How To Write A Case Study - Easy Guide
Table of Contents
- 1. What is a Case Study?
- 2. How to Write a Case Study?
- 2.1 Case Study Research
- 2.2 Identify the Key Problems
- 2.3 Description of Solution
- 2.4 Case Study Analysis
- 2.5 Case Study Format
- 3. Case Study Research Design and method
- 3.1 Case Study Design
- 3.2 Case Study Methodology
- 3.3 Fields Utilizing Case Studies as Research Type
- 3.4 Purpose of Case Studies
- 3.5 Types of Case Study
- 4. Case Study Examples
Freaking out over the assignment that your professor just gave you?
Can’t figure out how to write a case study?
No need to worry; you are in the right spot!
What is a Case Study?
Case studies are a common type of assignment in medical, business and law schools. They prove to be an effective way of learning for students.
There are different forms of cases that students encounter; some are extremely basic and simple, while others require detailed analysis and research.
This type of writing usually require students to work in groups and to answer open-ended questions in order to find a solution for the issue at hand.
Simply put, a case study is a research method in which you investigate a particular phenomenon to draw conclusions. It gathers background information about an event, place, personality or issue. In order to identify the root causes and propose a valid solution. It is both exploratory and descriptive analysis of a problem.
Sounds complicated, sure, but with this detailed guide students will find out the answer to "how to write a case study?" This blog post will provide the necessary information needed to understand and craft an informative paper.
Now that you know a case study definition is, let’s teach you how to create it!
How to Write a Case Study?
In order to write it, one must plan and design beforehand. The author must then figure out methods for collecting information through research. Then conduct analysis, research the case history and finally present their findings. Seems straight forward enough; however, it is more complicated than it first appears.
The following goes into more detail about writing this type of academic paper with case study approaches.
Case Study Research
Before you start writing a case study, it is necessary to construct an effective research methodology.
Doing so will help you decide how the data will be gathered and how you will answer the research question. It is important that you have credible sources of data to conduct your research.
To figure out the best research strategy and compose the data collected, try answering these questions:
- What issue or research question is this study going to address?
- Who is the target audience of this study?
- What type of study will this be?
- Who or what you want to study. A person or an organization.
- The time period you want to study. Current state or the changes that have happened over time.
- Where is the issue taking place?
There are two different types of case study research methods (qualitative and quantitative) that you can follow according to the type of case study you are going for.
You can learn about these types from this article on qualitative Vs. quantitative research methodology.
Identify the Key Problems
One of the most important steps of writing it is to explain the problem. The researchers or the students should be very careful about presenting the details of the problem according to content formats. They should also explain the purpose of the study or the scenario which motivated them to conduct it. Excessive use of social media affects the grades of students can be used as a key problem for conducting a study.
If there are multiple challenges or issues present, separate the more important ones and then state the most significant one. Describe the issue in a few sentences and describe how it affects the overall working of an organization. When you present the key issues, you also need to explain why it occurred?
Remember that you have to address these issues within the real life context.
Description of Solution
Another important step necessary for writing is the description of the solution. The most important purpose of conducting the study is exploring the roots and causes of the problem and then accomplishing the proposed solution for it as a means to eradicate the problem from society. However, if there is no detailed description of the solution, the purpose would not be fulfilled.
Case Study Analysis
To write a great case study, a detailed analysis of the results and solutions must be included. Good case studies are meant to highlight the reasons and causes of the research problem and are created for the purpose of helping the researchers to derive a solution accordingly. The detailed analysis provides an opportunity to the researchers to apply the solution of the problem to the whole society as a means to improve the working of society and recommend further action.
Case Study Format
Given below is the case study outline that you need to follow for a logical flow.
An engaging title that describes the overall purpose of the study.
A brief summary of the study stated in one-two paragraphs. The abstract should answer the what, when where, who and why of your topic. It is an introduction to the overall study, problem, hypothesis and findings.
In the introductory paragraph highlight your reasons for interest in the particular topic. And provide the background information on the research problem and its significance. What you knew about the topic at hand prior to conducting the study and what did you learn from it?
Next, state your hypothesis, how you decided on it, what led to its development, etc.
Make sure that the hypothesis is testable and that you can prove it using evidence.
Here, present the research methodology used to carry out the research and find relevant data.
Organize the gathered data and present it logically so the reader can draw conclusions.
Provide the explanation of the results and findings and how they support your hypothesis.
End with a short description stating what was the case study able to achieve, was the hypothesis proven and what did you learn from it?
Also, provide some recommendations for further work and improvement.
Cite all the sources used to gather information.
Thank those who helped carry out the study.
Add any extra information related to the case study such as graphs.
Case Study Template
Case Study Research Design and Method
The research design and method lets you explore specific cases as a means to test a theory or investigate a specific topic.
Grounded theory is a research design that has been used by researchers for decades now. The goal of this method is to understand the context of the study by generating thesis from the collected data.
Step one is to decide the study group or a particular set of population or an individual. The research methodology must be rigorous with systematic note-taking.
Case Study Design
The design focuses on how the study will be addressed and whether the gathered background information is relevant to the study.
There are no hard and fast rules here, unlike some scientific works, but the main goal is to ensure that your work is brief but comprehensive in order to avoid irrelevant data.
To ensure that you don't go off topic, you should write down a list of key points that you want to address in your study. Keep referencing back to it by sharing the relevant facts.
Case Study Methodology
The case study method is simply observing the subject or the persons group. The goal is to find out information that wouldn’t have been possible if the number of individuals under observation was large.
Fields Utilizing a Case Studies as Research Type
In the context of education or psychology, individual case studies are conducted in order to get a better understanding of an individual and his problems. The researchers seek to find the cause of the issue.
They try to generalize their findings on similar groups, as a means to highlight a general issue within a society, as well as to provide the specific strategies for its solution. Social and real life sciences do not work on rigid formulas, as such researchers have to use the empirical research methods in order to explore the hidden details of the matter and devise their solution strategies accordingly.
In the case of business case studies, the success stories of potential customers and their experience with products and services can be used to explore the formulas contributing to the success of that business.
Purpose Case Studies
Apart from exploring the issue and developing strategies for solutions, there is another purpose of writing case studies. The social scientists intend to explore the theories which can improve the workings of a society.
As such, they conduct the studies, using the interventions, in order to explore whether or not a theory would prove beneficial for the society.
Types of Case Study
There are different types of case studies which include: illustrative, explorative, critical instance and cumulative. The purpose of all of these case studies is to explore the issues while utilizing different means. Some are linear; some are process oriented, while some are grounded.
Depending on the research method utilized by the researcher, a study could be completed in one day, one month, one year, or even longer. No matter how long it takes, the purpose of it remains the same, to make society a better place.
- Explanatory In an Explanatory study, the main focus is the explanation of a particular phenomenon or question.
- Exploratory Exploratory is a large-scale research project that proves the need for further investigation.
- Intrinsic In an intrinsic study, the focus of the study is the case/subject itself.
- Instrumental This study takes a deeper look into the insights of an event.
Case Study Examples
Before you start writing your case study it is a good practice to read existing case studies done by other students. This further clears any ambiguities that you might have regarding the case study format or how to cite a case study.
Here we have added informative case study samples for your help.
Case study psychology PDF
Medical case study PDF
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