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Journal Article

Citation

Dujardin A, Bosmans G, De Raedt R, Braet C. Dev. Psychol. 2015; 51(10): 1341-1350.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2015, American Psychological Association)

DOI

10.1037/a0039500

PMID

26376289

Abstract

There is increasing interest in attachment-related social information processing, including children's attentional processing of information regarding the attachment figure. Previous research in middle childhood revealed evidence for a stronger attentional focus toward mother in children with less secure attachment expectations. However, the implication of this attentional focus for children's exploration has not been explored. This study tested the hypothesis that this attentional focus toward mother occurs at the expense of attentional exploration of the environment. Ninety children, aged 8-12, completed questionnaires assessing trust in maternal support, watched a video that induced mild fear of dogs, and completed a dot probe computer task assessing attentional processing of simultaneously presented pictures of mother and pictures of the threatening stimulus (i.e., dogs). Less trust in maternal support was linked to a stronger attentional focus toward the mother pictures versus the dog pictures. These results suggest that, in the presence of mother, children with more secure attachment expectations are better able to freely explore a mildly threatening environment. (PsycINFO Database Record


Language: en

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