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Mary Ainsworth Psychology

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Melissa Davis

on 9 May 2013

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Transcript of Mary Ainsworth Psychology

MARY AINSWORTH Strange Situation Experiment Hypothesis Amanda Heggan Melissa Davis Generalisations Limitations Results Independent Variable It is predicted that when the mother leaves the child and stranger in the room alone, the child will become distressed and cry out for it's mother and only when the infants mother returns will the child calm down. Procedure 1. Mother and Baby Play The generalisations in this case is that the results obtained were generalised to fit the rest of the public. his is inaccurate because depending on the culture the infant is brought up in will change the results in the study so the study was inaffective in showing this because it only used american families. There were a few limitations within this experiment, to begin it is very dependent on brief separations and reunions having the same meaning for all children. This is a big constraint when applying the procedure in cultures, such as that in Japan, where infants rarely separate from there mothers in ordinary circumstances. Therefore to get more accurate results, families of many different cultures should be used. Also despite its strengths, the procedure is only based on 20 minutes of behaviour. It cannot possibly cover all of the qualities of a child's attachment relationships. In the future, this can be overcome by also testing the effects of longer mother-child separations. Another limitation refers to the sample used. As all participants were middle classed, the experiment cannot be generalised to the whole population and was bias. The results can only be generalised to middle class American families. Therefore, in future studies a wider range of participants, from different socio economic groups should be used. Ainsworth identified three main attachment styles, they were secure, insecure avoidance and insecure ambivalent. 70% of the infants experienced secure attachment as when the mother left the room the infant became distressed and when she returned the infant became more positive. 15% of the infants experienced insecure avoidance as when the mother leaves the room the infant shows zero signs of distress and when the mother enters the room the infant shows little interest. The other 15% of infants experienced ambivalent attachment as when the mother leaves the room the infant shows extreme distress and when she returns the infant will go up to their mother but will resist contact and even push the mother away. The independent variable that was identified was the different categories of infant attachment behaviours based on the mother child bond. Attachment Theory of Development Dependent Variable Participants Characteristics of Participants: How they were selected: CONCLUSIONS Supported or Refuted? Ethical Considerations: Knowledge Gained Benefit to Society Mary Ainsworth's studies and definitions of the different types of attachment styles helped determine the best parenting styles as well as possible difficulties a child may face later in life.
The terms Secure, Insecure, and Avoidant attachment are used today to determine infant-caregiver relationships, adult relationships and even the relationship between children and their kindergarten teacher. The participants used in this experiment were a mixed group of girl and boy infants from 100 middle classed American families aged between 12 and 18 months old. As with the previous reunion, the mother comes back into the room and comforts the child, and the stranger exits. 8. Second reunion: Mother re-enters and the stranger leaves The stranger re-enters the room and tries to comfort the child. 7. Stranger returns Again, the mother exits the room, leaving the child all alone in the room, which again will cause some distress. 6. Second Seperation: Mother leaves the room As the mother re-enters, the stranger will leave. The mother will console the child, hopefully ending their distress. Researches will observe the babies reaction at this stage. 5. First Reunion: Mother re-enters and the stranger leaves The mother exits the room leaving the child with the stranger, which, generally speaking, leaves the infant in distress, so the stranger can attempt to comfort them. 4. First Separation: Mother leaves the room. The stranger enters the room and sits down in the other chair, not engaging with the mother or baby, but after a few minutes, the stranger tries to intercat with the child. 3. Strange Adult enters the room Once settled in, the mother stops playing with the child and sits in one of the chairs. The infant is left to explore the room freely and continue playing with the toys on their own. 2. Baby is left to Explore The mother and baby are shown into the experimental room, whic has two chairs and a range of toys for the infant to play with. As they settle, the mother plays with her baby. The hypothesis for this experiment was supported with the results obtained showing this, because when the mother left the child became distressed and despite the efforts of the stranger to calm the infant it was only when the mother returned that they stopped crying. The strange situation has been widely acclaimed throughout society because it seems to allow researchers to identify and measure the security of infant attachment, and was accepted methodology worldwide for measuring attachment.

Children who have secure attachment experience negative effects from day care, while insecurely attached infants appeared to benefit from being out of home and into day care. The dependent variable that was identified was the child's reaction to the stranger walking in the room based in their mother child bond. The participants in the Strange Situation experiment were selected from 100 middle classed American families using random sampling. Ainsworth suggested that behaviour in the strange situation classification was determined by the behaviour of the primary carer. Examples include securely attached infants are associated with sensitive and responsive primary care. Insecure ambivalent attached infants are associated with inconsistent primary care. And insecure avoidant infants are associated with unresponsive primary care. Ainsworths findings also provided the first empirical evidence for bowlbys attachment theory. The experiment has also been criticised on ethical grounds, because the child is put under stress, the stress caused by separation and stranger anxiety, the study has broken the ethical guideline protection of participants. 3 Types of Attachment
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