Secure base in mother-infant relations: An example of behavioral assessment measure


  • Ivana Mihić Odsek za psihologiju, Filozofski fakultet, Novi Sad



secure base, attachment


The research presented in this paper describes the results of the first application of a new measure of the quality of secure base in mother-infant relations. The instrument is designed for assessing the quality of a secure base in relation to the mother in the situation of separation and adjustment when ?enrolling nursery. List of behaviors used for assessment includes 29 different behaviors of the child that indicate the organization of secure base. Checklist has been applied to a sample of 316 children (age 1-2), first time enrolling nursery. Behavior was observed during the initial period of adjustment, and assessment was made by trained observers- child care providers. The results indicate good psychometric properties of instrument. Cluster analysis describes three patterns of secure base organization in the mother- child dyads. Securely organized secure base was assessed in 35.3% of the sample, ambivalent base in about 26%, and avoiding in around 12% of children from the sample. A typical profile of a securely organized dyad includes highly organized behaviors that indicate a willingness to make contact with others and good reaction to the separation, maintaining physical proximity, support for the exploration, as well as behaviors indicating need for care, with a low frequency of behaviors characterized by anxiety about abandonment and avoidance.


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How to Cite

Mihić, I. (2010). Secure base in mother-infant relations: An example of behavioral assessment measure. Primenjena Psihologija, 3(4), 337–355.



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