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What Is a Case Study? | Definition, Examples & Methods

Published on May 8, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on January 30, 2023.

A case study is a detailed study of a specific subject, such as a person, group, place, event, organization, or phenomenon. Case studies are commonly used in social, educational, clinical, and business research.

A case study research design usually involves qualitative methods , but quantitative methods are sometimes also used. Case studies are good for describing , comparing, evaluating and understanding different aspects of a research problem .

Table of contents

When to do a case study, step 1: select a case, step 2: build a theoretical framework, step 3: collect your data, step 4: describe and analyze the case.

A case study is an appropriate research design when you want to gain concrete, contextual, in-depth knowledge about a specific real-world subject. It allows you to explore the key characteristics, meanings, and implications of the case.

Case studies are often a good choice in a thesis or dissertation . They keep your project focused and manageable when you don’t have the time or resources to do large-scale research.

You might use just one complex case study where you explore a single subject in depth, or conduct multiple case studies to compare and illuminate different aspects of your research problem.

Once you have developed your problem statement and research questions , you should be ready to choose the specific case that you want to focus on. A good case study should have the potential to:

Unlike quantitative or experimental research , a strong case study does not require a random or representative sample. In fact, case studies often deliberately focus on unusual, neglected, or outlying cases which may shed new light on the research problem.

However, you can also choose a more common or representative case to exemplify a particular category, experience or phenomenon.

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While case studies focus more on concrete details than general theories, they should usually have some connection with theory in the field. This way the case study is not just an isolated description, but is integrated into existing knowledge about the topic. It might aim to:

To ensure that your analysis of the case has a solid academic grounding, you should conduct a literature review of sources related to the topic and develop a theoretical framework . This means identifying key concepts and theories to guide your analysis and interpretation.

There are many different research methods you can use to collect data on your subject. Case studies tend to focus on qualitative data using methods such as interviews , observations , and analysis of primary and secondary sources (e.g., newspaper articles, photographs, official records). Sometimes a case study will also collect quantitative data.

The aim is to gain as thorough an understanding as possible of the case and its context.

In writing up the case study, you need to bring together all the relevant aspects to give as complete a picture as possible of the subject.

How you report your findings depends on the type of research you are doing. Some case studies are structured like a standard scientific paper or thesis , with separate sections or chapters for the methods , results and discussion .

Others are written in a more narrative style, aiming to explore the case from various angles and analyze its meanings and implications (for example, by using textual analysis or discourse analysis ).

In all cases, though, make sure to give contextual details about the case, connect it back to the literature and theory, and discuss how it fits into wider patterns or debates.

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Case study is often defined in different ways, reflecting evolving practice. What is important then is to define the concept for yourself, and explain to your audience how you are using the term.

Some definitions

Case study involves a detailed in depth analysis of an organisation, person, a group, an event, allowing an understanding of complex phenomena, such as organisations. A case study generally involves looking at a single case (which already exists), an object of study which is easily identified and separated (a bounded system) from other similar objects e.g. an organization, a place, an illness in one patient. Case study is a useful methodology for focusing on relationships connecting everyday practices in natural settings, placing attention on a local situation (Stake, 2006).

The case study is useful to investigate an issue in depth and ‘provide an explanation that can cope with the complexity and subtlety of real of life situation’ (Denscombe, 2010, p. 55).

Research questions revolve around ‘How?’ or ‘Why?’ and may be explanatory, exploratory or descriptive in nature (Yin, 2003).

Case study can be used to develop theory. Yin (2003, p. 1) notes that a case study is a way to ‘contribute to our knowledge of individual, group, organisational, social, political and related phenomena’ Case study can be used to test theory: what is it supposed to do and does it do that? Case studies can be used to trace a process, developing an understanding and then test it (Bennett, Andrew).

Data collection [ edit | edit source ]

Case studies generally use a combination of data collection methods.

Multiple case studies [ edit | edit source ]

In multiple cases, research single cases are meaningful in relation to the other cases cited. Multiple case study research needs to use cases that are similar in some ways. The cases become "members of a group or examples of a phenomenon" (Stake, 2006, p. 6). This allows examination of what is similar and dissimilar about the cases. The researcher is looking for patterns and uniqueness, particulars and generalizations in the cases developed.

References and resources [ edit | edit source ]

Denscombe,Martyn (2010)(4th ed). The good research guide for small scale social research projects . Maidenhead: Open University Pres McGraw Hill

Dufour, S. & Foutin, V., ‘Annotated bibliography of case study method’, Current Sociology vol.40/1, 1992, pp.166-181.

