Needed: mothers and babies at play

Masters student Carrie Kruck

Masters student Carrie Kruck
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Thursday, 8 August 2002

ADELAIDE mothers are being asked to volunteer to be videotaped interacting with their babies as part of a new study by the University of Adelaide looking at mothers' behaviour.

The study aims to improve our understanding of how a mother's life experience affects the quality of the way she bonds with her child. The research may better inform parents about the quality of their interactions with their children in early life.

The study is being conducted by the University's Department of Psychiatry at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in association with the Department of Psychology.

"This study is looking specifically at how life experience impacts on the mother-child relationship," says Masters student Carrie Kruck, who is supervised by Dr Clara Bookless (Psychiatry) and Dr Jane Blake- Mortimer (Psychology).

"The theory is that in order to have a healthy development, to be able to form relationships in their lives and develop security in themselves, children need to form a strong, positive bond with a significant caretaker. It's believed that the way a caretaker interacts with the infant is one of the things that impacts upon the bond that's formed."

Ms Kruck is seeking 60 women from the Adelaide metropolitan area, and their babies (aged 6-24 months), to take part in the study.

The mothers will be asked to fill out a questionnaire, will be given a brief interview, and will be videotaped interacting with their baby. The questionnaire can be filled out at home, while the videotaping and interviews will be conducted at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

"This study isn't about looking at mothers and saying 'what are they doing wrong?', it's about trying to understand what are the things that influence good relationships with their kids or what things might make it more difficult for them. It's about how we can better support mothers and learn more about the relationships with their child."

For more information or to join the study, phone Carrie on 8222 6515.


Contact Details

Dr Clara Bookless
Department of Psychiatry
Business: +61 8 8222 6515

Dr Jane Blake-Mortimer
Department of Psychology
University of Adelaide
Business: +61 8 8313 5693