ENG4518 – Scottish Politics

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

In this course we study the development of Scottish politics from the opening of the devolved institutions – the Scottish Parliament and Executive – in 1999 to the present. We assess the impact this new political arena has had on the political parties, on the political landscape and on the conduct of politics in Scotland in general, asking the question: Has the anticipated ‘new politics’, centred on a consensus-oriented model materialised, or is Scottish politics still dominated by the British adversarial tradition? The course also addresses the development of the devolved institutions themselves, and looks at the rise of the Scottish National Party (SNP) to become the dominant political party in Scotland.

Particular emphasis is placed on the question of Scottish independence, the SNP’s argument for independence – including its references to Nordic ‘model countries’ – and on the independence referendum which was held in 2014.

Learning outcome

After completing this course, you:

  • have gained an understanding of, and insight into the development of Scottish politics since 1999
  • can analyse the development of the party-political system and party landscape in Scotland since 1999
  • can analyse the development of the devolved institutions in Scotland since 1999
  • can analyse the rise of the SNP to become the dominant political party in Scotland since 2007
  • can analyse the role references to Nordic model countries have played in Scottish politics in the period covered by the course
  • can analyse the impact the independence question has had on Scottish politics
  • are familiar with the central arguments presented on both sides in relation to the independence referendum in 2014


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Seminars 2 hours per week for 10 weeks, 20 hours in all.

Obligatory activities:

The allowed absence limit will cover all absences, including illness. You will not be granted valid absences with documentation, even when the absence is due to something beyond your control.

If the course has in-person teaching, and you are signed up for an in-person seminar group, you are to attend the teaching in the location found in the schedule.

If the course has digital teaching, and you are signed up for a digital seminar group, you must attend via Zoom with your camera on.

In certain circumstances, i.e. serious or chronic illness, you could apply for special needs accomodations.


All obligatory activities must be approved for you to sit the exam. All obligatory activities must be approved in the same semester. Approved obligatory attendance and assignments are only valid the semester you attend the course.


Two-part exam consisting of a 7-page term paper (+/- 10%), and a 2-hour written exam.

The term paper counts for 60% of the overall mark, while the written exam counts for 40%.

Written examination

The written examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera. You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

Read more about written examinations using Inspera.

Submit assignments in Inspera

You submit your assignment in the digital examination system Inspera. Read more about how to submit assignments in Inspera.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course






Autumn 2022


Autumn 2022

Teaching language