Fidel, R. (1984). ‘The Case Study Method: A Case Study’, Library and Information Science Research vol.6/3, pp.273-288.

Garson, G.D. (2008). Case Studies , available from http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/garson/PA765/cases.htm

Gerring, J. (2007). Case Study Research: Principles and Practices , Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Gilbertson, D. W. & Stone, R. J. (1985) (2nd ed). Human resources management: cases and readings . Sydney: McGraw-Hill, 1985.

Giving, L. M. (2008) (ed.), The SAGE Encyclopedia of Qualitative Research Methods, Los Angeles: Sage.

Hossain, Dewan Mahboob (2009). 'Case Study Research' Social Science Research Network http://ssrn.com/abstract=1444863

Marshall, C. & Rossman, G.B. (2006) (4th ed). Designing qualitative research , Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Merriam S. (1998). Qualitative research and case study application in education . San Francisco: Jossey Bass.

Ragin, C.C. & Becker, H.S. (1992), What is a Case? Exploring the foundations of social enquiry , Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Sadler, D. Royce (1985). ‘Evaluation, Policy Analysis and Multiple Case Studies: Aspects of focus and sampling’, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis , vol.7/2, pp.143-149.

Simons (2009). Case study research in practice . London: Sage

Stake, R. E. (1995). The art of case study research . Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.

Stake, R.E. (2006), Multiple Case Study Analysis, New York & London: The Guildford Press.

Soy, Susan K. (1997). The case study as a research method . Available from http://www.ischool.utexas.edu/~ssoy/usesusers/l391d1b.htm

Stoecker, R., ‘Evaluating and rethinking the case study’, The Sociological Review vol.39, no.1, February 1991, pp.88-112.

Yin, R.K. (1989). ‘Case study research design and method’. Applied Social Research Methods Series 5. Newbury Park: Sage

Young, Raymond (2010). Case study research http://ise.canberra.edu.au/raymond/?s=case+study

Zach, L. (2006), ‘Using multiple case studies design to investigate the information-seeking behaviour of arts administrators’, Library Trends vol.55/1, pp.4-21.

See also [ edit | edit source ]

case studies wiki

The x-axis depicts complicated, the simplest form of complexity, at the low-end on the left, and complex, representing the range of all higher forms of complexity on the right.The y-axis suggests how difficult it might be to engineer (or re-engineer) the system to be improved, using Conventional (classical or traditional) SE, at the low-end on the bottom, and Complex SE, representing all more sophisticated forms SE, on the top. This upper range is intended to cover system of systems (SoS) engineering (SoSE), enterprise systems engineering (ESE), as well as Complex SE (CSE).The distinctions among these various forms of SE may be explored by visiting other sections of the SEBoK. In summary, the SEBoK case study editors have placed each case study in one of these four quadrants to provide readers with a suggested characterization of their case study's complexity and difficulty. For sake of compactness the following abbreviations have been used:

Value of Case Studies

Case studies have been used for decades in medicine, law, and business to help students learn fundamentals and to help practitioners improve their practice. A Matrix of Implementation Examples is used to show the alignment of systems engineering case studies to specific areas of the SEBoK. This matrix is intended to provide linkages between each implementation example to the discussion of the systems engineering principles illustrated. The selection of case studies cover a variety of sources, domains, and geographic locations. Both effective and ineffective use of systems engineering principles are illustrated.

The number of publicly available systems engineering case studies is growing. Case studies that highlight the aerospace domain are more prevalent, but there is a growing number of examples beyond this domain.

The United States Air Force Center for Systems Engineering (AF CSE) has developed a set of case studies "to facilitate learning by emphasizing the long-term consequences of the systems engineering/programmatic decisions on cost, schedule, and operational effectiveness." (USAF Center for Systems Engineering 2011) The AF CSE is using these cases to enhance SE curriculum. The cases are structured using the Friedman-Sage framework (Friedman and Sage 2003; Friedman and Sage 2004, 84-96), which decomposes a case into contractor, government, and shared responsibilities in the following nine concept areas:

This framework forms the basis of the case study analysis carried out by the AF CSE. Two of these case studies are highlighted in this SEBoK section, the Hubble Space Telescope Case Study and the Global Positioning System Case Study .

The United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has a catalog of more than fifty NASA-related case studies (NASA 2011). These case studies include insights about both program management and systems engineering. Varying in the level of detail, topics addressed, and source organization, these case studies are used to enhance learning at workshops, training, retreats, and conferences. The use of case studies is viewed as important by NASA since "organizational learning takes place when knowledge is shared in usable ways among organizational members. Knowledge is most usable when it is contextual" (NASA 2011). Case study teaching is a method for sharing contextual knowledge to enable reapplication of lessons learned. The MSTI Case Study is from this catalog.

