College of Health and Human Services
George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Holly Matto, PhD, LCSW-C

Associate Professor

Contact Information MORE LESS

Download CV

staff menu:


Dr. Holly Matto 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 combined research and practice experience in the field of addiction, and has conducted treatment intervention studies with diverse clinical populations. She conducted a clinical trial 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 sensory-based recovery cue intervention (a STEAM-H: Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Math – Health Initiative).  She enjoys working on research teams with complementary expertise in the area of designing, developing and evaluating mobile technologies for recovery support and behavioral health symptom management in community settings.  


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

Matto, H.C., Seshaiyer, P., Newcomb, A., Rothberg, S., & Lopez-Piper, A.  (2019). A novel mobile biobehavioral regulation system for personalized trauma recovery support. Patient Experience Journal, 6(2). Special Issue July:  the role of technology and innovation in patient experience. (in press).

Newcomb, A., Moore, L.G., & Matto, H. C. (2018). Family-centered caregiving from hospital to home: Coping with trauma and building capacity with the HOPE for families model. Patient Experience Journal, 5(1).

Matto, H. C., & Seshaiyer, P.  (2018). Harnessing the Power of the Recovering Brain to Promote Recovery Commitment and Reduce Relapse Risk. Social Work in Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research, 9(2), 341-358

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