Mary J Ward, Ph.D.
Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics
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Mary J Ward, Ph.D.

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics

Profile Photo of Mary J Ward, Ph.D.
Not Accepting New Patients
Gender: Female
Language: English


Personal Statement


Specialties and Expertise


  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Child Development
  • Parental Concern About Child
  • Feeding Difficulties
  • Sleeping Difficulties
  • Behavior Problems
  • Education About Parenting Skills
  • Good Attachment to Primary Caregiver
  • Parenting Stress


Dr. Mary J. Ward is an Associate Research Professor of Psychology in Pediatrics and Psychiatry.   

In her practice, Dr. Ward offers assistance to parents with concerns about sleeping, feeding, toileting, discipline, parent-child communication, and other behavioral issues. Her focus is on collaborating with parents to define goals, teaching agreed-upon strategies, and coaching parents in how to use those strategies independently. Dr. Ward’s approach is non-judgmental, relationship-focused, and presumes parent competence.

In addition, Dr. Ward conducts diagnostic assessments for autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities. She offers parent coaching to address problem behaviors in children.

Her research focuses on issues relevant to the lives of young children, using methods from basic developmental science. Dr. Ward is especially interested in the study of special populations of infants and young children.  Over the past 35 years, she has studied children with malnutrition, adolescent mothers and their children, children adopted from overseas, and the grandchildren of adults with HIV.

Dr. Ward has remained at the forefront of research on attachment, including assessment of attachment in infants, preschool children, adolescents, and adults. Her work has been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health and private foundations and her work is published in peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. Ward received a bachelor’s degree in psychology, graduating summa cum laude from Bucknell in 1978.  She earned a Ph.D. in developmental psychology from the Institute of Child Development,  University of Minnesota in 1983.  That same year, she came to Cornell University Medical College (now Weill Cornell Medical College) the Department of Pediatrics and has remained since.



Clinical and Academic Positions

  • Clinical Psychologist - NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
  • Associate Professor of Psychology Research in Pediatrics - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., University of Minnesota, 1983


Insurance Plans Accepted

The following represents most of the managed care plans accepted by this doctor. If your insurance carrier does not appear here please contact the doctor’s office as they may have individual contracts not included on this site.

* indicates this doctor is no longer accepting new patients with this insurance plan.

  • * AETNA - HMO
  • * AETNA - PPO
  • Aetna Weill Cornell Employee Managed Care Plan
  • * Aetna Weill Cornell Employee PPO Plan
  • * Aetna-NYP - EPO/POS
  • * CIGNA
  • * Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - HMO
  • * Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - PPO
  • * Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Mediblue (Senior)
  • * Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - EPO
  • * Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Blue Access
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield HealthPlus - CHP
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield HealthPlus
  • * Oxford Health Plans - Freedom
  • * Oxford Health Plans - Liberty
  • * Oxford Health Plans - Metro/Core/Charter
  • * Rockefeller University - Trustmark
  • * United Empire
  • * United Healthcare
  • * United Healthcare - Community Plan
  • * United Healthcare Compass
  • WorldWide Medical

Locations and Appointments

External Relationships

External Relationships

Relationships and collaborations with for-profit and not-for profit organizations are of vital importance to our faculty because these exchanges of scientific information foster innovation. As experts in their fields, WCM physicians and scientists are sought after by many organizations to consult and educate. WCM and its faculty make this information available to the public, thus creating a transparent environment.

No External Relationships Reported