Manchester Child Attachment Story Task (mcast) Three-day training workshop

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Manchester Child Attachment Story Task (MCAST)

Three-day training workshop

15-17 January 2014


Dr Ming Wai Wan, Lecturer in Developmental Psychology

Professor Jonathan Green, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Venue: University of Manchester, UK
The MCAST is a structured doll play methodology, which provides an approach to understanding attachment representations in young school-age children (4.0 - 8.5 years inclusive) to a specific caregiver. The measure is suitable for research and clinical application and is currently used in a large number of international research projects and in clinical settings by psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and others.
The MCAST is special in its focus on attachment themes in dyadic (i.e. caregiver-child) doll play. It introduces attachment-specific story stems along with affective arousal to mobilise internal representations in a way that children find accessible and engaging. The coding adapts concepts from both Strange Situation and Adult Attachment procedures to allow categorisation into classic attachment patterns (A,B,C,D with sub-classifications), as well as giving Disorganisation and Coherence scores. Because it was particularly developed for application in clinical groups, MCAST coding has a developed coding scheme for capturing attachment disorganisation. The MCAST has published validation (Green et al 2000, Goldwyn et 2000) and has been used in a variety of international studies since that time in low and high risk groups (see references at the end).
The workshop

This 3 day intensive workshop will be led by Dr Ming Wai Wan, with an introductory and ‘Q&A’-style session from Professor Jonathan Green. The workshop is suitable for professionals who wish to learn to use the MCAST for research or clinical practice.

It provides:

  • An introduction to the conceptual background to the method

  • Training to administer the task

  • Training in the coding system

  • Details of MCAST research findings and discussion on the application of the MCAST

  • Q&A session with Professor Jonathan Green, the originator of the MCAST, focusing on clinical experience and other discussion on application  

  • All necessary course materials, including manuals, coding forms and other materials

After the workshop, participants receive a certificate of attendance.
Post-workshop tests
Following the 3-day workshop, participants have the opportunity to complete their training in the MCAST to research/clinical standard. As the result of our experience and feedback, it is expected that all stages MUST be completed within 1 year from the date of the workshop.
Administration: Participants have the opportunity to submit a DVD of their own MCAST administration from which they will receive personalised feedback. If the administration reaches ‘codeable’ standard, then the participant is in a position to use the instrument in general clinical practice or to administer it in research.

Coding: A coding reliability test is posted out by request. It is necessary to pass this test in order to code, analyze and report research data, as well as to report formal MCAST findings in clinical work, for instance to courts. An accredited MCAST coding certificate is issued when the reliability test is passed.

Further information

Further information can be found on our website: and in the bibiography below. If you have specific queries, please contact Ming Wai Wan:

The fee of £750 includes the following:

  • 3-day workshop, and manuals and other training materials

  • Lunches and refreshments

  • Post-training MCAST administration check(s) and feedback(s)

  • Post-training MCAST reliability testing material and feedback

Please enquire about discounts for clinical/research teams of 3 or more participants


You can now register and pay by logging into e-store online:

Payment ensures confirmation of your place; programme information will be sent in due course. For any enquiries (including group discounts), please contact Dr Ming Wai Wan:
Select bibliography
Original validation papers:

Green, J.M, Stanley, C., Smith, V., & Goldwyn, R. (2000). A new method of evaluating attachment representations on young school age children - the Manchester Child Attachment Story Task. Attachment and Human Development, 2, 42-64.

Goldwyn, R, Green, J.M., Stanley, C., & Smith, V. (2000). The Manchester Child Attachment Story Task: Relationship with Parental AAI, SAT and Child Behaviour. Attachment and Human Development 2, 65-78.

Other papers:

Barone, L., Del Guidice, M., Fossati, A., Manaresi, F., Actis Perinitti, B., Colle, L., & Veglia, F. (2009). Psychometric Properties of the Manchester Child Attachment Story Task: an Italian multicentre study. International Journal of Behavioural Development, 33, 185-190.

Barone, L. & Lionetti, F. (2012). Attachment and social competence: A study using MCAST in low-risk Italian preschoolers. Attachment and Human Development, 14, 391-403.
Del Guidice, M. (2009). Sex, attachment and the development of reproductive strategies. Behavior and Brain Sciences, 32(1), 1-21, discussion 21-67.
Futh. A., O’Connor, T., Matias, C., Green, J., & Scott, S. (2008). Attachment Narratives and Behavioral/Emotional Symptoms in an Ethnically Diverse, At-Risk Sample. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 47, 709-718.
Green, J. (2009). Attachment and Social Impairment in Development. In Attachment: Current Focus and Future Directions; ACAMH Occasional Papers no 29. Pp 25-36. London. ACAMH.
Green, J., Stanley, C., & Peters, S. (2007). Disorganized Attachment Representations in Young School Age Children: relationship to Psychopathology and Maternal Expressed Emotion. Attachment and Human Development 9, 207-222.

Minnis, H., Green, J., O’Connor, T., & Liew, A., (2009). Reactive Attachment Disorder and Attachment Patterns: evidence for the overlap. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 50, 931-42
Pasalich, D. S., Dadds, M. R., Hawes, D. J., & Brennan, J. (2011). Do callous‐unemotional traits moderate the relative importance of parental coercion versus warmth in child conduct problems? An observational study. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry52, 1308-1315.
Wan, M.W. & Green, J. (2010). Negative and atypical story content themes depicted by children with behaviour problems. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 51, 1125-1131.

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