LLM Homicide

Student studying on the Birmingham CampusModule leader: Visiting Lecturer, Mr Thomas Crofts

Module description:

The focus of the module is the law of homicide. The body of common law and statutory law that comprises this law of homicide has recently been extensively reviewed with a view to its reform by the Law Commission for England and Wales. This reform project will be central to the major themes of the module. Another closely related legal system, Western Australia, has also embarked on a project to reform of the law of homicide and therefore comparisons will be drawn with Western Australia and other legal systems. Because of the impact and resonance of the killing of human beings by human beings, the definition of the forms of homicide and the appropriate penal responses to them will always be central to the practice and theory of the criminal law.

Seminar topics:

  • Introduction to Homicde
  • Homicide: Historical and Social context
  • Homicide offences: Comparisons
  • How many forms of Homicide do we need?
  • Murder: Definition
  • Murder: Punishment
  • Provocation
  • Defensive force
  • Mercy and consensual killings
  • Unwilled acts and accident
  • Emergency and duress
  • Final review and critical issues

Methods of assessment

Modules on the LLM programmes will be assessed in one of the following ways. As this website is set up in advance, it is not possible to specify which method of assessment will be implemented for each module.


  • One 6000 word essay


  • One 3-hour written examination

If you'd like to find out how a module will be assessed in the forthcoming academic year please contact the LLM Programmes Administrator at Law-LLM@contacts.bham.ac.uk.



Modules and Courses are constantly updated and under review. As with most academic programmes, please remember that it is possible that a module may not be offered in any particular year, for instance because a member of staff is on study leave or too few students opt for it. The University of Birmingham reserves the right to vary or withdraw any course or module.