SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed she will not seek to form a coalition with another party.
The SNP (Scottish National Party) fell two seats short of an overall majority - winning 63 of 129 seats available - but with such a "large group of MSPs elected", Ms Sturgeon said she saw no need to seek a "formal arrangement".
Instead, she said, when the Scottish Parliament reconvenes in the coming days, she would ask them to formally re-elect her as First Minister, and she will then form a minority SNP government.
"We won a clear and unequivocal mandate, and I secured the personal mandate I sought to implement the bold and ambitious programme for government that I asked the country to vote for," she said.
On the question of independence, she added, the SNP would make their case " with passion, with patience and with respect", saying their aim was to "persuade, not to divide".
She said she had a "duty" to "rise above party politics", and to govern in the best interests of all of the country as a whole.