George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Holly Matto, PhD, LCSW-C

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Dr. Matto (PhD, University of Maryland; MSW, University of Michigan) is an Associate Professor in the College of Health and Human Services Department of Social Work at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. She has over 15 years of research and practice experience in the field of addiction science and has conducted treatment intervention studies with diverse clinical populations. She conducted a clinical trial with Inova Fairfax Hospital and Georgetown University’s Center for Functional and Molecular Imaging that used neuroimaging technology to examine functional brain change associated with behavioral health interventions for adults with substance-use disorder. She is currently working on the prototype development of a wearable device to manage stimulus cues and reduce drug relapse by detecting neurophysiological reactivity and delivering a device-activated personalized music and imagery intervention (a STEAM-H: Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math – Health Initiative).


PhD, Social Work, University of Maryland (2000)

MSW, Interpersonal Practice, University of Michigan (1996)

BFA, Art Therapy, Ohio University (1994)


Research Interests

  • Biobehavioral Health Wearables
  • Intervention Research
  • Clinical Trials
  • Substance Abuse
  • Art Therapy
  • Neuroscience 
  • Community Health

Recent Publications

Gibson, S., Matto, H. C., & DeMonte, A. (2017). Should they stay or should they go? Greek housing and college campuses. Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions, (published online January 18, 2017).

Matto, H. C., & Cleaveland, C. (2016). Using a Social-spatial Lens to Understand the Impact of Poverty on Trauma and Addiction Recovery Trajectories. Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions: Special Issue: Substance Use & Violence, 16(1-2), 7-23.

Matto, H. C., Tompkins, C. J., Ihara, E. S., Inoue, M., & Byrd, A. (2015). Results from a Music, Imagery, and Movement (MiM) Treatment Intervention in a Long-Term Care Facility. Families in Society, 96(4), 277-283.

Matto, H. C. (2015). Bioehavioral Response Redirection: Innovations to Activate Personalized Recovery Cues and Decrease Relapse Risk. End Note: Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions, 15, 450-453.

Spera, C., & Matto, H. C., & Travis, W. (2015). Research Note: Satisfaction with Air Force Way of Life: Pre- and post-9/11. Armed Forces & Society, 41(4), 734-741.

Matto, H. C., Hadjiyane, M. C., Kost, M., Marshall, J. K, Wiley, J., Strolin-Goltzman, J., Khatiwada, M., & VanMeter, J. W. (2014). fMRI clinical trial of a dual – processing treatment protocol for substance-dependent adults. Research on Social Work Practice, 24(6), 659-669.

Matto, H. C, Strolin-Goltzman, J., Hadjiyane, M., VanMeter, J., Kost, M., Marshall, J. K, & Wiley, J. (2013). Clinical trial of an innovative dual-processing group therapy relapse prevention protocol conducted in a community-based setting. Journal of Groups in Addiction & Recovery, 8(4), 240-261.

Matto, H. C., Strolin-Goltzman, J., & Mogro-Wilson, C. (2010). Dual Processing Treatment Modality: An innovative treatment to decrease physiological craving in substance abusers. Journal of Groups in Addiction & Recovery, 5(2), 113-123.

Matto, H. C., & Strolin-Goltzman, J. (2010). Integrating social neuroscience and social work: Innovations for advancing practice-based research. Social Work, 55(2), 147-156.

Spera, C., Wentzel, K., & Matto, H. C. (2009). Parental aspirations for their children’s educational attainment: Relations to ethnicity, parental education, children’s academic performance, and parental perceptions of school climate. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 38, 1140-1152.


Honors & Awards

Fellow of the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR), 2017, Society for Social Work and Research

Schools & Programs