Works Cited

Friedman, G.R., and A.P. Sage. 2003. Systems Engineering Concepts: Illustration Through Case Studies.

Friedman, G.R., and A.P. Sage. 2004. "Case Studies of Systems Engineering and Management in Systems Acquisition." Systems Engineering. 7 (1): 84-96.

NASA. 2011. A Catalog of NASA-Related Case Studies. Goddard Space Flight Center: Office of the Chief Knowledge Officer, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Updated June 2011. Accessed September 2011. Available: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/pdf/450420main_NASA_Case_Study_Catalog.pdf .

United States Air Force (USAF) Center for Systems Engineering. 2011. Why Case Studies? . Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, USA: Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT), US Air Force. Accessed September 2011. Available: http://www.afit.edu/cse/cases.cfm .

Primary References

Friedman, G., and A.P. Sage. 2004. " Case Studies of Systems Engineering and Management in Systems Acquisition ". Systems Engineering 7(1): 84-96.

Gorod, A., B.E. White, V. Ireland, S.J. Gandhi, and B.J. Sauser. 2014. Case Studies in System of Systems, Enterprise Systems, and Complex Systems Engineering . Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group.

NASA. A Catalog of NASA-Related Case Studies . Greenbelt, MD, USA: Office of the Chief Knowledge Officer, Goddard Space Flight Center, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Updated June 2011. Accessed December 5 2014 at NASA http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/pdf/450420main_NASA_Case_Study_Catalog.pdf .

United States Air Force (USAF) Center for Systems Engineering. 2011. Why Case Studies? . Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH, USA: Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT).

Additional References

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A case study is an in-depth, detailed examination of a particular case (or cases) within a real-world context. [1] [2] For example, case studies in medicine may focus on an individual patient or ailment; case studies in business might cover a particular firm's strategy or a broader market ; similarly, case studies in politics can range from a narrow happening over time (e.g., a specific political campaign) to an enormous undertaking (e.g., a world war ).

Generally, a case study can highlight nearly any individual, group, organization, event, belief system, or action. A case study does not necessarily have to be one observation ( N =1), but may include many observations (one or multiple individuals and entities across multiple time periods, all within the same case study). [3] [4] [5] [6] Research projects involving numerous cases are frequently called cross-case research, whereas a study of a single case is called within-case research. [5] [7]

Case study research has been extensively practiced in both the social and natural sciences . [8] [9] :5–6 [10] [11]

There are multiple definitions of case studies, which may emphasize the number of observations (a small N), the method ( qualitative ), the thickness of the research (a comprehensive examination of a phenomenon and its context), and the naturalism (a "real-life context" is being examined) involved in the research. [12] There is general agreement among scholars that a case study does not necessarily have to entail one observation (N=1), but can include many observations within a single case or across numerous cases. [3] [4] [5] [6] For example, a case study of the French Revolution would at the bare minimum be an observation of two observations: France before and after a revolution. [13] John Gerring writes that the N=1 research design is so rare in practice that it amounts to a "myth". [13]

The term cross-case research is frequently used for studies of multiple cases, whereas within-case research is frequently used for a single case study. [5] [7]

John Gerring defines the case study approach as an "intensive study of a single unit or a small number of units (the cases), for the purpose of understanding a larger class of similar units (a population of cases)". [14] According to Gerring, case studies lend themselves to an idiographic style of analysis, whereas quantitative work lends itself to a nomothetic style of analysis. [15] He adds that "the defining feature of qualitative work is its use of noncomparable observations—observations that pertain to different aspects of a causal or descriptive question", whereas quantitative observations are comparable. [15]

According to John Gerring, the key characteristic that distinguishes case studies from all other methods is the "reliance on evidence drawn from a single case and its attempts, at the same time, to illuminate features of a broader set of cases". [13] Scholars use case studies to shed light on a "class" of phenomena.

Research designs

As with other social science methods, no single research design dominates case study research. Case studies can use at least four types of designs. First, there may be a "no theory first" type of case study design, which is closely connected to Kathleen M. Eisenhardt's methodological work. [16] [17] A second type of research design highlights the distinction between single- and multiple-case studies, following Robert K. Yin's guidelines and extensive examples. [16] [9] A third design deals with a "social construction of reality", represented by the work of Robert E. Stake. [16] [18] Finally, the design rationale for a case study may be to identify "anomalies". A representative scholar of this design is Michael Burawoy. [16] [19] Each of these four designs may lead to different applications, and understanding their sometimes unique ontological and epistemological assumptions becomes important. However, although the designs can have substantial methodological differences, the designs also can be used in explicitly acknowledged combinations with each other.

