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Dr Rachel McPherson is a lecturer in Criminal Law at the University of Glasgow. Her doctoral research focused on female perpetrated homicide in the context of domestic abuse and this remains one of her primary research interests. She is particularly interested in how criminal defences are used in practice and pre-trial decision making and conceptions of vulnerability within criminal law.

She has previously worked on a range of criminal law and criminal justice related projects covering issues such as hate crime, police officers’ understanding of medico-legal intervention in the processing of sexual assault cases, rape attrition, the pilot scheme initiatives of ‘Clare’s Law’ and a range of sentencing issues (sentencing discounts, death by driving cases, sexual offences and the sentencing of young people).


(2019) Entrapment and the road to fraud, Juridical review, Sep

(2019) Battered Woman Syndrome, Diminished Responsibility and Women Who Kill: Insights from Scottish Case Law, Journal of Criminal Law, doi.org/10.1177/0022018319858506

(2019) Donegan v HM Advocate: A step in the right direction for female complainers in sexual offences? Edinburgh Law Review, 23, 406-411

(2013) The procedure of agreed narratives: Procedural efficiency or a concern for justice?, Juridical Review (June) 141

(2012) Fatal self-defence against rape: A call for clarification in Scots Law, Juridical Review (June) 111

(2012) Domestic Abuse and Partner Homicide, SCOLAG Legal Journal, Issue 411 (Jan) 4


(2018) Causing Death by Driving-Literature Review, Report for the Scottish Sentencing Council (first author McPherson, second author Professor Cyrus Tata). Available at: https://www.scottishsentencingcouncil.org.uk/news-and-media/news/causing-death-by-driving-offences-literature-review/

(2017) Independent Review of Hate Crime Legislation: Analysis of Questionnaire Responses (Full report, 25 pages), available at: https://consult.gov.scot/hate-crime/independent-review-of-hate-crime-legislation/supporting_documents/495517_APPENDIX%20%20QUESTIONNAIRE%20REPORT.pdf)

Book reviews

(2015) Book Review, Pamela R Ferguson and Claire McDiarmid, ‘Scots Criminal Law: A Critical Analysis’, Edinburgh Law Review 19(2) 297




University of Glasgow


University of Glasgow
Room 316,
The Stair Building,
The Square

Research Themes

Law, Policy and Practice

Gender, Crime and Criminal Justice

No Publications Available

21st March 2022

Hidden voices: how women convicted of killing their intimate partners experience the Scottish criminal justice system

Dr Susan Batchelor and Dr Rachel McPherson (University of Glasgow) have received funding from the BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants SRG […]

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