Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology vol:36 issue:4 pages:557-567
The internal working model of attachment can be conceptualized as a cognitive schema to provide testable hypotheses. Thus, this study predicts a relationship between attachment and attentional bias toward the mother using an emotional modification of the exogenous cueing task. The content of the cues (mother vs. unknown women) and the duration of the presentation of the cues (200 msec vs. 1, 000 msec) were varied. The test was administered to 40 nonreferred children (9 to 13 years of age), divided into high- and low-secure attachment groups. As predicted, low-secure children directed their attention more quickly toward mother than toward unknown women at later stages of attentional processing (long presentation), Furthermore, low-secure children showed more maintained attention toward mother compared to unknown women and showed significantly more maintained attention toward mother compared with high-secure children.