While case studies can be intended to provide bounded explanations of single cases or phenomena, they are often intended to raise theoretical insights about the features of a broader population. [20]

Case selection and structure

Case selection in case study research is generally intended to find cases that are representative samples and which have variations on the dimensions of theoretical interest. [20] Using that is solely representative, such as an average or typical case is often not the richest in information. In clarifying lines of history and causation it is more useful to select subjects that offer an interesting, unusual, or particularly revealing set of circumstances. A case selection that is based on representativeness will seldom be able to produce these kinds of insights.

While a random selection of cases is a valid case selection strategy in large-N research, there is a consensus among scholars that it risks generating serious biases in small-N research. [21] [22] [20] [23] [24] Random selection of cases may produce unrepresentative cases, as well as uninformative cases. [24] Cases should generally be chosen that have a high expected information gain. [25] [20] [26] For example, outlier cases (those which are extreme, deviant or atypical) can reveal more information than the potentially representative case. [26] [27] [28] A case may also be chosen because of the inherent interest of the case or the circumstances surrounding it. Alternatively, it may be chosen because of researchers' in-depth local knowledge; where researchers have this local knowledge they are in a position to "soak and poke" as Richard Fenno put it, [29] and thereby to offer reasoned lines of explanation based on this rich knowledge of setting and circumstances.

Beyond decisions about case selection and the subject and object of the study, decisions need to be made about the purpose, approach, and process of the case study. Gary Thomas thus proposes a typology for the case study wherein purposes are first identified (evaluative or exploratory), then approaches are delineated (theory-testing, theory-building, or illustrative), then processes are decided upon, with a principal choice being between whether the study is to be single or multiple, and choices also about whether the study is to be retrospective, snapshot or diachronic, and whether it is nested, parallel or sequential. [30]

In a 2015 article, John Gerring and Jason Seawright list seven case selection strategies: [20]

For theoretical discovery, Jason Seawright recommends using deviant cases or extreme cases that have an extreme value on the X variable. [26]

Arend Lijphart, and Harry Eckstein identified five types of case study research designs (depending on the research objectives), Alexander George and Andrew Bennett added a sixth category: [31]

Aaron Rapport reformulated "least-likely" and "most-likely" case selection strategies into the "countervailing conditions" case selection strategy. The countervailing conditions case selection strategy has three components: [32]

In terms of case selection, Gary King, Robert Keohane, and Sidney Verba warn against "selecting on the dependent variable". They argue for example that researchers cannot make valid causal inferences about war outbreaks by only looking at instances where war did happen (the researcher should also look at cases where war did not happen). [22] Scholars of qualitative methods have disputed this claim, however. They argue that selecting the dependent variable can be useful depending on the purposes of the research. [25] [33] [34] Barbara Geddes shares their concerns with selecting the dependent variable (she argues that it cannot be used for theory testing purposes), but she argues that selecting on the dependent variable can be useful for theory creation and theory modification. [35]

King, Keohane, and Verba argue that there is no methodological problem in selecting the explanatory variable, however. They do warn about multicollinearity (choosing two or more explanatory variables that perfectly correlate with each other). [22]

Case studies have commonly been seen as a fruitful way to come up with hypotheses and generate theories. [21] [22] [36] [25] [37] [15] Case studies are useful for understanding outliers or deviant cases. [38] Classic examples of case studies that generated theories includes Darwin's theory of evolution (derived from his travels to the Easter Island), and Douglass North 's theories of economic development (derived from case studies of early developing states, such as England). [37]

Case studies are also useful for formulating concepts , which are an important aspect of theory construction. [39] The concepts used in qualitative research will tend to have higher conceptual validity than concepts used in quantitative research (due to conceptual stretching: the unintentional comparison of dissimilar cases). [25] Case studies add descriptive richness, [40] [34] and can have greater internal validity than quantitative studies. [41] Case studies are suited to explain outcomes in individual cases, which is something that quantitative methods are less equipped to do. [33]

Case studies have been characterized as useful to assess the plausibility of arguments that explain empirical regularities. [42] Case studies are also useful for understanding outliers or deviant cases. [38]

Through fine-gained knowledge and description, case studies can fully specify the causal mechanisms in a way that may be harder in a large-N study. [43] [40] [44] [21] [45] [38] In terms of identifying "causal mechanisms", some scholars distinguish between "weak" and "strong chains". Strong chains actively connect elements of the causal chain to produce an outcome whereas weak chains are just intervening variables. [46]

