The Heller School for Social Policy and Management

Margie Lachman

Minnie and Harold Fierman Professor of Psychology

Margie  Lachman's photo


Office: Lemberg Hall 107
Phone: 781-736-3255
Brandeis Directory


Life-span development; midlife; aging; sense of control; adult personality; memory; health-promoting behaviors; intervention research to improve cognitive and physical functioning and health.
link to website:


  • PSYC 31a - Personality
  • PSYC 37a - The Psychology of Adult Development and Aging
  • PSYC 130b - Life Span Development: Early and Middle Adulthood


  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Boston University

Margie Lachman

Minnie and Harold Fierman Professor of Psychology


Professor Lachman's research is in the area of lifespan development with a focus on midlife and later life. Her current work is aimed at identifying psychosocial (e.g., sense of control, social support) and behavioral (e.g., physical exercise) factors that can protect against, minimize, or compensate for declines in cognition (e.g., memory) and health. She is conducting studies to examine long-term predictors of psychological and physical health, laboratory-based experiments to identify psychological and physiological processes involved in aging-related changes, and intervention studies to enhance performance and promote adaptive functioning.

Awards and Honors

  • Distinguished Career Contribution to Gerontology Award, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Gerontological Society of America (2015)
  • Bronfman Philanthropies Brandeis-Israel Collaborative Research Grant (2014 - 2015)
  • Residential Fellowship (2009-2010), Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University (2009 - 2010)
  • American Psychological Association, Division 20-Adult Development and Aging, Distringuished Research Achievement Award (2003)
  • Editor, Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences (2000 - 2003)
  • Archstone Foundation Award for Excellence in Program Innovation, American Public Health Association (1998)
  • Fellow, American Psychological Association, Division on Adult Development and Aging (1994)
  • Fellow, Gerontological Society of America (1992)
  • Member, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Successful Midlife Development (1989 - 2000)


