• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Outline and Evaluate Bowlbys Evolutionary Theory of Attachment. (12mark)

Extracts from this document...


Outline and Evaluate Bowlby?s Evolutionary Theory of Attachment. (12mark) Attachment can be described using two theories, one being Bowlby?s attachment theory which is based on an evolutionary perspective. The theory suggests that evolution has produced a behaviour that is essential to the survival to allow the passing on of genes. An infant that keeps close to their mother is more likely to survive. The traits that lead to that attachment will be naturally selected. Bowlby has the idea that attachment has evolved and it is innate as it increases the likelihood of survival and reproduction, he suggests that children are already born with this innate drive and that they were born to perform these behaviours and born to attain attachment. To enhance the survival of their offspring caregiving is also adaptive and we are born to care for our children. ...read more.


This leads to the continuity hypothesis and the view that there is a link between the early attachment and later emotional behaviour. A strength of this theory is that research appears to suggest that once the sensitive period has passed it is difficult to form attachments. Hodges and Tizard (1989) found that children who have formed no attachments had later difficulties with their peers. This therefore supports Bowlby?s concept of a sensitive period during which infants are most sensitive to the development of attachments. Another strength is that if attachment did evolve as Bowlby suggests then we would expect attachment and caregiving to be universal. Tronick et all (1992) studied an African family tribe where infants were fed by different women but slept with their own mother at night. However, despite this, after six months the children all still showed one primary attachment. ...read more.


This is a criticism because Grossman and Grossman are suggesting that there is not one particular figure as Bowlby suggests but that fathers and mothers both play a role in the development of a child and therefore they both are as important as each other. Another weakness includes the internal working model as according to Bowlby it is expected that children form similar attachments with all people because they are working from the same model. Lamb (1977) found that some children form secure relationships with their mothers and insecure relationships with their fathers. This suggests that there is more to attachment than just a sensitive response to a social releaser. Kagan (1984) found that children have an innate temperament, e.g. easy going or difficult, that influences early attachments with their caregivers and later relationships when they are adults. This is called temperament hypothesis. This means that attachments form as a result of temperament not an innate gene for attachment. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

The writer has outlined and evaluated Bowlby's Theory of Attachment and has included many of the key points. However, the writer now needs to clarify and explain in more detail, some of the points made, especially the evaluation of Bowlby's theory. This part is slightly disjointed in places and at times reaches confusing conclusions.

Marked by teacher Linda Penn 26/03/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Critical evaluation of whether certain assumptions are present in Erikson's psychosocial development theory and ...

    As has been demonstrated in the above paper, not all three assumptions in developmental theories discussed above, are clearly present in Erikson's theory, and the unique context of current South African society makes it difficult to always apply his theory, however, in specific areas there can be application.

  2. Peer reviewed

    Describe & Evaluate Freuds Theory Of Psychosexual Development

    3 star(s)

    The Superego is the last part of the personality to develop & develops in the phallic stage of psychosexual development. It is known as the morality principle as it deals with morality & guilt. An adult personality should be balanced with the ego successfully managing the needs of both id and superego.

  1. Physical, Social and Emotional Development of Children.

    * Detection by parents and carers. * Detection by midwives, early years practitioners and teachers, health visitors and general practitioners. * Some defects are first suspected when the baby/child is being examined for other reasons. Parents generally view their child as a unique individual but, nevertheless, are usually eager to compare their child to others.

  2. discuss freud's psychodynamic theory and compare and contrast to the humanistic theory

    These included creativity and openness to experience. According to Rogers each persons view of the world was completely unique and this is what shaped our lives. He believed that even when our personality is formed we can change it by reforming at any time.

  1. Describe and evaluate Piaget's theory of cognitive development

    According to Paiget, most children acquire the various forms of conservation in the same order.

  2. Factors that Affect Growth and Development.

    The id is the instinctive part of our personality that represents our desires and needs of the body. The id does not consider how meeting our desires and wants will affect others and so is often though as the selfish component.

  1. Theories of Human Development - Stages of Development

    The alternative is to become inward- looking and self-indulgent. * Ego-integrity versus despair (8) Later life. Older adults have to develop a sense of wholeness or integrity within their understanding of themselves. This might lead to a sense of meaning to life or even to what could be called 'wisdom'.

  2. Outline and Evaluate Learning Theory of Attachment. (12mark)

    Harlow experimented with the attachments formed between rhesus monkeys and surrogate mothers. Harlow created two wire mothers, one had a feeding bottle attached and the other was wrapped in cloth without any food. The theory suggests that the baby should go to the wire mother who had the food however

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work