Case studies of cases that defy existing theoretical expectations may contribute knowledge by delineating why the cases violate theoretical predictions and specifying the scope conditions of the theory. [21] Case studies are useful in situations of causal complexity where there may be equifinality , complex interaction effects and path dependency . [25] [47] They may also be more appropriate for empirical verifications of strategic interactions in rationalist scholarship than quantitative methods. [48] Case studies can identify necessary and insufficient conditions, as well as complex combinations of necessary and sufficient conditions. [25] [33] [49] They argue that case studies may also be useful in identifying the scope conditions of a theory: whether variables are sufficient or necessary to bring about an outcome. [25] [33]

Qualitative research may be necessary to determine whether a treatment is as-if random or not. As a consequence, good quantitative observational research often entails a qualitative component. [15]


Designing Social Inquiry (also called "KKV"), an influential 1994 book written by Gary King, Robert Keohane, and Sidney Verba, primarily applies lessons from regression-oriented analysis to qualitative research, arguing that the same logics of causal inference can be used in both types of research. [22] [50] [39] The authors' recommendation is to increase the number of observations (a recommendation that Barbara Geddes also makes in Paradigms and Sand Castles ), [35] because few observations make it harder to estimate multiple causal effects, as well as increase the risk that there is measurement error , and that an event in a single case was caused by random error or unobservable factors. [22] KKV sees process-tracing and qualitative research as being "unable to yield strong causal inference" due to the fact that qualitative scholars would struggle with determining which of many intervening variables truly links the independent variable with a dependent variable. The primary problem is that qualitative research lacks a sufficient number of observations to properly estimate the effects of an independent variable. They write that the number of observations could be increased through various means, but that would simultaneously lead to another problem: that the number of variables would increase and thus reduce degrees of freedom . [39] Christopher H. Achen and Duncan Snidal similarly argue that case studies are not useful for theory construction and theory testing. [51]

The purported "degrees of freedom" problem that KKV identify is widely considered flawed; while quantitative scholars try to aggregate variables to reduce the number of variables and thus increase the degrees of freedom, qualitative scholars intentionally want their variables to have many different attributes and complexity. [52] [25] For example, James Mahoney writes, "the Bayesian nature of process tracing explains why it is inappropriate to view qualitative research as suffering from a small-N problem and certain standard causal identification problems." [53] By using Bayesian probability , it may be possible to makes strong causal inferences from a small sliver of data. [54] [55]

KKV also identify inductive reasoning in qualitative research as a problem, arguing that scholars should not revise hypotheses during or after data has been collected because it allows for ad hoc theoretical adjustments to fit the collected data. [56] However, scholars have pushed back on this claim, noting that inductive reasoning is a legitimate practice (both in qualitative and quantitative research). [57]

A commonly described limit of case studies is that they do not lend themselves to generalizability. [22] Due to the small number of cases, it may be harder to ensure that the chosen cases are representative of the larger population. [41] Some scholars, such as Bent Flyvbjerg, have pushed back on that notion. [36]

As small-N research should not rely on random sampling, scholars must be careful in avoiding selection bias when picking suitable cases. [21] A common criticism of qualitative scholarship is that cases are chosen because they are consistent with the scholar's preconceived notions, resulting in biased research. [21] [36] Alexander George and Andrew Bennett also note that a common problem in case study research is that of reconciling conflicting interpretations of the same data. [25] Another limit of case study research is that it can be hard to estimate the magnitude of causal effects. [58]

Teaching case studies

Teachers may prepare a case study that will then be used in classrooms in the form of a "teaching" case study (also see case method and casebook method). For instance, as early as 1870 at Harvard Law School, Christopher Langdell departed from the traditional lecture-and-notes approach to teaching contract law and began using cases pled before courts as the basis for class discussions. [59] By 1920, this practice had become the dominant pedagogical approach used by law schools in the United States. [60]

case studies wiki

Outside of law, teaching case studies have become popular in many different fields and professions, ranging from business education to science education. The Harvard Business School has been among the most prominent developers and users of teaching case studies. [61] [62] Teachers develop case studies with particular learning objectives in mind. Additional relevant documentation, such as financial statements, time-lines, short biographies, and multimedia supplements (such as video-recordings of interviews) often accompany the case studies. Similarly, teaching case studies have become increasingly popular in science education, covering different biological and physical sciences. The National Center for Case Studies in Teaching Science has made a growing body of teaching case studies available for classroom use, for university as well as secondary school coursework. [63] [64]

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How to Cite a Case Study

Last Updated: February 12, 2023 References

This article was co-authored by wikiHow staff writer, Jennifer Mueller, JD . Jennifer Mueller is a wikiHow Content Creator. She specializes in reviewing, fact-checking, and evaluating wikiHow's content to ensure thoroughness and accuracy. Jennifer holds a JD from Indiana University Maurer School of Law in 2006. This article has been viewed 35,205 times. Learn more...

