ERIC Number: ED080193
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1973-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Determinants of Infants' Reactions to Strangers.
Morgan, George A.
This study investigated problems related to the consistency of infants' reactions to different strangers and unfamiliar behavior. Eighty infants were studied in matched groups of eight boys and eight girls each at ages 4 1/2, 6 1/2, 8 1/2, 10 1/2, and 12 1/2 months. Three sets of measures of infants' reactions to strangers were collected from these sources: (1) interviews with mothers concerning their child's usual reaction to unfamiliar people, (2) laboratory observations of infant-stranger interactions, and (3) a follow-up questionnaire completed by the mothers. In the observation sessions, each infant was approached in a standardized manner by a male and female stranger, both while the baby was on the mother's lap and while he was at a feeding table four feet away from her. In each approach episode, the stranger systematically varied his behavior, moving from sitting silently across the room to picking up the infant. Results were analyzed and discussed in terms of differences between stranger episodes, consistency across stranger episodes, universality of fear of strangers, relationship between mothers' reports and direct observations, age trends, and stranger fear as a useful variable in developmental research. (DP)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Note: Revised and expanded version of paper presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Philadelphia, Pa., March 29-April 1, 1973)