Methods of assessing attachment in infancy and childhood: From observation of behaviours to exploration of mental representations

Maite Román Rodríguez


The methods of assessing attachment have proliferated in recent years and the classic approach based on the observation of behaviour has evolved into a methodology focusing on representational perspective. Significant considerations in the exploration of attachment in infancy and childhood and the main measures of assessing attachment are described in this paper. Attachment behaviours have been examined primarily through separation-reunion procedures, the methodology Q-set and the attachment diary. The main methodologies of exploration of the internal working models of attachment are story stems, pictured situations, drawings of the family and interviews. Knowledge and proper use of these measures in  research and clinical practice will allow us to further advance the understanding of emotional development in infancy and childhood.


measurement of attachment; behaviours of attachment; internal working; models of attachment



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