A case study is a particular method of qualitative research. Rather than using large samples and following a rigid protocol to examine a limited number of variables, case study methods involve an in-depth, longitudinal examination of a single instance or event: a case. They provide a systematic way of looking at events, collecting data , analyzing information , and reporting the results. As a result the researcher may gain a sharpened understanding of why the instance happened as it did, and what might become important to look at more extensively in future research.
Case Study Components
A case study is an in-depth study of one person, group, or event. In a case study, nearly every aspect of the subject's life and history is analyzed to seek patterns and causes of behavior. Case studies can be used in a variety of fields including psychology, medicine, education, anthropology, political science, and social work. The hope is that learning gained from studying one case can be generalized to many others. Unfortunately, case studies tend to be highly subjective and it is sometimes difficult to generalize results to a larger population. While case studies focus on a single individual or group, they follow a format that is similar to other types of psychology writing.
Identifying the elements of a case note
A case study is a research method that relies on a single case rather than a population or sample. When researchers focus on a single case, they can make detailed observations over a long period of time, something that cannot be done with large samples without costing a lot of money. Case studies are also useful in the early stages of research when the goal is to explore ideas, test, and perfect measurement instruments, and to prepare for a larger study.
What do you study in your college? If you are a psychology, sociology, or anthropology student, we bet you might be familiar with what a case study is. This research method is used to study a certain person, group, or situation.