I joined the Law School as a lecturer in 1999, from the University of Paisley, where I had been teaching since 1997, having studied at Glasgow University (LLB, 1st class hons 1988; PhD 2004) and McGill University, Montreal, Canada (LLM 1994). I worked for Dundas & Wilson CS, from 1989 until 1993, first as a trainee then as a qualified solicitor. I have been a Reader since 2013. I teach primarily in the area of Criminal Law and this, together with childhood and crime, also constitutes my main research interest.
I am currently the Deputy Head of the Law School, a member of the AHRC’s Peer Review College, the Chair of the Law Society of Scotland’s Board of Examiners and a member of the Executive Governance Group of the Centre for Youth and Criminal Justice. From September 2013 until August 2015 I was the Associate Dean (Postgraduate Research) and the Head of the Graduate School for the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. I was also a member of the children’s panel for the City of Glasgow from 1996 until 2006.
I have recently completed a Scottish Government–funded project on the Role of the Safeguarder in the Children’s Hearings System and I am currently working on a Carnegie Trust-funded project on Decision-Making in relation to Jointly Reported Children.
My main teaching interest is in Criminal Law which I have taught at all levels (pass degree; honours and masters). I have also recently created and developed an LLM/MSc module in Childhood and Crime. I have extensive experience of dissertation supervision at honours, masters and PhD level. In 2009, Claire received a teaching excellence certificate from the Strathclyde Students’ Union.
My research interests are focussed in the areas of children who offend and in criminal law. I have worked extensively on the age of criminal responsibility and on aspects of the Scottish children’s hearings system. I have a particular interest in the criminal capacity of the child and in the difficulty for law in dealing with child-criminals – individuals who are, simultaneously, vulnerable and in need of protection as children and, also, offenders. The relationship between concepts of childhood and criminal law is also important in this context. I have a monograph in these areas: Childhood and Crime (Dundee University Press: 2007) and I have recently published a piece in a special edition of Youth Justice on the age of criminal responsibility.
In criminal law, I have a general interest in all areas of Scots Criminal Law with a focus on homicide. I have published on the partial defence of provocation and the mens rea of murder I am currently working on a second edition of Scots Criminal Law: A Critical Analysis (1st ed: Dundee University Press, 2009) with Professor Pamela Ferguson of the University of Dundee.
- contemporary childhoods conference: Scotland's Children: Possible Futures?
- Central Law Training: The Criminal Law Conference
- Gerald Gordon Seminar on Crimina
- Invited speaker
- Examiner in Scots Criminal Law
- External Examiner
- External Examiner in Criminal Law
- External Examiner
more professional activities
- The Public Interest and the Child’s Best Interests: Jointly-Reported Children in Scotland
- McDiarmid, Claire (Principal Investigator)
- Period 01-Oct-2016 - 31-Aug-2018
- AHRC - Doctoral Training Partnership Scotland | Gavin, Mhairi
- Piacentini, Laura (Principal Investigator) McDiarmid, Claire (Co-investigator) Gavin, Mhairi (Research Co-investigator)
- Period 01-Oct-2014 - 01-Jul-2018