Produce a 3,500 word case study research report of a real world example of homicide in England and Wales

Feb 15, 2024

Produce a 3,500 word case study research report of a real world example of homicide in England and Wales
  • Summative: Coursework 1: 3,500 word – case study research report (100%)

Important note:  The word count is 3,500 (+/-10% leeway). Thus, your work should be between 3,150 and 3,850 words.

Briefing summative

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  • Produce a 3,500 word case study research report of a real world example of homicide in England and Wales (9 options provided)
  • Outline the case from offender history, through to commission of the offence(s), investigation, prosecution and sentencing
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the various procedures of investigation and sentencing regarding your case
  • Apply criminological and psychological theory to your chosen case study

What is a Case Study Research Report?

  • Case study? In-depth examination of a particular case;  detailed analysis of the case
  • Research report? Written presentation of your research into a coherent, focused and structured document
  • NOT AN ESSAY – avoid direct quotations, use academic sources, apply theory to case in Discussion only

Case study options

  • The case of Dennis Nilsen
  • The case of Kiranjit Ahluwalia
  • The case of Alice Ruggles
  • The case of Mary Bell
  • The case of Claire Colebourn
  • The case of Steve Wright
  • The case of David McGreavy
  • The case of Gemma McCluskie
  • The case of Stephen Lawrence

Examples of Homicide Subtype

Intimate partner homicide (IPH) by males

Intimate partner homicide (IPH) by females

Child Homicide (filicide, infanticide, pedicide)

Killing of parents (parricide, patricide, matricide)

Other domestic related homicides (familicide)

Systematic killing of women (femicide)

Male-on-male homicide

Sexual Homicide (outside domestic settings)

Multiple Homicide: spree, mass and serial killing



Key explanations by homicide subtype

Possible Outlines


       -Introduction (5%)

       -Background (60%)

    -Discussion (30%)

    -Conclusion (5%)



            -Introduction (5%)

            -Detailed description of the case (20%)

            -Literature review on your homicide subtype, explanations          and theories relevant to your homicide subtype (40%)

            -Discussion: application of info presented in lit review to                         explain your homicide case (30%)

            -Conclusion (5%)



  • Briefly introduce the case, your homicide subtype, mention your research aim / question and the structure the report will follow
  • Research question/aim:

To what extent can [insert theory(s)] on [insert homicide subtype] explain the homicide of [insert case study / offender(s)]?

Example: The aim of this research report is to investigate the extent to which Luckenbill’s theory on male on male homicide may explain the homicide of Stephen Lawrence


  • Description of the case:
    • Offender’s history / early life
    • Detailed description of the homicide event itself
    • The ‘aftermath’ (i.e. investigation, prosecution and sentencing)
    • Critical thinking – relevant debates surrounding sentences? Any criticisms around the investigation by law enforcement?
    • Literature Review:
    • Definition of subtype, overview and statistics on the homicide subtype (victims? location? homicide method?), relevant characteristics of subtype (provide details from previous research)
    • Explanations of your homicide subtype (based on literature why does this subtype occur?, relevant typologies)
    • Integrate relevant psychological and/or criminological theory


  • Discussion (drawing from info presented in lit review and case)
    • Application of theory to the homicide case (consistencies and inconsistencies)
    • Relevant typologies that help better understand and explain the case
    • Make explicit links between theory and specifics of the case!
    • Limitations of your study
    • Future recommendations? (from your own research!)
    • Conclusion
    • Explicitly answer your research question / address the aim of the study

Marking based on:

  • Presentation
    • Overall structure
    • Coherent and clear sentences and overall argument
    • Application of theory
    • Academic writing style and tone
    • Knowledge and understanding of relevant research
    • Evidence of wider reading
    • Quality and number of sources

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