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Muñoz, Elizabeth

Elizabeth Muñoz

Assistant Professor, Research Lab Director (Academic)
Department of Human Development and Family Sciences, Population Research Center


Phone: 512-471-1740

Office Location



Ph.D., Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
M.S., Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
B.S., Psychology and Social Behavior, University of California, Irvine

Academic Positions

2019 – Present    Assistant Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Sciences
                            University of Texas at Austin; Austin, TX

2020 – Present    Faculty Affiliate, Center on Aging and Population Sciences
                            University of Texas at Austin; Austin, TX 

2019 – Present    Faculty Research Associate, Population Research Center
                            University of Texas at Austin; Austin, TX

2015 – 2019         Postdoctoral Scholar, Department of Psychology
                            University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA

Research Interests

Racial and ethnic minoritized adults suffer a greater incidence of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias compared to their counterparts. A central focus of my research program is to expand our understanding on how psychosocial and environmental contexts across the lifespan influence cognitive health in racial/ethnic minoritized adults with the goal of identifying early and modifiable predictors of adult cognitive health to address inequities in old age.

My three active lines of investigation include: 1) the links and mechanisms between psychological, social, and environmental stress on cognitive functioning across the lifespan; 2) examinations of salient sources of stress and their links with cognitive function among Latinx adults; 3) applying a within population lens to evaluate associations between social and ethnicity-related sources of stress on cognitive function in Mexican-origin adults. I employ a variety of research designs to address my research questions, including longitudinal studies across years of assessments, ecological momentary assessments, and an integration of both (e.g., measurement-burst designs).

Visit my research website for a current publication list: https://sites.cns.utexas.edu/munoz/publications 

Grants and Fellowships

2017 - 2019 National Institute on Aging; Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (F32AG056134). Project Title: The Role of Neighborhood Stress in Cognitive Function among Racially and Ethnically Diverse Adults
2015, Pennsylvania State University; Joseph and Jean Britton Graduate Fellowship
2009 & 2013, Pennsylvania State University; Bunton-Waller Fellowship

Awards and Honors

January 2022 Rising Star Award, Association for Psychological Sciences
2021 – 2023 NIH Clinical Research Loan Repayment Program
June 2017 Butler-Williams Scholar, National Institute on Aging
May 2013 RAND Summer Institute Scholarship
August 2010 Kathryn A. Shustek Scholarship, Pennsylvania State University
August 2009 Donald Ford Endowment for Professional Development, Pennsylvania State University