Faculty Advisor

Skorinko, Jeanine LM

Project Center

Costa Rica


Social support is an effective method of reducing symptoms of acute stress, and is thought to have greater impact when the individual feels secure in the relationship. This study investigated the physiological reactions of stress, here heart rate variability, skin conductance, and hand temperature, as mediated by attachment strength, within the context of a romantic relationship. Participants experienced a stressor either in the presence or absence of their romantic partner, and then the reverse. Analysis showed no significant interaction between the difference in participants’ physiological data (change-score), attachment strength, and condition stressor, though upon bootstrapping the original data, the change-score was shown to vary significantly as a function of attachment style.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

December 2015

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Social Science and Policy Studies