Relations among different measures of maternal sensitivity were assessed longitudinally by examining maternal behavior when infants were 4 months, 15 months, and 2.5 years. At each time period, two measures of maternal sensitivity were scored (4 months: maternal vocal and smiling contingency in face-to-face interactions; 15 months: maternal scaffolding and following of infants' play within joint attention; 2.5 years: maternal facilitative and collaborative play within joint attention). When infants were 2.5 years, attachment security was assessed. Mothers' scores on each maternal sensitivity measure within each time period were correlated with their maternal sensitivity scores in another time period, suggesting individual measures of maternal sensitivity were tapping similar aspects across the time periods. Maternal vocal contingency at 4 months was the strongest predictor of infants' attachment security over 2 years later.
Copyright 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.