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Understanding the Interpersonal Behaviours, Rule Breaking and Violence of Young People in Custody Using an Attachment Framework.

Pennell, Amanda. (2008) Understanding the Interpersonal Behaviours, Rule Breaking and Violence of Young People in Custody Using an Attachment Framework. Doctoral thesis, University of Surrey (United Kingdom)..

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Background: Attachment theory places emphasis on the development of internal working models for understanding how views of self and other are constructed from early experiences. Research has studied how different attachment styles may be associated with different styles of interaction and rule breaking or aggressive behaviours. Attachment has been applied to custodial settings due to the nature of caregiving relationships within these settings and evidence of a high prevalence of insecure attachments. However to date, limited research has been carried out on understanding how attachment relates to behaviours displayed within these settings. Method: Forty eight young people aged 12-17 years in a secure unit completed two different self-report attachment measures (Relationship Questionnaire and Attachment Styles Questionnaire). Staff members were also asked to rate young people's attachment. Ninety six observations of daily behaviour were completed by staff (2 per young person) using the Staff Rating Scale for the Chart of Interpersonal Reactions in Closed Living Environments (CIRCLE)). This was used to determine differences in interpersonal behaviours. Recorded incidents and sanctions for rule breaking and violent behaviours were also measured. Results: Findings indicated that staff and young people rated attachment differently but ratings of dismissing and preoccupied attachment were associated with incidents of violence to others and bullying behaviours. There were also observed gender differences in the relationships between attachment and interpersonal behaviours and rule breaking and violence. Conclusions: Findings of relationships between insecurity of attachment and incidents in a secure unit may offer a useful way for understanding rule breaking and violent behaviours. However, the differences between staffs and young people’s own ratings of attachment suggest it is a complex process and clinical implications and further research are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Divisions : Theses
Authors : Pennell, Amanda.
Date : 2008
Additional Information : Thesis (Psych.D.)--University of Surrey (United Kingdom), 2008.
Depositing User : EPrints Services
Date Deposited : 06 May 2020 14:23
Last Modified : 06 May 2020 14:33

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