Dr. Horhota completed her B.S. in Psychology at the University of Toronto.  As an undergraduate, she explored several different aspects of developmental psychology, working in Dr. Glenn Schellenberg's lab exploring music and cognition, Dr. Susan Goldberg's lab studying infant attachment and in Dr. Alison Chasteen's lab studying how stereotypes can impact older adults' memory performance.

Dr. Horhota decided to focus her studies on the latter half of the life-span and headed south in search of warm weather and retirees.  She completed both her M.S. and PhD in Cognitive Aging at the Georgia Institue of Technology, working under the mentorship of Dr. Fredda Blanchard-Fields.  Her M.S. thesis examined how people's personal beliefs impact the social judgments they make about other people.  Her PhD examined interpersonal communication and impression formation in young, middle-aged and older adults. 

Dr. Horhota joined the Furman faculty in 2008. Since that time, her research has focused on the social judgments of older adults, and understanding the role of beliefs and stereotypes on memory performance. She has also been involved with the Conservation Culture Research Initiative through the Shi Center for Sustainability.  She has numberous peer-reviewed publications and conference presentations, many of which were co-authored with Furman students.

In 2017, Dr. Horhota was honored by her colleagues and students with the Alester G. Furman Jr. and Janie Earle Furman Award for Meritorious Advising. She was also named the Associate Dean for Mentoring and Advising at Furman.


Name Title Description


General Psychology

Comprehensive introduction to psychology as a behavioral science through a survey of historical, empirical, and theoretical perspectives of psychological research. Topics include: biological bases of behavior, development, learning, personality, cognition, perception, motivation, behavior disorders, and social psychology. Students must either participate in research projects or write summaries of published research articles.


Psychology in the Archives

The history of psychology through archival fieldwork. Students will create an online exhibit that showcases a key researcher or concept from the history of psychology based on information gathered from archives. May Experience ONLY.


European Roots of Psychology

Study the history of psychology by visiting the original laboratories and cultures that gave rise to the discipline. Includes the culture and historical context influencing early psychological theories and the relevance of these theories for contemporary psychology. May Experience ONLY.


Adulthood and Aging

Developmental changes across adulthood. Includes topics such as changes in memory functioning, physicality, caregiving, and socio-emotional processing. Selected topics related to atypical aging, such as Alzheimer's disease and living to be a centenarian will also be addressed.


Current Topics in Aging

This seminar requires students to read and discuss primary literature on current issues in the study of Adulthood and Aging. Topics may include memory, everyday problem solving, communication, caregiving, social networks and lifestyle. Group and independent research involving on-site observations and working directly with seniors will be required.


Summer Undergraduate Research


Furman Advantage Adv & Mntr

When most people think about aging they focus on declines that occur with advancing age.  In my lab, I am interested in studying areas in which adults continue to grow and develop with age. Much of my research examines how older adults' beliefs and experiences inform their social and cognitive functioning. In  the social domain, my research asks how a person's beliefs influence their perceptions of social situations and the judgments they form of others.  I am also interested in how our expectiations of older adults affect the way that we treat them.  In the cognitive domain, I am interested in learning how a person's expectations affect their cognitive performance.  For example, what memory strategies do older adults believe will positively affect their memory performance?  Do these strategies actually work? 

The overarching goal of my research is to better understand the types of behaviors that are adaptive for older adults. The hope is that understanding the underlying processes that drive behavior will not reveal when older adults will benefit from their accumulated experience and demonstrate exceptional performance.

 I have also been involved with the Shi Center for Sustainability as part of the Conservation Culture Research Initiative. My role in this collaborative team is to research beliefs about environmental issues and monitor behavioral changes on campus as Furman implements sustainability initiatives on campus.

  • Horhota, M., Mienaltowski, A., & Chen, Y. (in press). Causal attributions across the Adult Lifespan. In P. Verhaeghen & C. Hertzog (Eds.) The Oxford Handbook of Emotion, Social Cognition, and Everyday Problem Solving during Adulthood. Oxford University Press: New York, NY.
  • Blanchard-Fields, F., Hertzog, C. & Horhota, M. (2012) Violate My Beliefs? – Then You’re to Blame! Belief Content as an Explanation for Causal Attribution Biases. Psychology and Aging, 27, 324-337. doi: 10.1037/a0024423.
  • Horhota, M., Lineweaver, T., Ositelu, M., Summers, K. & Hertzog, C. (2012). Young and older adults’ beliefs about effective ways to mitigate memory decline. Psychology and Aging, 27, 293-304. doi: 10.1037/a0026088.
  • Horhota, M., Mienaltowski, A., & Blanchard-Fields, F. (2012). If only I had taken my usual route… : Age-related differences in counter-factual thinking. Aging, Neuropsychology & Cognition, 19, 339-361. DOI:10.1080/13825585.2011.615904
  • Horhota, M., Einstein, G.O., & McDaniel, M.A. (2011). Physical and Cognitive Function. In V.A. Hirth, D. Wieland & M. Dever-Bumba (Eds.) Case-based geriatrics: A global approach (pp.21-33). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
  • Hertzog, C., McGuire, C. L., Horhota, M., & Jopp, D. (2010). Does believing in “Use it or Lose it” relate to self-rated memory control, strategy use, and recall? International Journal of Aging & Human Development, 70(1), 61-87.
Georgia Institute of Technology
Georgia Institute of Technology
University of Toronto

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