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Bowlby’s theory of attachment and maternal deprivation

Module 4: Physical, Cognitive and Psychosocial Changes

in Infancy and Early Childhood

PSYC 283

Human development


Infancy is the period that comprises birth at age three, while early

childhood begins at age three and ends at age six.

The genes that the infant inherits have a powerful influence on whether

he will be tall or short, thin or burly. This genetic influence interacts with

environmental influence, such as nutrition and living conditions, which

also affects overall health and well-being.


Identify the main physical, cognitive and psychosocial changes in infancy and early childhood.

Differentiate between parenting styles.

Analyze the importance of attachment in human development.


Attachment is an emotional bond between the infant and the caregiver, where both contribute to the quality of the relationship and make the bond reciprocal and lasting.

John Bowlby (1951), was a pioneer in research on the formation of affective bonds between animals. From his studies and observations of children with disorders, he became convinced of the importance of the bond between mother and baby and opposed separating them without good foster care.


Larry Harlow studied Bowlby’s theory of

attachment and maternal deprivation. To do this,

he conducted an experiment with Rhesus

monkeys (which under current ethical standards

would be unfeasible because of the cruelty it


Harlow separated some offspring from their

mothers and observed how their maternal

deprivation was expressed.


Mary Ainsworth, created

the strange situation, a

laboratory technique that

is now classic, designed to

assess attachment

patterns between infant

and adult.

¡Congratulations you have completed the theoretical

summary of this week’s topic!

Actively participate in collaborative sessions.

Remember that to successfully build your learning it is important that:

Review as many times as you require the information contained in the modules folder

(includes this presentation).

Read the reference material to clarify doubts.

Develop all activities as stated in the instructions.

Submit assignments on the date indicated through the educational platform.



1. Select three scientific studies related to attachment. Make a one-paragraph summary of each of the selected resources.

2. Discuss the importance of attachment in childhood or early childhood and its repercussions (positive or negative). You can cite examples to illustrate your point.

3. Please give your opinion on the  findings and explain them in your own words. Do you agree with the conclusions of the studies? Explain your approach.

Contribute a minimum of 5 pages. It should include at least 3 academic sources, formatted and cite in APA.

Be sure to review the  academic expectations  for your submission.

Submission Instructions:

· Submit your assignment by 11:59 PM Eastern on Sunday.

· Review the rubric to determine how your assignment will be graded.

· Your assignment will be run through TurnItIn to check for plagiarism. 

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