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Resourcd File

  1. 1. Child Development PSYB3 Revision Early Relationships AO1 AO2 Research evidence Evaluation Attachment and the role of caregiver-infant interactions (humans and animals) Role of care-giver infant interactions Immediate physical contact, imitation, interactional synchrony, modified language Harlow’s monkeys Used to support Bowlby’s hypothesis Use of animals? Human behaviour is much more complex. Ethics? Lorenz – imprinting, critical period Support for Bowlby Use of animals? Immediate physical contact (Klaus and Kennell – research seemed to indicate that mums had formed closer bonds with their babies, even up to 1 year later). The study suggested that there may be a SENSITIVE PERIOD immediately after birth that may be important for bonding to take place, hence Western practice for skin to skin after birth.) Imitation (Melzoff and Moore 1977 – infants shown facial expressions and then researchers identified if they copied it showing young infants imitate facial and hand movements of adult models). Interactional synchrony (Condon and Sander 1974 – babies coordinate actions with adult speech, reciprocal behaviour, when this is interrupted babies became distressed). Modified language (Snow and Ferguson 1977 –distinctive language patterns). (Genetics only appear to play a weak role in the development of attachments – nature / nurture?) Other studies have replicated Klaus &Kennell and found similar results. De Chateau et al (1987) carried out a similar study on Swedish mothers and their babies – this study implies that early skin-to-skin contact can indeed promote bonding. Myers – immediate physical contact not necessary of sufficient Mother were young and unmarried and from disadvantaged backgrounds therefore maybe it was the extra attention from the study not the effects of spending extra time? Imitation studies – babies will respond to inanimate objects! Interactional synchrony not related in all cultures. Modified language does enhance commination but there is no evidence it directly affects the formation or quality of attachment. Functions of attachment Cupboard love – attached to those that feed you Proximity – survival Lorenz – critical period supports, Bowlby also supports Harlow’s monkeys does not support! Ainsworth’s sensitive responsiveness supports this. Validity of the evolutionary explanation eg preference for a single attachment figure coincides with increasing mobility. Alternative interpretations eg in some circumstances it may be evolutionary advantageous to have insecure attachments and not be totally dependent on a
  2. 2. Child Development PSYB3 Revision value as infants need to stay safe Communication theory – infants chose those best able to communicate with them Internal working model – framework on which to build future relationships singlefigure (Belsky, 1991) Use of Supporting/contradictory evidence eg Harlow’s research (1959) supports the provision of security explanation and contradicts cupboard love theory. Links with broader psychological approaches eg cupboard love theory as positive reinforcement/operant conditioning Links with broader psychological concepts eg proximity seeking as a form of imprinting; correlation between infant attachment types and adult relationships (Hazan and Shaver, 1987) general related issues eg the concept of a critical period – attachment function is impaired if attachment is delayed. Dunn – internal working model is too general and pessimistic. Deterministic view that if your first relationship was unsuccessful so will all others Measuring attachments Secure and insecure attachments Ainsworth strange situation – secure, anxious-resistant, anxious-avoidant Van Ijzendoorn (cultural variations) – patterns Ainsworth showed are not universal. Adult Attachment Interview – 15 open questions about attachment, insecure-dismissing (relationships dismissed as not being important), autonomous-secure (recalled openly), insecure-preoccupied (actively struggle to please parents), unresolved (attachment trauma they have not come to terms with) Short-term reliability as children tested at one age is likely to have similar attachments when tested later. Attachment type is related to later behaviours. Similar attachments found in AAI. Focuses only on mother. Not appropriate for all cultures as conducted in America – Japanese infants become distressed in SS as they are seldom left alone Kagan – SS is really measuring temperament not attachment. Fixed categories are oversimplified. Possible short and long term consequences of privation and deprivation Deprivation – Short term consequences Robertson and Bowlby – Protest, Despair, detachment Long term consequences – separation anxiety, clinginess, insecurity in relationships, lack of trust, Bowlby’s 44 thieves Robertson and Bowlby – observations have been replicated Observations? Inter-rater reliability?
  3. 3. Child Development PSYB3 Revision Romanian Orphan studies Effects of institutionalisation Age related benefits of adoption (Rutter et al) Privation - Harlow’s monkeys, Genie, Koluchova twins Rutter – followed progress of children raised in Romanian orphanages Hodges and Tizard – 26 children placed in residential care from 4 months old, then adopted, no major difficulties found, institutional care does not always have adverse effect on development Rutter et al (1998) – 111 Romanian orphans brought to Britain for adoption in 1990’s compared with British adopted children. Discovered that although there were differences initially, after 4 yars there were no intellectual or physical difficulties, yet those arriving before they were 6 months showed more marked improvements. Unique opportunity for insight – forbidden experiment! Romanian Orphanages provided a unique opportunity for research. Although not all of these children show developmental catch-up leading to equivalence with UK raised controls, they nonetheless show a more significant improvement when compared to non- adopted Romanian peers. Case studies? Use of animals? Rutter – Bowlby incorrect in linking antisocial behaviour to separation, more to do with the stress and chaotic lifestyles of some families. Therefore it is not the separation it is the stress surrounding it. Variation in contact the Romanian orphans had may have mediated the effects of privation for some individuals. Recent evidence questions Rutter, general outlook is less positive if child is adopted after 6 months of age. Research mentioned specifically on the spec Bowlby Monotropy, critical period, irreversible long term damage, maternal deprivation causes delinquency (44 thieves) Support from Goldfarb (1943) who showed that when raised in an institution children performed less well on emotional and cognitive measures. Schaffer and Emerson – did not support, Rutter – maternal dep does not cause delinquency, Hodges and Tizard – children adopted can form good relationships even if this is after the critical period. Ignores dads!
