals-process of adoption has changed-1st week of birth-secure attachments formed with adoptive families.-research into institutionalisation draws attention to issues and act as catalysts for improving children's lives

LIMITATIONS:
-individual differences-some children who don't form attachments in the sensitive period are able to recover-may received special attention due to smiling more-recover from negative effects of institutionalisation

-deprivation is not the only factor-physical conditions leading to poor health-lack of cognitive stimulation affecting development-information could be wrongly interpreted.
Influence of early attachment
Hazan and shaver-designed a study to test the internal working model-'love quiz' in newspaper to examine current and historical attachments and asked about attitudes towards love to asses IWM.-620 responses-found a positive correlation between attachment type and love experiences. Eg. Securely attached described their love experiences as happy ect. Relationship was found between love experiences and internal working model.

Behaviours influenced by the internal working model:
1.childhood friendships-in Minnesota child study-individuals who were classified as securely attached were highest rated in social competence later in childhood due to higher expectations of others.
2.poor parenting- Harlow-link between poor attachment and difficulties with parenting.
3.romantic relationships-Hazan and shaver-link between early attachment types and romantic relationships.
4. Mental health-lack of attachment during critical period resulting in lack of internal working model-inability to interact with others--attachment disorder (included in DSM)
Evaluation of influence of early attachment
STRENGTHS:
-support from longitudinal studies-Simpson-assessed type of attachment at 1 year of age-securely attchched-better relationships in later life--attachment types and early influenced do predict future relationships

LIMITATIONS:
-research is correlational-does not show cause and effect- other factors eg.temperament (kagan)-effects the way parents respond-determining factor in attachment type-issues with later relationships

-deterministic-early experiences have a fixed effect on later relationships- Simpson-individuals past does not determine future course of relationship-and so is a rigid explanation that does not take into account other factors.

-retrospective classification-rely on adults answering questions about their early lives-memories of past may not be accurate--lack validity
Evaluation of cultural variations
Limitations:
-similarities may nit be innately determined-mass media exposes cultures to similar influences-learned rather than biological
-based on American culture-there are differences between cultures about what behaviour is a sign of secure attachment. The strange situation assumed that one of these songs is the willingness to explore however in traditional Japanese culture dependence rather than independence is a sign. May appear to be insecurely attached due to the western criteria--lack validity.
Bowlbys theory of maternal deprivation
The value of maternal care-a warm, intimate and continuous relationship with a mother is needed to ensure normal mental health.
Critical period-a child may become emotionally disturbed if they're depended such cares during the first two and a half years of their life. Damage can be avoided if a suitable emotional care is provided by a mother-substitute.
Long term consequences- derogation may result on emotional maladjustment or mental health problems.

44juvenile thieves study:
PROCEDURE-analysed case histories of children at a hold guidance clinic-children were emotionally maladjusted. -studied 88 children- half were thieves the other half was a control group. 14 of the thieves showed little sign of affection.
FINDINGS: 86% of affection less thieves experienced frequent separations, and almost none of the control group experienced early separations. He concluded that early separations are linked to affection less psychopathy.