Case study as a research method

Summary - Assess performance identification of symptoms - Define problems and opportunities While preparing for the case discussion, the student can also make notes with respect to the key aspects of the situation and the case analysis. These could include points such as the following: Which industry is referred to?

Case study as a research method

Saul McLeodpublished Case studies are in-depth investigations of a single person, group, event or community. Typically, data are gathered from a variety of sources and by using several different methods e.

The research may also continue for an extended period of time, so processes and developments can be studied as they happen. The case study research method originated in clinical medicine the case history, i. The case study is not itself a research method, but researchers select methods of data collection and analysis that will generate material suitable for case studies.

Most of this information is likely to be qualitative i. The data collected can be analyzed using different theories e. All Case study as a research method approaches mentioned here use preconceived categories in the analysis and they are ideographic in their approach, i.

Case studies are widely used in psychology and amongst the best known were the ones carried out by Sigmund Freud. He conducted very detailed investigations into the private lives of his patients in an attempt to both understand and help them overcome their illnesses.

Even today case histories are one of the main methods of investigation in abnormal psychology and psychiatry. For students of these disciplines they can give a vivid insight into what those who suffer from mental illness often have to endure.

Case studies are often conducted in clinical medicine and involve collecting and reporting descriptive information about a particular person or specific environment, such as a school.

In psychology, case studies are often confined to the study of a particular individual. The information is mainly biographical and relates to events in the individual's past i.

In order to produce a fairly detailed and comprehensive profile of the person, the psychologist may use various types of accessible data, such as medical records, employer's reports, school reports or psychological test results.

The interview is also an extremely effective procedure for obtaining information about an individual, and it may be used to collect comments from the person's friends, parents, employer, work mates and others who have a good knowledge of the person, as well as to obtain facts from the person him or herself.

This makes it clear that the case study is a method that should only be used by a psychologist, therapist or psychiatrist, i.

Case study as a research method

There is an ethical issue of competence. Only someone qualified to diagnose and treat a person can conduct a formal case study relating to atypical i. The procedure used in a case study means that the researcher provides a description of the behavior.

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This comes from interviews and other sources, such as observation. The client also reports detail of events from his or her point of view.

The researcher then writes up the information from both sources above as the case study, and interprets the information. Interpreting the information means the researcher decides what to include or leave out.

A good case study should always make clear which information is factual description and which is an inference or the opinion of the researcher.

Strengths of Case Studies Provides detailed rich qualitative information.

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Provides insight for further research. Permitting investigation of otherwise impractical or unethical situations. Because of their in-depth, multi-sided approach case studies often shed light on aspects of human thinking and behavior that would be unethical or impractical to study in other ways.

Research which only looks into the measurable aspects of human behavior is not likely to give us insights into the subjective dimension to experience which is so important to psychoanalytic and humanistic psychologists.

Case studies are often used in exploratory research. They can help us generate new ideas that might be tested by other methods. They are an important way of illustrating theories and can help show how different aspects of a person's life are related to each other.

The method is therefore important for psychologists who adopt a holistic point of view i. Researchers' own subjective feeling may influence the case study researcher bias. The results of the study are not generalizable because we can never know whether the case we have investigated is representative of the wider body of "similar" instances Because they are based on the analysis of qualitative i.

This means that there is a lot of scope for observer bias and it could be that the subjective opinions of the psychologist intrude in the assessment of what the data means. For example, Freud has been criticized for producing case studies in which the information was sometimes distorted to fit the particular theories about behavior e.

Sex Reassignment at Birth: Long-term Review and Clinical Implications. Analysis of a phobia of a five year old boy.Element. Description. The case. Object of the case study identified as the entity of interest or unit of analysis.

Program, individual, group, social situation, organization, event, phenomena, or process. The Case Study / Case Studies Method is intended to provide students and Facultys with some basic information.

Case Study Research Design - How to conduct a Case Study

This Case Study Method discuss what the student needs to do to prepare for a class / classroom, and what she can expect during the case discussion.

We also explain how student performance is evaluated in a case study based course. As just mentioned, the purpose of the case study is to let you apply the concepts you've learned when you analyze the issues facing a specific company.

Case Study Conference Registration is now open for our Fall Case Study Teaching in Science Conference, September , , in Buffalo, NY, sponsored by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science at the Buffalo Marriott Niagara hotel.

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In the social sciences and life sciences, a case study is a research method involving an up-close, in-depth, and detailed examination of a subject of study (the case), as well as its related contextual conditions..

Case studies can be produced by following a formal research method. These case studies are likely to appear in formal research venues, as journals and professional conferences.

Case study as a research method

Case Studies in Business, Management. Representing a broad range of management subjects, the ICMR Case Collection provides teachers, corporate trainers, and management professionals with a variety of teaching and reference material.

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