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Dr Violet Gibson
PhD, MSc, MRes, BSc (Hons)


Department of Social Sciences and Nursing

Headshot of Violet Gibson


Dr Violet Gibson is a psychology lecturer at Solent University, specialising in the comparative-developmental perspective. Her research focus spans the evolutionary and developmental aspects of communication of nonhuman primates and young children. Exploring naturalistic settings, she examines multimodal communication, language development, social object use, and early caregiver-child interactions, with a particular emphasis on pre-verbal communication.

After completing an MRes at the University of Portsmouth, where she examined social object use in chimpanzees, Violet was accepted into a prestigious ESRC South Coast Doctoral Training Partnership to study an MSc in Social Research methods at the University of Southampton. As part of the scholarship, she also completed a PhD at the University of Portsmouth which examined communicative object use in human and chimpanzee ontogeny. During this time, Violet also contributed to a number of research studies on memory retrieval and animal ecotourism.

Adopting an ecological approach, Violet conducts research through naturalistic observations, interdisciplinary methods, and computational modelling. She is also a dedicated contributor to the academic community, actively participating in peer reviews for academic journals, including Scientific Reports, Animal Cognition, International Journal of Primatology, and PANS.

Violet began her journey at Solent University as a psychology demonstrator and quickly advanced to the role of lecturer. Her expertise supports the teaching across various psychology courses, including supervision of final year projects and pastoral tutoring.

Further information

Gibson, V., Somogyi, E., Nomikou, I. et al. Preverbal infants produce more protophones with artificial objects compared to natural objects. Sci Rep 13, 9969 (2023).

Gibson, V., Boysen, S.T., Hobaiter, C. et al. Object use in communication of semi-wild chimpanzees. Anim Cogn 26, 1521–1537 (2023).

Davila-Ross, M., Pople, H., Gibson, V. et al. An Approaching Motor Boat Induces Stress-Related Behaviors in Proboscis Monkeys (Nasalis larvatus) Living in a Riparian Area. Int J Primatol 43, 677–697 (2022).

Taught courses

BSc (Hons) Psychology

Psychology is about the study of mind, behaviour, experience and relationships. Become a Chartered Psychologist with our BPS accredited degree.

BSc (Hons) Psychology with Counselling and Mental Health

Combine your skills in psychology and counselling to influence behaviour change and recovery on our BPS accredited degree.

BSc (Hons) Criminal Investigation with Psychology

Understanding the motives behind criminal behaviour is key in investigating crime to explain criminality and to deliver justice.