Our activities

Our activities

General Practice and Primary Care (GPPC) at the University of Glasgow has 35 research, teaching and clinical staff and seven professional services staff.

Photo of the exterior of the Clarice Pears building at University of Glasgow with blue sky above

Our research group is located within the School of Health and Wellbeing which brings together the MRC Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, research groups in mental health, public health, health economics, and the Robertson Centre for Biostatistics, as well as the Glasgow Clinical Trials Unit, into an interdisciplinary grouping of over 300 staff benefiting from frequent and regular seminar programmes and thematic workshops.

Our activities


GPPC has two complementary and overlapping research themes: (1) Multiple morbidity, complex care needs and deprivation (early years to end of life); and (2) The organisation and implementation of care.

Postgraduate education

Doctoral training is a high priority, and the School of Health and Wellbeing has a current headcount of well over 100 students.

Undergraduate education

GPPC staff also contribute to all five years of the undergraduate medical curriculum, via several related programmes (Vocational studies in years one and two, Clinical practice in the community in year three, Communication skills in year three, Clinical studies as part of the clinical rotation in years four and five, and the primary care option of the intercalated BSc Medical Science degree between years three and four) involving about 200 teaching general practices in the west of Scotland.


GPPC offers a range of accredited (masters-level) and non-accredited CPD for primary care professionals, regular training for any GPs involved in undergraduate teaching (including an annual conference), and one-off events

Interface with primary care in the west of Scotland

As an integrated academic unit, in which colleagues combine commitments to research, teaching and clinical practice, General Practice and Primary Care provides the University of Glasgow with its principal interface with primary care in the west of Scotland, teaching relationships with general practices often being helpful for research, and vice versa.

Our history

‌General Practice and Primary Care has its origin in 1974 when the late Hamish Barber (1933–2007) became the first holder of the Norie Miller Chair of General Practice (Norie Miller was the founder of the Perth-based insurance company General Accident plc which endowed the new chair). Professor Barber occupied the chair until his retiral in 1993.

In 1993 Professor Graham Watt was appointed to the Norie Miller Chair and became the new head of department. The period since then has seen substantial expansion and development of the department particularly in its research activities, the development of a masters degree and associated activities in continuing professional development, and its involvement in a new undergraduate curriculum.

The department had its home initially in accommodation in Glasgow's first health centre at Woodside. In December 1998 we relocated to 4 Lancaster Crescent. In August 2003, we moved again to Horselethill Road and in February 2023 to the Clarice Pears building, alongside other School of Health and Wellbeing colleagues.

In February 2009, Professor Frances Mair took over from Graham Watt as head of General Practice and Primary Care.