Ariel Williamson, PhD

Core Faculty

Ariel Williamson, PhD, DBSM, is an Assistant Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry at the Perelman School of Medicine of the University of Pennsylvania. She has appointments in the Center for Pediatric Clinical Effectiveness (CPCE), PolicyLab, the Sleep Center in the Division of Pulmonary Medicine, and in the Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). She is a licensed psychologist and diplomat in behavioral sleep medicine, and currently provides clinical services in the CHOP Sleep Center. Dr. Williamson also serves as a sleep expert on the Pediatric Sleep Council (, an international team with expertise in sleep and development in young children. She is additionally a member of the Board of Directors for the Beds for Kids program, which provides beds, bedding, and healthy sleep education to children living without an individual bed and in impoverished homes in the greater Philadelphia area.

Dr. Williamson has a background in implementing and evaluating evidence-based interventions for children and their families struggling with disruptive behavior disorders, parenting issues, sleep problems and other health concerns. Her current research focuses on identifying, preventing and treating sleep and behavior problems both in pediatric primary care and in partnership with community organizations, including the Beds for Kids program. Dr. Williamson also conducts research on socio-ecological factors that are associated with increased risk for sleep and behavioral concerns, such as parental depression and socioeconomic disadvantage. In addition, she collaborates with CHOP's Healthy Minds, Healthy Kids program to identify factors related to integrated primary care service delivery, treatment engagement, and patient outcomes. Overall, her research aims to increase access to health care services and reduce pediatric health disparities.

Dr. Williamson earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Delaware. She completed her predoctoral internship in integrated behavioral health at CHOP, and a T32 postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral sleep medicine at the CHOP Sleep Center and the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. Dr. Williamson is the recipient of a loan repayment award from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). Her research is currently funded by career development awards from NICHD (K23HD094905) and the Sleep Research Society Foundation.