Particularly in research for business studies or papers in the social sciences, you may want to cite a case study completed by a university or other organization. While case studies have titles and publication information like other articles, they often have a unique case study number that is typically included in your citation. While Chicago citation style is most frequently used in business schools, you may also use the American Psychological Association (APA) or Modern Language Association (MLA) style.

Sample Citations

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Erinoff EG. Feasibility Study of a Wiki Collaboration Platform for Systematic Reviews [Internet]. Rockville (MD): Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (US); 2011 Sep.

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Appendix d case study: community of practice based on a wiki.

The Agence d'évaluation des technologies et des modes d'intervention en santé (AETMIS), the Canadian government agency in the province of Quebec responsible for health services and technology assessment, decided to look into using a wiki to share information about their research projects about three years ago. Most researchers are on contract and are far-flung, working at home approximately three days a week. “We have developed a community of practice based on a wiki,” says Reiner Banken, M.D., Deputy Director of AETMIS. The wiki helps researchers and staff members think together about their shared interests and research in their community of practice.

Communities of practice are “groups of people who share a concern, a set of problems, or a passion about a topic, and who deepen their knowledge and expertise in this area by interacting on an ongoing basis”. 6 A wiki provides a way to create, nurture and sustain an intellectual community of this nature without its members ever physically coming together by providing them with an asynchronous electronic meeting space.

For its meeting space, AETMIS chose TikiWiki, an open-source, Web-based application. According to the Open Source Initiative, “Open source is a development method for software that harnesses the power of distributed peer review and transparency of process.” (Available at: http://www.opensource.org/ ). Currently, TikiWiki is actively developed by a large international community, and “can be used to create all sorts of Web applications, sites, portals, knowledge base, intranets, and extranets.” (See the TikiWiki Fact Sheet, available at: http://info.tikiwiki.org/Fact+Sheet ).

AETMIS uses TikiWiki as a wiki-based intranet/extranet. The agency found that this platform has the “great advantage of a very well developed system of permissions for accessing pages, and we are using this system to create collaborative workspace for researchers,” says Banken. AETMIS also uses TikiWiki as the platform for the INAHTA/HTAi glossary [The International Network of Agencies for Health Technology Assessment/Health Technology Assessment International (HTAi)]. The agency used TikiWiki as a project management and information sharing tool for organizing the HTAi 2008 meeting. Currently AETMIS is working with TikiWiki developers on bibliographic database tools and mind-mapping applications. As TikiWiki is open source, all developments become part of future releases.

The AETMIS staff learned to use TikiWiki by pairing up staff members and having the more computer-savvy staff (regardless of age) teach the staff members who were less experienced with using computers to use the wiki. This process took time, but eventually staff members adapted to the wiki. Initially, AETMIS began with an intranet, but now the agency has an extranet so that external researchers can also participate in the community of practice, and exchange information and ideas. Now researchers are beginning to collaborate on writing.

“The fundamental elements of a Community of Practice are: a domain of knowledge, a community of people and shared practices. Wikis can be seen as a supporting technology for a Community of Practice: they enable users to discuss around a page representing a concept, they adapt to situations in which knowledge changes quickly, and they do not impose any extra overhead on those who want to contribute.” 37

Going forward, Banken says, “We plan to use the wiki to interact with stakeholders on research projects. Our reports should make sense to all of the stakeholders involved. It's very difficult to involve all of our stakeholders in the process. The wiki is another tools that we can use making our work transparent to them, helping them understand what we do, and involving them in our work.”

Screen shots and additional information are available at Wiki at AETMIS.

[This section authored by Jeanette de Richemond, Ph.D. Candidate, Communication, Library and Information Science, and Media Studies at Rutgers University]

Listing of Patterns and Abstracted Case Studies from WikiPatterns 5

Figure shows four lists that are selected WikiPatterns. These four WikiPatterns are: People Patterns, People Anti-Patterns, Adoption Patterns, and Adoption-Anti-Patterns.

Figure D-1 Selected WikiPatterns

Source: www.wikipatterns.com/display/wikipatterns/Wikipatterns

Table D-1 Abstracted case studies from WikiPatterns

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OER Case Studies

Featured OER Case Studies

The following is a list of the some of the most compelling OER projects and implementations of CC in educational policies around the world. For a more comprehensive listing, see the Case Studies project.

