Born and raised in Romania, I first came to the US by myself as a 15-year old foreign exchange student, an adventure that continues to this day. I discovered Psychology at Queens University, where I received my BA summa cum laude in three years. At age 22, armed with nothing but love for my field, I started graduate school at Princeton, where I got my PhD in four short but transformative years. I was thrilled to receive a teaching award and departmental nomination for a NY Academy of Sciences research prize.

While working on my dissertation, I was recruited to work for a quantitative hedge fund in New York City, a fabulous opportunity and challenge. After the birth of my son, I returned to the beautiful world of academia, complete with research and teaching at Princeton and Rider. I phased out of my latest business role as president of a boutique recruiting firm once I became full-time faculty at Rider in 2011.

I live in Princeton with my husband Jeroen and son Matthew.


My specialty is Cognitive Psychology, and my main research interests are creativity, language, and organizational behavior. I have supervised and collaborated on projects in other areas with Rider students who are eager to engage in research.

I love to hear thoughts and personal stories on creativity, and I welcome collaborations with faculty and students. To get in touch, please email me at [email protected].

Representative Publications

Haught-Tromp, C. (2016). The Green Eggs and Ham hypothesis: How constraints facilitate creativityPsychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts.

Haught-Tromp, C. (2016). Facilitating creative thinking in the 21st century: When constraints help. In D. Ambrose & R. J. Sternberg, Eds., Creative Intelligence in the 21st Century: Grappling with Enormous Problems and Huge Opportunities, pp. 107-117. Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Haught-Tromp, C. (2016). Creativity and constraint: Friends, not foes. In J. C. Kaufman and J. Baer, Eds., Creativity and Reason in Cognitive Development, 2nd Edition, pp. 211-225Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Haught-Tromp, C., & Stokes, P. D. (in press). Constraints, competency and creativity in the classroom. In R. Leikin & B. Sriraman, Eds., Creativity and Giftedness: Interdisciplinary perspectives from mathematics and beyond. The Netherlands: Springer Science and Business.

Haught, C. (2015). The role of constraints in creative sentence productionCreativity Research Journal, 27 (2), 160-166.

Haught, C. (2014). Spain is not Greece: How metaphors are understoodJournal of Psycholinguistic Research, 43, 351-356.

Haught, C. (2013). A tale of two tropes: How metaphor and simile differMetaphor and Symbol, 28, 254-274.

Glucksberg, S., and Haught, C. (2006). Can Florida become like the next Florida? When metaphoric comparisons failPsychological Science, 17, 935-938. 

Broader Dissemination Of Research

New York Magazine:

The Academic Minute, a program on WAMC Northeast Public Radio:

Inside Higher Ed:


Recipient of the Rider University Distinguished Teaching Award (2016).

Courses I teach:

  • Statistics
  • Research Methods: Cognition
  • Organizational Psychology
  • Child Development
  • Senior Seminar
  • Independent Study in Psychology