The Adult Attachment Interview and self-reports of attachment style: an empirical rapprochement

J Pers Soc Psychol. 2007 Apr;92(4):678-697. doi: 10.1037/0022-3514.92.4.678.


Although 10 studies have been published on the empirical overlap of the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI) and measures of self-reported attachment style, results in this literature have been inconsistently interpreted in narrative reviews. This report was designed as a rapprochement of the AAI and attachment style literatures and includes 3 studies. Study 1 (combined N = 961) is a meta-analytic review showing that by J. Cohen's (1992) criteria (mean r = .09), the association between AAI security and attachment style dimensions is trivial to small. Study 2 (N = 160) confirms meta-analytic results with state-of-the-art assessments of attachment security and also examines attachment dimensions in relation to the Big 5 personality traits. Finally, Study 3 is an investigation of 50 engaged couples that shows that developmental and social psychological measures of attachment security predict somewhat distinct--though theoretically anticipated--aspects of functioning in adult relationships.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Empirical Research*
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic*
  • Object Attachment*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*