The Recorded Interaction Task: A Validation Study of a New Observational Tool to Assess Mother-Infant Bonding
AuthorEdwards, H; Buisman-Pijlman, FTA; Esterman, A; Phillips, C; Orgeig, S; Gordon, A
Source TitleJournal of Midwifery and Womens Health
University of Melbourne Author/sBuisman-Pijlman, Femke
AffiliationMelbourne School of Professional and Continuing Education
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsEdwards, H., Buisman-Pijlman, F. T. A., Esterman, A., Phillips, C., Orgeig, S. & Gordon, A. (2021). The Recorded Interaction Task: A Validation Study of a New Observational Tool to Assess Mother-Infant Bonding. JOURNAL OF MIDWIFERY & WOMENS HEALTH, 66 (2), pp.249-255. https://doi.org/10.1111/jmwh.13217.
Access StatusOpen Access
INTRODUCTION: Mother-infant bonding describes the early emotional connectedness between a mother and her infant. The quality of the mother-infant bond early in life is related to the subsequent quality of the child's attachment, the quality of further mother-infant interactions, and various other social outcomes across the child's life span. The Recorded Interaction Task (RIT) was developed to assess mother-infant bonding using observational methods in a naturalistic but standardized setting, thus addressing shortcomings of previous self-report tools. The RIT focusses on the common interaction between mother and infant (aged 2 to 5 months old), during a diaper (nappy) change. The interaction is video recorded and later assessed. The RIT must be validated before it can be used to assess mother-infant bonding in future research or in clinical practice. METHODS: Face and content validity of the RIT were assessed by a panel of 6 experts in bonding and assessment of maternal and infant behavior. The RIT and self-reported Postpartum Bonding Questionnaire (PBQ) were administered to 15 mother-infant dyads with the correlation between their scores used to assess convergent validity. RESULTS: Acceptable face and content validity of the RIT was demonstrated. A weak correlation between the RIT and PBQ (r = -0.13) and their subscales (r = -0.22) were observed. A strong correlation between the RIT maternal behavior and infant behavior subscales was recorded (r = 0.69). DISCUSSION: The RIT appears to be a viable tool for the observational assessment of mother-infant bonding. Reliability testing and piloting will be required before the RIT can be used in future research or clinical practice.
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