Started in 2002, Gleducar is a community of educators, students, and activists that self-organize around several educational issues and projects. It was declared of National Interest by the Senate of Argentina three years later and is considered one of the most important open educational projects in Argentina. The community is supported by Gleducar's nonprofit/NGO status. [1] Community initiatives revolve around building a repository of open educational resources (OER), promoting more open intellectual property and educational policies, encouraging the use of free technologies and distributed networks, open access, and educational innovation in general. All content on Gleducar is licensed under a CC Attribution-ShareAlike license .

Started in 2012, Encipel is an educational community in which users of any gender and age, create documents to share their knowledge. These documents are then reviewed and improved by the community, offering a better quality of content. We use the license CC BY-NC 3.0. [2] . So all the information is open to everyone. We have decided to use this license because we want people to enhance knowledge an it´s distribution Since the start we have improved the information, quality of the site an tools available for users. It´s still a very unknown project, but we expect it can grow more.

University of Southern Queensland OpenCourseWare

The University of Southern Queensland’s OpenCourseWare (USQ OCW) provides access to free and open educational resources (OER) for students, academics, and interested readers worldwide. USQ OCW contains sample courses from each of the University’s five faculties, together with courses from its Tertiary Preparation Program . USQ is the only Australian member of the OpenCourseWare Consortium , an wallputih international collaboration of more than 230 higher education institutions and associated organisations ‘creating a broad and deep body of open educational content using a shared model.’ All USQ OCW is available under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike .

OER-Brazil Project

The OER-Brazil Project, or Recursos Educacionais Abertos 4shared , is a website aimed at providing information on Open Educational Resources (OER) for Portuguese language speakers. The site features an extensive FAQ pointing to reference documents, media, and more. The site lists OER projects from Brazil and the rest of the world highlighting their CC license implementations. The OER-Brazil Project also provides information on current bills that aim to promote OER in Brazil if approved, and hopes to engage Brazilian society in the discussions and improvement of such policies. English language navigation of the site is in progress.

Athabasca University

Athabasca University is Canada's open university that is aiming to replace as many of their course materials with open educational resources (OER) and is home to the worlds first University Press dedicated to open access publishing, where authors choose whether to release their work under a CC Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives license . Athabasca University is also the base for the UNESCO OER Community that was first launched in 2005. Athabasca University OER is available under various CC licenses and the UNESCO OER Community publishes all content under CC Attribution-ShareAlike .

The BCcampus initiative is a collaboration of 25 post-secondary institutions contributing and sharing open educational resources under the CC Attribution-ShareAlike license or a BCcampus license for use within the system. It is an "online learning and educational technology service agency established and funded entirely by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development." BCcampus also manages an Open Textbook Project and recently gathered a group of librarians interested in furthering OER called BCOER .

Ontario Online Learning Portal

In addition to hosting OER, the Ontario Online Learning Portal has developed this OER video primer featuring UNESCO/Commonwealth of Learning Chair in Open Educational Resources Dr. Rory McGreal: http://contactnorth.ca/tips-tools/open-educational-resources/videos .

Cybertesis at the Universidad de Chile

Cybertesis is a joint publishing program for academic theses online, and is an initiative of the Université de Montreal, the Université Lyon2 and the Universidad de Chile, among other 50 institutions in Europe, Africa and America. It is financially supported by Fonds Francophone des Inforoutes and UNESCO. The objective of Cybertesis is to promote the publication and diffusion of university theses online, implementing international standards for digital publishing, and technology that facilitate the access and interchange of information, based on interoperable and open source tools. Cybertesis supports the copyrights of its authors, by explaining the law and asking the authors for authorization to include their works in the system. Cybertesis offers several options, such as “not authorizing”, “embargo” (which allows postponing the release of the works temporally), and licensing with Creative Commons. The Creative Commons licensing system has become the standard adopted by Cybertesis to manage the rights of authors.

Eduteka is a primary and secondary educational portal for Spanish language open educational resources (OER) offered under a default of CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike . It is supported and run by the Gabriel Piedrahita Uribe Foundation in Colombia and has been awarded the National Prize for Technology in Education twice by the Iberoamerican Network for Technology in Education. Eduteka has also run pilot programs, incorporating OER into schools in order to "[increase] the competency of students and teachers in ICTs" and "[improve] the integration of these technologies into the regular curriculum."

