TitleEarned security within an attachment intervention
NameJoran, Raelene (author), Boxer, Paul (chair), Kressel, Kenneth (internal member), Siegel, Harold I. (internal member), Van de Walle, Gretchen (internal member), Reich, Warren (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - Newark,
DescriptionBowlby’s theorized “internal working model” (IWM) is an unconscious schema based largely on the way in which people are treated by important caretakers during the first years of life and comprised of views of self and other in relationship. Although the IWM is changeable, existing research cannot explain how the IWM is changed. An implicit measure of the view of self was developed in Study 1 which was demonstrated to relate inversely to attachment anxiety. In Study 2, participants high in attachment anxiety received a 6-week psychoeducational intervention using attachment as pedagogy and demonstrated several attachment-related improvements, including a trend toward a significant difference on change in implicit security between the Attachment Group and two control groups, with every participant receiving the intervention increasing in implicit security. Study 3, an exploratory semester-long intervention in Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF) students, reconceptualized attachment insecurity as self-focus, and demonstrated several significant findings among those receiving the intervention compared to those in a non-intervention control group. Study 4 demonstrated a significant effect in EOF freshmen receiving the attachment intervention on increasing implicit security from pre-test to follow-up compared to those in a control condition. Although no significant effect of condition on change in attachment anxiety was demonstrated, anxiety moderated several outcomes, e.g., common humanity, personal distress, and empathy at post-test, reflective function at post-test and follow-up, and effect of need for cognition on outcomes including changes in self-view and empathy at post-test. Attachment avoidance moderated the significant effect of condition on the decrease in avoidance at post-test among experimental participants high in avoidance. Findings suggest IWM change first occurs unconsciously after improvement in related constructs including emotional intelligence. A new three-dimensional attachment framework is proposed, based on prior research and theory. Unlike the existing hierarchical attachment network (Collins & Read, 1994), the proposed framework models attachment change by reorienting one’s focus from self to other. This new theoretical framework is supported by several findings, including a significant effect of condition on empathy among participants high in attachment anxiety preceding the significant increase in implicit security at follow-up. Implications for educational policy are discussed.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references
Noteby Raelene Joran
CollectionGraduate School - Newark Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.