Ariel Ko

Clinical psychologist working with adults, children, adolescents, families, and couples.

Ph.D. Candidate Psychology (Clinical), M.A. Psychology (Clinical), B.A. Psychology

Ariel Ko is a Canadian-trained doctoral resident from the University of British Columbia (UBC) and a full member of the Singapore Psychological Society (SPS).

Ariel is a clinician-researcher who specialises in working with adults, children, and adolescents who struggle with perfectionism. In addition to perfectionism, Ariel has 10+ years of experience working closely with individuals addressing the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Specific Phobias
  • Self-esteem
  • Self-harm
  • Relationship issues
  • Childhood or family problems
  • Cultural issues
  • Work-related issue
  • LGBTQ+ concerns

 

Ariel also works with couples using The Gottman Method, a research-based approach to relationships with a focus on strengthening communication, navigating conflict, and creating shared meaning. She has a particular interest in working with couples who are seeking pre-marital counselling or who are working in the earlier stages of their relationship.

Background & Clinical Experience

Ariel received her training in the Perfectionism and Psychotherapy Lab under the supervision of Dr. Paul L. Hewitt, a prominent researcher and clinician in the field of perfectionism. Her Ph.D. dissertation explores the contributing roles of attachment styles and parenting behaviours in the development of perfectionism among children and adolescents. She has published several papers related to the development and treatment of perfectionism in reputable and esteemed journals.

In her previous role at BC Children’s Hospital, Ariel administered cognitive, intellectual, and academic assessments on preschool-aged children born extremely premature (<28 weeks gestational age) to track the developmental progress of these children and offer recommendations
to support a smooth transition into primary school.

Ariel also has extensive experience leading both multi-family and individual-family Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) group sessions. In these sessions, she provides families with structured lesson plans and teaches skills that help with emotion regulation, distress tolerance, conflict resolution between family members, interpersonal effectiveness, and mindfulness

Therapeutic Approach

Ariel adopts an integrated therapeutic approach using evidence-based treatments, such as Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), psychodynamic therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and The Gottman Method for couples therapy. These approaches are well supported in research, and meaningful commitment promotes lasting changes.

Ariel provides a warm, safe, and non-judgmental space for people who are embracing change, growth, healing, and new perspectives. She tailors her approach to suit the distinct challenges and unique backgrounds of each client, ensuring a personalized and effective experience. Therapy with Ariel is collaborative, with an emphasis on establishing a strong therapeutic connection to navigate the journey toward positive transformation and creating a life of colour and meaning.

Personal

Ariel grew up in Vancouver, Canada, and has an appreciation for the great outdoors. She enjoys hiking, travelling, forming connections with new people, and immersing herself in diverse cultural experiences.