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How do historians measure the success of US presidents?

In political studies, surveys have been conducted in order to construct historical rankings of the success of the presidents of the United States. Ranking systems are usually based on surveys of academic historians and political scientists or popular opinion.

How do historians rank the presidents of each administration?

The survey is conducted only when there is a change in administration, so that each presidency can be evaluated in its entirety. The historians do not rank the presidents themselves. Instead they are asked to rate each president from 1 to 10 on 10 leadership categories; the averages of all of the ratings are then ranked.

How many historians have served as presidents of the USA?

The most recent survey was of 142 presidential historians, surveyed by C-SPAN's Academic Advisor Team, made up of Douglas G. Brinkley, Edna Greene Medford, Richard Norton Smith, and Amity Shlaes.

Do traditional presidential rankings explain history?

Historian and political scientist Julian E. Zelizer has argued that traditional presidential rankings explain little concerning actual presidential history and that they are "weak mechanisms for evaluating what has taken place in the White House ."


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