British Prime Ministers since 1945 POLITIC4002

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

The course is concerned with the role of the British prime minister since 1945 in terms of institutions, policy and personality.


This course may not be running this year. For further information please check the Politics Moodle page or contact the subject directly.

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Entry to Honours Politics requires a grade point average of 12 (Grade C) over Politics 2A and Politics 2B as a first attempt.

Excluded Courses





Essay of 2500 words (50% of the final grade)

Exam (50% of the final grade)

Main Assessment In: December

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable


Course Aims

The aim of this course is to deepen student knowledge of the performance of individual prime ministers and the development of the office of prime minister since 1945, drawing on both political science and political history analyses. It considers prime ministerial performance in an institutional context (Cabinet government; prime ministerial government; core executive studies; British 'presidentialism', the growth of No.10 as a prime ministerial resource); in a party context (the prime minister is also simultaneously leader of their party), and in an evolving media context. It also considers the extent to which the personality of the prime minister influences the policies and performance of their government.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this programme students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge of the important policy (domestic and foreign) contributions of British Prime Ministers since 1945

2. Explain and analyse the importance of these contributions to British politics

3. apply knowledge gained analytically in terms of the development of the office of Prime Minister

4. Evaluate scholarly literature on the British premiership

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.