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Circle of Security Intervention: Enhancing Attachment in Early Parent-Child Relationships

by Bert Powell, Glen Cooper, Kent Hoffman and Bob Marvin Guilford Publications
Pub Date:
Pbk 396 pages
AU$58.99 NZ$60.00
Product Status: In Stock Now
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Presenting both a theoretical foundation and proven strategies for helping caregivers become more attuned and responsive to their young children's emotional needs (ages 0–5), this is the first comprehensive presentation of the Circle of Security (COS) intervention. The book lucidly explains the conceptual underpinnings of COS and demonstrates the innovative attachment-based assessment and intervention strategies in rich clinical detail, including three chapter-length case examples. Reproducible forms and handouts can be downloaded and printed in a convenient 8 1/2'' x 11'' size. COS is an effective research-based program that has been implemented throughout the world with children and parents experiencing attachment difficulties.  

The authors are corecipients of the 2013 Bowlby–Ainsworth Award, presented by the New York Attachment Consortium, for developing and implementing COS.

COURSE USE: May serve as a supplemental text in graduate-level courses in clinical psychology, psychiatristy, social work, and counselling.


Foreword, Charles H. Zeanah, Jr.I. Attachment in Early Caregiving Relationships1. Hidden in Plain Sight: The Critical Importance of Secure Attachment2. The Circle of Security: Understanding a Child’s Needs for a Safe Haven and a Secure Base for Exploration3. Being-With: Meeting the Child’s Needs through Relationship4. Limited Circles: Insecurity and the Power of Adaptation5. Shark Music: How State of Mind Shapes Caregiving6. Completing the Circle II. The Circle of Security Intervention7. Observing the Relationship8. The Interactional Assessment: Differential Diagnosis and Identification of the Linchpin Struggle9. Understanding State of Mind and Defensive Processes through Core Sensitivities10. The Parent Perception Assessment: Using the Circle of Security Interview to Enhance Treatment Efficacy11. Treatment Principles and Planning12. The Circle of Security Intervention ProtocolIII. Case Examples13. Laura and Ashley14. Ana and Sam15. Shelly and Jacob

“The summary of attachment theory presented through this new framework is insightful and accessible. The discussion of the intervention itself and case studies make this book a must read…. Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty and professionals; general readers.”  —Choice Reviews  


“Brilliant, creative, and transformative are words that don't fully capture the true power of this approach. The authors have woven attachment theory into a research-based, innovative intervention that helps infants and their parents move toward security and a life of resilience and well-being. Soak in the wisdom of these masters and you'll be forever grateful—I certainly am. The book provides an intricate yet practical therapeutic exploration infused with the dedication and insights of its authors.”  —Daniel J. Siegel, MD, Department of Psychiatry, UCLA School of Medicine; author of Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain  


“What a beautiful book! Insightful, compassionate, emotionally moving, crystal clear, eminently useful—this book offers the best combination of excellent science, deep clinical experience, and coherent guidance for therapists that I have ever encountered. A 'must read' for anyone who wishes to understand and promote effective parenting.”  —Phillip R. Shaver, PhD, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology, University of California, Davis   


“In this important book, the authors provide a masterful translation of complex concepts into an approach to enhancing attachments that makes intuitive sense and is supported by effectiveness research. The sensitive use of video enables parents to see themselves in a new light and gain awareness of how they enact their own early experiences in raising their children. COS frees the parent to respond to the child's needs for protection and support in ways that build trust and promote self-confidence. The gems of wisdom coupled with practical intervention strategies are a gift for any clinician seeking to enhance parenting and prevent child maltreatment.”  —Alicia F. Lieberman, PhD, Irving B. Harris Endowed Chair in Infant Mental Health, University of California, San Francisco  


“COS is solidly based on attachment theory and research. With a surprising combination of simplicity, clinical relevance, and academic rigor, this book effectively teaches the reader what children need for secure attachment and clarifies what might stand in the way of parents being able to respond to these needs. For clinicians and students alike, the book brings to life what is viewed, both nationally and internationally, as the cutting edge of early parent-child intervention programs.”  —Jude Cassidy, PhD, Distinguished Scholar-Teacher and Professor of Psychology, University of Maryland, College Park


“In my view, the Circle of Security (COS) is an approach that has changed the game….This intervention translates attachment research more meaningfully and more directly than anything we have seen before.”  —from the Foreword by Charles H. Zeanah, Jr., MD, Department of Psychiatry, Tulane University School of Medicine
Bert Powell, MA, Glen Cooper, MA, and Kent Hoffman, RelD, have devoted their Spokane, Washington, clinical practice of more than 30 years to translating complex clinical insights and developmental research into straightforward and accessible protocols for use with families. During the last two decades they have focused specifically on the creation and dissemination of the Circle of Security (COS), for which each has received the Washington Governor's Award for Innovation in Prevention, among other honors.

Bob Marvin, PhD, served as principal investigator on the original COS study and participated in the development of COS. He is Founder and Director of the Mary Ainsworth Attachment Clinic in Charlottesville, Virginia.