  • Dixon, R.A., Lachman, M.E.. "(2019, in press) Risk and protective factors in cognitive aging: Advances in assessment, prevention, and promotion of alternative pathways.." The aging brain.. Ed. G. Samanez-Larkin (Ed.). Washington DC:: American Psychological Association, 2019 (forthcoming)
  • Hamm, J. M., Heckhausen, J., Shane, J., Infurna, F. J., & Lachman, M. E.. "Engagement with six major life domains during the transition to retirement: Stability and change for better or worse." Psychology and Aging (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Hong, J. H., Charles, S. T., Lee, S., & Lachman, M. E.. "Perceived changes in life satisfaction from the past, present and to the future: A comparison of U.S. and Japan.." Psychology and Aging (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Liu, Y., & Lachman, M. E. "Socioeconomic status and parenting style from childhood: Long-term effects on cognitive function in middle and later adulthood." Journal of Gerontology: Social Sciences (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Liu, Y., & Lachman, M. E.. "Physical and cognitive activity as mediators of the relationship between education and cognition in later life." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Lo, O.-Y., Conboy, L. A., Rukhadze, A., Georgetti, C., Gagnon, M. M., Manor, B., .Lachman, M.E. , Lipsitz, L, Wayne, P. M.. "In the eyes of those who were randomized: Perceptions of disadvantaged older adults in a Tai Chi trial.." The Gerontologist (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Rickenbach, E., Agrigoroaei, S., Hughes, M., & Lachman, M. E. "Control beliefs and susceptibility to the promises of memory improvement." Applied Cognitive Psychology. (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Robinson, S. A., Bisson, A. N., Hughes, M. L., Ebert, J. & Lachman, M. E.. "Time for change: Using implementation intentions to promote physical activity in a randomised pilot trial." Psychology & Health. (2019). (forthcoming)
  • Robinson, S. A., & Lachman, M. E.. "Daily control beliefs and cognition: The mediating role of physical activity." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, Series B (2018). (forthcoming)
  • Agrigoroaei, S., Robinson, S. A., Hughes, M. L., Rickenbach, E. H., & Lachman, M. E. .. "Cognition at midlife: Antecedents and consequences.." Oxford Handbook of Integrated Health Science:. Ed. C. D. Ryff & R. F. Krueger (Eds.),. Oxford University Press, 2019
  • Levine, C. S., Miller, G. E., Lachman, M. E., Seeman, T. E., & Chen, E.. "Early life adversity and adult health.." Oxford handbook of integrated health science. Ed. C. D. Ryff & R. F. Krueger (Eds.),. Oxford University Press., 2019
  • Drewelies, J., Agrigoroaei, S., Lachman, M. E., & Gerstorf, D.. "Older adults in the US report fewer constraints nowadays than those 18 years ago, but beliefs about one’s abilities are diminished across adults of all ages.." Developmental Psychology 54. (2018): 1408-1425.
  • Elliot, A. J., Turiano, N. A., Infurna, F. J., Lachman, M. E., & Chapman, B. P.. "Lifetime trauma, perceived control, and all-cause mortality: Results from the Midlife in the United States Study." Health Psychology 37. (2018): 262-270..
  • Hughes, M. L., & Lachman, M. E. "Social comparisons of health and cognitive functioning contribute to changes in subjective age." Journals of Gerontology, Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 73. (2018): 816-824.
  • Hughes, M. L., Agrigoroaei, S., Jeong, M., Bruzzese, M., & Lachman, M. E.. "Change in cognitive performance from midlife into old age: Findings from the Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) Study." Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, 24. (2018): 805-820.
  • Lachman, M. E., Lipsitz, L., Lubben, J., Castaneda-Sceppa, C., & Jette, A.. "When adults don’t exercise: Behavioral strategies to increase physical activity in sedentary middle-aged and older adults.." Innovation in Aging 2. (2018): 1-12.
  • Matz-Costa, C., Lubben, J., Lachman, M. E., Lee, H. N., & Choi, Y. J.. "A pilot randomized trial of an intervention to enhance the health-promoting effects of older adults' activity portfolios: The Engaged4Life program." Journal of Gerontological Social Work 61. (2018): 792-816.