  4. 4. Child Development PSYB3 Revision Later relationships Schaffer - Formation of attachments and stages Ainsworth – strange situation Van Ijzendoorn – strange situation cross culturally Stages – Asocial , diffuse, single attachment, multiple Secure, avoidant-insecure, resistant-insecure See measuring attachment. More anxious-avoidant attachments in Germany and more anxious resistant in Israel/Japan – child rearing practices affect type of attachment Research showed evidence against Bowlby’s theory as nearly one third of 18 month olds had multiple attachments See above in measuring attachments. Longitudinal therefore follows children overtime. See measuring attachment. Shows degree of variation across cultures, highlights ethnocentricity in Ainsworth’s research. Concept of stages for all children? See measuring attachment. Is it the mother’s sensitivity or the attachment which is being measured? Development of friendship in childhood and adolescence Age-related change in friendship Sex differences in children’s friendship Selman and Jaquette (1977) – with increasing age the nature of friendship changes.Bigelow & La Gaipa (1980) found children move from reward-cost to normative to empathic in terms of their descriptions of friendships at different ages. Bigelow and Gaipa (1975) – concept of friend becomes more sophisticated with age Selman (1980) stages – 3-6 years friend as a partner in physical interaction, age 5-9 years friend as a one way assistant to their needs, 7-12 years reciprocal, 10-15 intimate, close, jealousy, 12+ friendship without extreme intensity autonomous independence Boys – extensive – large groups Girls – intensive – intimate friendships Benenson (1990) boys and girls have different social networks Provides information on changes. Both show friendship moves from physical to psychological processes. Evidence to support changes in friendships over time. Lots of evidence to suggest these differences. Boys preferring larger groups Relied on interviews rather than observations of children with friends. The understanding of friendship may be limited by the language younger children are capable of using. Clinical interview is often used which lacks control. Are the difference because boys and girls prefer different activities?
  5. 5. Child Development PSYB3 Revision Lever (1976) girls worry more about friendships and worry it may breakdown – link to evolutionary perspective and the need for support? supported by the evolutionary perspective – need to compete for dominance. Nurturing and caring roles of girls is also supported using this view as this shows the need for care and support. Result of operant conditioning? M/F reinforces for gender appropriate activities? SLT – imitation? Research into the causes and consequences of popularity and rejection Coie and Dodge – sociometric study showing following types - popular, average, controversial, neglected and rejected. Xie (2006) age differences discovered in what characteristics young people think result in popularity Causes Attractiveness – Children prefer to be friends with those who are attractive, and even young children have been found to prefer to look at attractive rather than unattractive peers - Vaughn and Langlois (1983) Similarity – Children will choose friends who live near or who are seen regularly. Children will also choose playmates from similar background, of the same sex, with similar interests and so on. Kandel (1978) Childhood attachment – According to attachment theory and the internal working model, the relationship between child and mother figure sets the pattern for future relationships. Hazan and Shaver (1987) Use of observations? Use of interviews with younger children? It is difficult to determine cause and effect – is it the social inadequacy that causes rejection or vice versa? It maybe that when a child experiences peer rejection they then believe that all social situations will result in this rejection, leading to an expectation of social failure. As a result the child will become more and more deficient at social interaction It is very difficult to say whether these are a cause of a consequence of their rejection Observational studies are useful in helping describe behaviour but there may be issues with inter-rater reliability. Other research has indicated that popular and rejected children do not differ in their initiations of contact
  6. 6. Child Development PSYB3 Revision Personality characteristics – Rejected children seem to show aggressive and disruptive behaviours, Dodge (1983) Social skills – A number of studies have shown that one reason for rejection by peers may be that a child has poor social skills and therefore experiences difficulty interacting with others. Oden and Asher (1977) Consequences – psychiatric problems, alcoholism, get into trouble with the law Berk (2003) acceptance by peers is extremely important for a child’s psychological adjustment. Kupersmidt and Coie (1990)demonstrated that rejected children are at risk of negative outcomes with aggressiveness have a role in this process Duck (1991) rejected children were more likely to grow up to suffer from a range of mental disorders, eg depression, schizophrenia and alcoholism. Parker & Asher (1987) reviewed findings about peer relations and later personal adjustment. Concluded that children who have difficulties with peers such as rejection are at risk of difficulties in later life. Links clearest for children who are not accepted by their peers who are also aggressive – these children found to be particularly at risk for dropping out of school and criminality. Studies suggest rejection has serious consequences but it is difficult to determine cause and effect. Were the children rejected because they showed disordered behaviour which was a cause and not a consequence of their rejection. Cause and effect? Ignores other influences. Suggestion that aggressiveness may be a more reliable indicator of negative life outcomes than peer rejection Cause and effect? Ignores other influences such as biology. Suggestion that aggressiveness may be a more reliable indicator of negative life outcomes than peer rejection.

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