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Evaluate 2 theories of attachment.

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Q) Evaluate 2 theories of attachment. There are two types of attachment theories one is learning theory and the other one is Evolutionary theory. Learning theory suggest that attachment is learned process (nurture ) which is based on the rewards of feeding and comfort giving by their caregiver, it is known as cupboard love theory because it claims that attachment is based on food and comfort . Learning theory is also based on the principles of operant and classical conditioning. The Assumption of learning theory is all behaviour is learned rather than innate and this includes attachment through classical or operant conditioning, babies at birth are like blank slates, focuses on what people do, not what they think and based on consequences ? a pleasant outcome (reward ) ...read more.


are automatically linked to an unconditioned stimulus (food). For this conditioning to occur the feeding was accompanied by a bell being rung and this was repeated a number of times .Salivation occurred in the dogs when the bell was rung. Each had become conditioned ?salivation a conditioned response to the ringing of a bell ? a conditioned stimulus. The animal has learned a new stimulus-response link. Another classical conditioning explaining attachment is when babies are born with reflex responses these are automatic. Food as a stimulus produces a response of pleasure in infants ? an unconditioned stimulus (food) produces an unconditioned response (pleasure). Conditioning occurs since the mother, a neutral stimulus at first, becomes associated with the pleasure associated with the food ? the mother = pleasure ? a conditioned stimulus ? producing the conditioned response of pleasure and comfort. ...read more.


strengthened); behaviour which is not reinforced tends to die out-or be extinguished (i.e. weakened).Skinner studied operant conditioning by conducting experiments using animals which he placed in a ?Skinner Box? which was similar to Thorndike?s puzzle box. Skinner thought the term operant conditioning means roughly changing of behaviour by the use of reinforcement which is given after the desired response. Skinner identified three types of responses or operant that can follow behaviour. One is Neutral operants - responses from the environment that neither increase nor decrease the probability of a behaviour being repeated. Second one was Reinforces- responses from the environment that increase the probability of a behaviour being repeated. Reinforcers can be either positive or negative. The third one was Punishers ? response from the environment that decreases the likelihood of a behaviour being repeated. Punishment weakens behaviour. ...read more.

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Response to the question

This is a perfect example of what can happen when the candidate does not pay attention to the question. The command word here is "Evaluate", and it asks for "two" theories to be evaluated, so the marks are awarded mostly ...

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Response to the question

This is a perfect example of what can happen when the candidate does not pay attention to the question. The command word here is "Evaluate", and it asks for "two" theories to be evaluated, so the marks are awarded mostly for AO2 (critical evaluation) but also for AO1 (knowledge and understanding), although the latter objective holds considerably less marks and therefore does not require so much to be written about it. This question should be worth about 12 marks, with 6 marks given for each theory that feature a balanced discussion and analysis.

The candidate provides extensive detail about one theory of attachment (Behavioural Conditioning), but neglects to mention a second beyond the first paragraph, where they mention "Evolutionary Theory". As a result, a maximum of 6/12 marks can be obtained here. However, the candidate is not clear nor precise enough when talking about their evaluation and makes some errors which mightn't look much, but actually suggest that there is not a full understanding of behavioural conditioning (more on this in Level of Analysis). So the candidate here can expect to earn 1/2 marks for the small amount of AO1 required (though what is written is far superfluous and more time should've been dedicated to writing a more accurate evaluation and only 1/4 marks for evaluation (plus 0/6 for the second theory which is not written about) making a total of only 2/12 marks for this answer, because they neglect to address the question correctly.

Level of analysis

The Level of Analysis is generally quite poor. Few strengths and weaknesses are identified, and they are not fully explained, so the candidate can only earn marks for the key words they drop in. The candidate is often unclear and not wholly accurate - "Punishment weakens behaviour" is erroneous. Behaviour is strengthened by all reinforcement. To refrain from doing something as a result of negative reinforcement or punishment still sees a change in behaviour, so candidates are reminded that the need for precision and accuracy is important.

Quality of writing

The Quality of Written Communication is poor for both an English perspective and a Psychology perspective. The first paragraph particularly, requires someone with a good level of knowledge about Psychology to piece together what is being said as it simply doesn't follow grammatical norms. The spelling is not so much of an issue, and neither is punctuation. The candidates use of psychology terminology is fair, if a little erroneous in parts. I recommend familiarising yourself with familiarising

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Reviewed by sydneyhopcroft 11/08/2012

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