  • Robinson, S. A., & Lachman, M. E. "Perceived control and cognition in adulthood: The mediating role of physical activity." Psychology and Aging 33. (2018): 769-781.
  • Segal-Karpas, D., Ayalon, L., & Lachman, M. E.. "Loneliness and depressive symptoms: The moderating role of the transition into retirement." Aging and Mental Health 22. 135-140 (2018).
  • Segel-Karpas, D., & Lachman, M. E.. "Social contact and cognitive functioning: The moderating role of personality.." Journals of Gerontology, Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 73. (2018): 974-984.
  • Segel-Karpas, D., Ayalon, L., & Lachman, M. E. "Retirement and depressive symptoms: A 10-year cross-lagged analysis." Psychiatry Research 269. (2018): 565-570.
  • Wayne, P. M., Gagnon, M. M., Macklin, E. A., Travison, T., Manor, B., Lachman, M., Lipsitz, L. A.. "The Mind-Body Wellness in Supportive Housing (Mi-WiSH) Study: Design and rationale of a cluster randomized controlled trial of Tai Chi in senior housing.." Contemporary Clinical Trials 60. (2018): 96-104.
  • van Reekum CM, Schaefer SM, Lapate RC, Norris CJ, Tun PA, Lachman ME, Ryff CA, Davidson RJ.. "Aging is associated with a prefrontal lateral-medial shift during picture-induced negative affect." Social Cognition and Affective Neuroscience 13. (2018): 156-163.
  • Agrigoroaei, S., Attardo, A. L., & Lachman, M. E.. "Stress and subjective age: Those with greater financial stress look older.." Research on Aging 39. (2017): 1075-1099.
  • Brisbon, N., & Lachman, M. E.. "Dispositional mindfulness and memory problems: The role of perceived stress and sleep quality." Mindfulness 8. (2017): 379-386.
  • Hostinar, C. E., Davidson, R. J., Graham, E. K., Mroczek, D. K., Lachman, M. E., Seeman, T. E., van Reekum, C. M., & Miller, G. E. "Frontal brain asymmetry, childhood maltreatment, and low-grade inflammation at midlife." Psychoneuroendocrinology 75. (2017): 152-163.
  • Karlamangla, A. S., Lachman, M. E., Han, W. J., Huang, M. H., & Greendale, G. A.. "Evidence for Cognitive Aging in Midlife Women: Study of Women's Health Across the Nation.." PLoS ONE 12. (2017): e0169008.
  • Robinson, S. A. & Lachman, M. E. "Perceived control and aging: A mini review and directions for future research." Gerontology 63. (2017): 435-442.
  • Sullivan, A. N., & Lachman, M. E.. "Behavior change with fitness technology in sedentary adults: A review of the evidence for increasing physical activity.." Frontiers in Public Health, 4. (2017).
  • Zahodne, L. B., Manly, J. J. , Smith, J., Seeman, T., & Lachman, M. "Socioeconomic, health, and psychosocial mediators of racial disparities in cognition in early, middle, and late adulthood.." Psychology and Aging 32. (2017): 118-130.
  • Crowley, O. V., Kimhy, D., McKinley, P. S., Burg, M. M., Schwartz, J. E., Lachman, M. E., . . . Sloan, R. P.. "Vagal recovery from cognitive challenge moderates age-related deficits in executive functioning.." Research on Aging. 38. (2016): 504-525.
  • Grzywacz, J. G. Segel-Karpas, D., & Lachman, M. E.. "Workplace exposures and cognitive function during adulthood: Evidence from the National Survey of Midlife Development and the O*NET." Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 58. (2016): 535-541.
  • Robinson, S., Rickenbach, E. H., & Lachman, M. E. "Self-regulatory strategies in daily life: Selection optimization and compensation and everyday memory problems." International Journal of Behavioral Development, 40. (2016): 126-136.
  • Robinson, Stephanie & Lachman, Margie. "Perceived control and behavior change: A personalized approach.." Perceived Control: Theory, Research, and Practice in the First 50 Years.. Ed. In F. Infurna & J. Reich (Eds.),. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016. pp. 201-227.
  • Song, J., Mailick, M.R., Greenberg, J.S., Ryff, C.D., & Lachman, Margie E.. "Cognitive aging in parents of children with disabilities." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences 71. (2016): 821-830.
