FAQ

1.  Do I need permission to use the RQ, RSQ, and/or Social Networks Questionnaire in my research?

No, these measures are in the public domain.  Therefore, you are welcome to use any of these questionnaires without charge in your research.  You need only reference the measures appropriately.  You are also welcome to revise or update the measures as you see fit, as long as you clearly describe the changes in your method section.

Exceptions

Clinical use:  These measures were developed for research purposes only and are not appropriate for use in individual assessments.  They have not been validated for this purpose and there are not adequate norms for the measures to allow for a confident interpretation of individual results.  That being said, some practitioners have found that self-report attachment measures are helpful as a basis of informal self-exploration and discussion.

Commercial use:  You cannot use these measures for commercial purposes.

 

2.  May I translate the attachment measures into another language?

You are welcome to use and, if necessary, translate the RQ and/or RSQ for your research. However, many researchers have asked for permission to translate these measures over the years and there is a reasonable chance that a translation is already available in your language of interest. To check, you can review published studies on adult attachment conducted with samples in your country/region of interest, as well as papers published in your language of interest.  This search can be done with PsycInfo.  A general Google search may also be helpful.  Once you identify an appropriate translation, check the website of the author of the measure and/or email the author to request a copy.

I do know that multiple translations are available in French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, and Spanish.  Translations may be available in other languages as well (e.g., Arabic, Chinese, Croatian, Danish, Dutch, Farsi, Hebrew, Hindi, Indonesian, Japanese, Romanian, Serbian, Swedish, Thai, Turkish). 

I also suggest that you consider Fraley's ECR-Revised (see Fraley's website), which has been translated into a number of languages.

 

3.  What are the norms, stability, and reliability of the RQ and RSQ?

Schmitt et al., (2004) has published cross-cultural norms for the RQ. We recommend you consult this article for normative data on the RQ.

Our lab does not have normative data for the RQ or the RSQ.  All of the studies conducted in our lab have been done with samples that are smaller than is necessary for establishing norms.  Ratings of the four attachment patterns using the RQ have shown moderate stability over an 8 month test re-test period (Scharfe & Bartholomew, 1994).  With regard to reliability of the measures, brief self-report measures generally are expected to be only moderately reliable (for a discussion of measurement issues see Griffin & Bartholomew, 1994).  If norms and reliability etc. are important to you, we recommend that you consider using one of the longer, more recent attachment measures (e.g., the ECR-R, Fraley et al., 2000).

 

4.  Can I use the RQ and/or RSQ with specialized populations such as a specific social or ethnic group?

The four-prototype, two-dimensional attachment model has been validated and applied most extensively in samples of young adults and community members (including samples of gay men).  We recommend that when the characteristics of the target population differ from the population on which the model was validated researchers undertake a pilot study to validate the model and measures with the new population.  The researcher can then evaluate the results, and make any necessary changes.

 

5.  Can I use the RQ and/or RSQ with children or adolescent samples?

The four-prototype, two-dimensional model of attachment was developed to describe the attachment characteristics of adult/young adult close peer relationships (Bartholomew, 1990; Bartholomew & Horowitz, 1991).  The RQ and RSQ were not designed to assess attachment in younger children, nor were these measures designed to assess adults' retrospective childhood attachments to their parents.  However, researchers have revised these measures and created versions to use with adolescent samples.  Dr. Elaine Scharfe at Trent University has adapted these measures for use with an adolescent population. Since the RSQ tends to evidence low internal consistency in both the adult and adolescent versions (see Griffin & Bartholomew, 1994 for a discussion), we suggest if you are using a self-report approach that you collect multiple measures (e.g., IPPA & RSQ) from multiple sources (e.g., child, parent, & teacher).

 

6.  Can the attachment measures be used to assess attachment to God, other religious figures, groups, pets, objects, etc?

The four-prototype, two-dimensional model of attachment was developed to assess adult close relationships.  Frankly, we do not know if the model, or even the concept of attachment as defined by Bowlby, is appropriate for assessing attachment in other sorts of relationships. However, for an example of extending attachment to God and other religious figures, see the work of Dr. Lee A. Kirkpatrick.

 

7.  Can I use the Peer/Family/History of Attachments Interviews?

Incorporating an attachment interview into a research design is a considerably more complex undertaking than most people realize, and, in the large majority of cases, it is not a feasible option.  It takes about 300 hours to train new coders and, subsequently, two independent coders are required for at least a substantial subsample of the target sample.  Training is also required to administer the interviews.  Moreover, training courses are no longer available.  Alternatives:

1) Use one or more self-report measures of attachment. We encourage you to do a thorough literature search and consult the work of other attachment researchers.  Several have designed attachment measures that may well match your needs better than either the Relationship Questionnaire (RQ, Bartholomew & Horowitz, 1991) or the Relationship Scales Questionnaire (RSQ, Griffin & Bartholomew, 1994).  In particular, consider the ECR-Revised (for information on this measure, see Chris Fraley’s website).

2) If you have research funds, it can sometimes be arranged for previously trained coders to code a sample of research interviews. For more information on this possibility, contact: Dr. Kim Bartholomew.