(Original post by LeaX)
Psychologists have put forward different explanations of attachment, such as learning
theory and Bowlby’s theory.
Outline and evaluate one or more explanations of attachment. (12 marks)
Psychologists have many different explanations of attachments. One of which is Bowlby's evolutionary theory. He suggests that attachments are an innate, biological response to illicit care giving, and therefore survival, of the infant. This is achieved through social releasers, which as crying and their 'cute' appearance which appeals to the potential caregiver. According to Bowlby's theory of monotropy, this caregiver should be a woman. Bowlby suggests that a child's attachment acts as a template for their future relationships so a stable attachment is necessary for a socially successful individual.
However, Bowlby's theory is based on research in goslings, which innately imprint on the first large, moving object they see. It could be argued that birds can't be generalised to human behaviour. There is also criticism to monotropy, as research has shown hat babies can form secure attachments with their fathers, or even multiple attachments with both parents. A criticism of Bowlby is also the learning theory. This suggests that attachments are formed by reinforcement (classical conditioning) or association (operant conditioning) this criticises that attachments are innate. Another criticism is research into cross-cultural variations in attachments. If attachments are innate, they should be universal. However, the variations of attachment types suggests different.
Ok I feel really mean, but i'd give you 5/12. 4/6 for description, 1/6 for evaluation. Your description is better than your evaluation, however I think you described the internal working model, without naming it (although argubaly that is part of his psycho-dyanmic theory, depends are you doing aqa or edexcel, for aqa it's fine) and because you only gave description for one theory, i think you really needed to get as much as possible in there, i.e the maternal deprivation hypothesis. Description of Bowbly's 44 juvenile thieves study would too count as A01 Also, I can't remember if this is necceserary but you didn't actually define attachment, this would be a good introduction as you should write 12 markers like an essay.
Onto evaluation, the gosling studies are Lorenz's work, not Bowbly, this is a bit unclear from your wording. You haven't said WHY birds can not be generalised to human behaviour, (this would give you higher marks, I know it seems obvious but you have to pretend the examiner is a little child, saying why, why, why and explain everything). You haven't clearly explained why opererant or classical conditioning is a critism of attachment being innate. Again, I know it probabaly seems obvious to you that learning theory means, that something is learnt, therefore caused by environment, but you need to say this! You could have also made this more descriptive by saying how exactly (If i recall it's to do with food) Another good study to use would be Harry Harlow's rhebus monkeys if you wanted to evaluate learning theory and also supports the maternal deprivation hypothesis. Futhermore, I can't remember the researcher's name, but there is one about Israeli kibbutz's( even though the infants are with a 'metapelet' (type of nurse) for the majority of time, they show stronger attachment behaviour to their mother, supporting his idea of monotropy etc. ) For a 12 marker, I'd say you need to include 3/4 studies.