  • Teshale, S., & Lachman, M. E. (2016). "Managing daily happiness: The relationship between selection, optimization and compensation (SOC) strategies and well-being in adulthood." Psychology and Aging 31,. (2016): 687-692.
  • Galambos, N. L., Fang, S., Krahn, H. J., Johnson, M. D., & Lachman, M. E.. "Up, not down: The age curve in happiness from early adulthood to midlife in two longitudinal studies.." Developmental Psychology, 51. (2015): 1664-1671.
  • Hahn, Elizabeth., & Lachman, Margie. E.. "Everyday experiences of memory problems and control: The adaptive role of selective optimization with compensation in the context of memory decline." Aging, Neuropsychology and Cognition 22. (2015): 25-41.
  • Hostinar, C. E., Lachman, M. E., Mroczek, D. K., Seeman, T. E., & Miller, G. E.. "Additive contributions of childhood adversity and recent stressors to inflammation at midlife: Findings from the MIDUS study.." Developmental Psychology 51. (2015): 1630-1644.
  • Lachman, Margie, Agrigoroaei, S., & Hahn, E. A.. "Making sense of control: Change and consequences.." Emerging trends in the social and behavioral sciences. An interdisciplinary, searchable, and linkable resource.. Ed. In R. Scott & S. Kosslyn (Eds.). Hoboken, NJ:: John Wiley and Sons., 2015
  • Lachman, Margie. "Mind the gap in the middle: A call to study midlife.." Research in Human Development 12. (2015): 327-334.
  • Lachman, Margie. E., Teshale, Salom., & Agrigoroaei, Stefan.. "Midlife as a pivotal period in the life course: Balancing growth and decline at the crossroads of youth and old age." International Journal of Behavioral Development. 39. (2015): 20-31.
  • Rickenbach, E. H., Agrigoroaei, S., & Lachman, Margie E.. "Awareness of Memory Ability and Change: In(Accuracy) of Memory Self-Assessments in Relation to Performance." Journal of Population Ageing 8. (2015): 71-99.
  • Vargas-Lascano, D., Galambos, N., Krahn, H., & .Lachman, Margie E.. "Growth in perceived control across 25 years from the late teens to midlife: The role of personal and parents' education." Developmental Psychology 51. (2015): 124-135.
  • Graham, E., & Lachman, Margie E. "Personality traits, facets and cognitive performance: Age differences in their relations." Personality and Individual Differences 59. (2014): 89-95.
  • Karlamangla, Arun.S., Miller-Martinez, Dana., Lachman, Margie. E., Tun, Patricia.A., Koretz, A., & Seeman, Teresa. M.. "Biological correlates of adult cognition: Midlife in the United States Study (MIDUS)." Neurobiology of Aging 35. (2014): 387-394.
  • Lachman, Margie. E., Agrigoroaei, Stefan., Tun, Patricia. A., & Weaver, Suzanne. L.. "Monitoring Cognitive Functioning: Psychometric Properties of The Brief Test of Adult Cognition by Telephone.." Assessment 21. (2014): 404-417.
  • Rickenbach, E. H., Almeida, D. M., Seeman, T. E., & Lachman, Margie, E.. "Daily stress magnifies the association between cognitive decline and everyday memory problems: An integration of longitudinal and diary methods." Psychology and Aging 29. (2014): 852-862.
  • Turiano, Nicholas. A., Chapman, Benjamin. P., Agrigoroaei, Stefan, Infurna, Frank. J., & Lachman, Margie. E. . "Perceived control reduces mortality risk at low, not high education levels." Health Psychology 8. (2014): 883-890.
  • Zebrowitz, Leslie., Franklin, Robert.,Jr., Boshyan, Jasmine., Luevano, Victor., Agrigoroaei, Stefan., Milosavljevic, B., Lachman. Margie. E.. "Older and younger adults accuracy in discerning competence and health in older and younger faces." Psychology and Aging 29. (2014): 454-468.
  • Agrigoroaei, Stefan., Neupert, Shevaun.D. & Lachman, Margie.E. "Maintaining a Sense of Control in the Context of Cognitive Challenge: Greater Stability in Control Beliefs Benefits Working Memory." GeroPsych:The Journal of Gerontopsychology and Geriatric Psychiatry 26. (2013): 49-59.
  • Agrigoroaei, Stefan., Polito, Michael., Lee, Angela., Kranz-Graham, Eileen., Seeman, Teresa., & Lachman, Margie.E. "Cortisol Response to Challenge Involving Low Controllability: The Role of Control Beliefs and Age." Biological Psychology 93. (2013): 138-142, doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2013.01.003.
  • Bertrand, R. Graham, E. K., & Lachman, M. E. "Personality development in adulthood and old age.." Handbook of Psychology: 2nd Edition. Developmental Psychology. vol. 6 Ed. In R. M. Lerner, M.A. Easterbrooks, & J. Mistry (Eds.),. NY: Wiiley, 2013. 475-494.
  • Human Lauren.J., Biesanz J.C., Miller Gregory.E., Chen Edith., Lachman Margie.E., Seeman Teresa. E. "Is change bad? Personality change is associated with poorer psychological health and greater metabolic syndrome in midlife.." Journal of Personality 81. (2013): 249-60.
  • Kimhy, D. Crowley, O., V., McKinley, P. S., Burg, M. M., Lachman, M. E., Tun, P. A, Ryff, C. D., Seeman, T.E., & Sloan, R. P. "The association of cardiac vagal control and executive functioning - Findings from the MIDUS Study." Journal of Psychiatric Research 47. (2013): 628-635.
  • Tun Patricia.A., Miller-Martinez Dana., Lachman Margie.E., Seeman Teresa . "Social strain and executive function across the lifespan: The dark (and light) sides of social engagement.." Aging, Neuropsychology, and Cognition 20. (2013): 320-338.
  • Chen, E., Miller, G. E., Lachman, M. E., Gruenewald, T. L., & Seeman, T. E. "Shift-and- persist strategies linked to allostatic load in adults from low childhood socioeconomic circumstances." Psychosomatic Medicine 74. (2012): 178-186.
  • Graham, E. K., & Lachman, M. E. "Personality stability is associated with better cognitive performance in adulthood. Are the stable are more able?." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences 67. (2012): 545-554.
  • Graham, Eileen Kranz & Lachman, Margie. "Personality and aging: Cognitive perspectives and processes." Handbook of developmental psychology: Adult development and aging. 1st ed. Ed. S. Whitbourne & M. Sliwinski (Eds.). New York: Wiley-Blackwell, 2012. 254-272.
  • Kremen, W. S., Lachman, M. E., Pruessner, J. C., Sliwinski, M., & Wilson, R. "Mechanisms of age-related cognitive change and targets for intervention: Social interactions and stress." Journal of Gerontology: Biological and Medical Sciences 67. (2012): 760-765.
  • Lachman, M. E., & Agrigoroaei, S. "Low perceived control as a risk factor for episodic memory: The mediational role of anxiety and task interference.." Memory and Cognition. 40. (2012): 287-296.
  • Zimprich, D., Allemand, M., & Lachman, M. E. "Age-related psychometrics of the MIDUS personality adjective items across midlife." Psychological Assessment 24. (2012): 173-186.
  • Agrigoroaei, Stefan., & Lachman, Margie. E.. "Cognitive functioning in midlife and old age: Combined effects of psychosocial and behavioral factors." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences 66B. S1 (2011): i130-i140..
  • Gerstorf, Denis., Röcke, Christina, & Lachman, Margie. E.. "Antecedent-consequent relations of perceived control to health and social support: Longitudinal evidence for between-domain associations across adulthood." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences 66. (2011): 61-71.
  • Lachman, Margie, Neupert, Shevaun, & Agrigoroaei, Stefan.. "The relevance of control beliefs for health and aging." Handbook of the Psychology of Aging. 7th ed. Ed. K. W. Schaie & S. L. Willis. New York: Elsevier, 2011. 175-190.
  • Miller, G. E., Lachman, M. E., Chen, E., Gruenewald, T. L., Karlamanga, A.R., & Seeman, T. E. "Pathways to resilience: Maternal nurturance as a buffer against childhood poverty’s effects on metabolic syndrome at midlife." Psychological Science 22. (2011): 1591–1599.
  • Seeman, Teresa., Miller-Martinez, Dana., Stein-Merkin, Sharon., Lachman, Margie., Tun, Patricia., & Karlamangla, Arun.. "Histories of social engagement and adult cognition : The Midlife in the US Study (MIDUS)." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences 66B. S1 (2011): i141-i152.
  • Stawski, Robert. S., Almeida, David.M., Lachman, Margie. E., Tun, Patricia., & Rosnick, Christopher., Seeman, Teresa.. "Associations between cognitive functioning and naturally occuring daily cortisol during middle adulthood: Timing is everything.." Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences. 66B. S1 (2011): i71-i81.
  • Agrigoroaei, Stefan, & Lachman, Margie. "Personal control and aging: How beliefs and expectations matter." Aging in America: Psychological, Physical, and Social Issues.. vol. 1 -Psychological Aspects Ed. In Cavanaugh, J. C., & Cavanaugh, C. K. (Eds.). Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger, 2010. 177-201.
  • Cotter, Kelly & Lachman, Margie. "Psychosocial and behavioral contributors to health: Age-related increases in physical disability are reduced by physical fitness." Psychology and Health 25. (2010): 805-820.
  • Cotter, Kelly. A., Lachman, Margie. "No strain, no gain: Psychosocial predictors of physical activity across the adult lifespan." Journal of Physical Activity and Health 7. (2010): 584-594.
  • Lachman, Margie and Kranz, Eileen, Eds. I. Weiner, E. Craighead. "The Midlife Crisis." The Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology 4th edition Volume 3, pp. 993-994. 2010.
  • Lachman, Margie, & Agrigoroaei, S.. "Optimizing health: A lifespan approach." Boomers and Beyond: Reconsidering the Role of Libraries.. Ed. P. Rothstein, & D. Schull. Chicago: American Library Association, 2010. 15-22.
  • Lachman, Margie, & Agrigoroaei, Stefan.. "Promoting functional health in midlife and old age: Long-term protective effects of control beliefs, social support, and physical exercise." PLoSONE. 5(10): e13297. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0013297. (2010).
  • Lachman, Margie, E., Agrigoroaei, Stefan., Murphy, Chandra., & Tun, Patricia. A.. "Frequent cognitive activity compensates for education differences in episodic memory." American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry. 18. (2010): 4-10.
  • Lachman, Margie. "Life begins at 40, 50, 60, and 70. Are we happy yet?." The World Book of Happiness. Ed. L. Bormans. Singapore and Belgium: Page One and Lanoo, 2010. 148-150.
  • Pearman, Ann, & Lachman, Margie. "Heart rate recovery predicts memory performance in older adults." Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback 35. (2010): 107-114.
  • Stawski, R.S., Almeida, D. M., Lachman, M.E., Rosnick, D.B., & Tun, P.A. "Cognitive resources and exposure and emotional reactivity to daily stressors: Findings from the MIDUS study." Psychology and Aging 25. (2010): 330-342.
  • Tun, Patricia A., Lachman, Margie E.. "The association between computer use and cognition across adulthood: Use it so you won’t lose it." Psychology and Aging 25. (2010): 560-568.
  • Almeida, D., Lachman, M. E., Marks, N. F., Mroczek, D., & Ryff, C. D.. "Orville Gilbert Brim: Icon of generativity." Research on Human Development 6. (2009): 252-266.
  • Lachman, Margie , Rosnick, C. & Rocke, C.. "The rise and fall of control beliefs in adulthood: Cognitive and biopsychosocial antecedents of stability and change over nine years.." Cognition in aging: Methodologies and applications. Ed. H. Bosworth & C. Hertzog. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association, 2009. 143-160.
  • Neupert, S., Whihtbourne, S., & Lachman, Margie. "Exercise efficacy and control beliefs predict exercise behavior during and after an exercise intervention." Journal of Aging and Physical Activity 16,. (2009): 1-16.
  • Lachman, Margie , Rocke, C., Rosnick, C, & Ryff, C.D.. "Realism and illusion in Americans' temporal views of their life satisfaction: Age differences in reconstructing the past and anticipating the future." Psychological Science 9,. (2008): 889-897..
  • Lachman, Margie and Tun, Patricia. "Cognitive testing in large scale surveys: Assessment by telephone.." Handbook on Cognitive Aging: Interdisciplinary Perspectives. Ed. S. Hofer & D. Alwin. Thousand Oaks: Sage, 2008. 506-522.
  • Rocke, Christina, & Lachman, Margie. E.. "Perceived trajectories of life satisfaction across past, present, and future: Profiles and correlates of subjective change in young, middle-aged and older adults.." Psychology and Aging, 23,. (2008): 833-847.
  • Tun, Patricia & Lachman, Margie. "Age differences in reaction time and attention in a national telephone sample of adults: Education, sex , and task complexity matter.." Developmental Psychology, 44,. (2008): 1421-1429.
  • Whitbourne, S., Neupert, S., & Lachman, Margie. "Daily physical activity: Relation to everyday memory in adulthood." Journal of Applied Gerontology 27. (2008): 331-349.