Escuela Virtual del Deporte

The Escuela Virtual del Deporte , or the Virtual School of Sports, leverages CC licensing and tools offered by ICT (Information Technology and Communication) to make available open educational resources (OER) in sports education. It is a collaboration between the Universidad Pedagogica Nacional, the United Nations Program for Development, and Colombia Aprende, and was created within the framework of government policies aimed at overcoming the digital divide. All content is available under CC Attribution-ShareAlike .

Virtual School for Latin America and the Caribbean

The Virtual School for Latin America and the Caribbean is an initiative of the United Nations Development Programme Regional Bureau and provides training in the applied sciences for social transformation in three academic areas: Human Development (HD), Democratic Governance (DG) and Crisis Prevention and Recovery (CPR). Its mission is "to strengthen democratic governance and contribute to human development in Latin America and the Caribbean." School resources are licensed under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike or CC Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives .

Czech Republic

Rvp metodicky portal.

The RVP Metodicky Portal is an educational portal to Czech open educational resources (OER) licensed under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike and CC Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives . It is a government-funded initiative by the Czech Republic and the European Social Fund, and is run as part of a research project by the Institute of Education in Prague and the National Institute of Vocational Education. The project aims to provide "systematic support for teachers in teaching methodology and didactics, development of learning communities," and more "effective ways of learning."

Le Mill is an online community for "finding, authoring and sharing" open educational resources (OER). Le Mill was developed by the LeMill team led by the Learning Environments Research Group of Media Lab at the University of Art and Design Helsinki, Finland. As of November 2010, Le Mill has nearly ~15,000 teachers contributing from 63 countries and almost 24,000 learning resources in 83 languages. Le Mill resources are licensed under CC Attribution-ShareAlike .

Open Education Project

Open Education Project is a crowd sourced platform of free books and education tools that are made available online. It is supported by the Open Knowledge Foundation (OKFN), India [3] . All content are free to be downloaded and printed by educators in the country. The Project uses CC licenses, specifically [ http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/ CC Attribution 3.0 Unported ] and CC Attribution-ShareAlike , to further distribution, translation and reuse of its works. It especially aims to reach out to economically challenged children with education. There is already quite a large collection of books and educational materials in the project's database.

Pratham Books

Pratham Books is a non-profit children's book publishing house in India that uses CC licenses, specifically CC Attribution and CC Attribution-ShareAlike , to further distribution, translation and reuse of its works. The books are available for purchase at low cost or for free online at their Scribd channel . Pratham Books also has a Flickr account where they publish pictures of their community under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike .

Computer Masti

Computer Masti (CM) is a series of books, activities, and interactive content for computer education in primary schools in India. It is a research-based product created at the IIT Bombay in collaboration with InOPEN, a tech start-up that works with Free and Open Source (FOSS) technologies. The books are available online under a CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike with additional permissions for commercial use via CC plus (more info to come in their legal section). Site content is licensed under CC Attribution .

National Programme on Technology Enhanced Learning (NPTEL)

NPTEL is a large OER publishing project of India. It is operated by a network of federal academic and research institutions in India and is funded by the Ministry of HRD. NPTEL has published 770 full courses in English as of this year (each course contains lecture material equal to about 30 hours). They cover mainly STEM topics and are popular (about 117 million views on YouTube, for example, for some of the published courses).

Back in July 2012, NPTEL adopted CC BY SA NC licenses. As of Sep 2014, NPTEL has removed the NC restriction and all materials now are CC BY SA. Here is an official note of NPTEL that explains the rationale for adoption of CC licenses.

National Repository of Open Educational Resources

The NROER is licensed under CC BY-SA.


In the spirit of OpenCourseWare and the Khan Academy, OpenSecurityTraining.info is dedicated to sharing training material for computer security classes, on any topic, that are at least one day long. This site is always seeking new collaborators to broaden the available training, but already has training on assembly languages, reverse engineering, malware analysis, exploits, vulnerability assessment, trusted computing, android forensics, and other topics. Resources are licensed under CC Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 (unported) .


The group oer at GitLab collects OER under free and open licenses in a Git infrastructure. Most OER are reveal.js HTML presentations generated from source documents in the lightweight markup language Org mode with the free/libre open source software emacs-reveal . The use of a lightweight markup language enables (a) collaborative maintenance of OER with Git mechanisms and (b) the separation of contents from layout (possibly according to different organizational conventions). In addition, emacs-reveal embeds license information for figures in machine-readable RDFa format (based on CC REL ).

I-CLEEN project

I-CLEEN I-CLEEN is a collaborative project among teachers, willing to create a free database of resources (an information gateway) already tested in the classrooms, aiming to an interactive education of Earth System Science topics. I-CLEEN is a web project by the Science Museum of Trento (former Tridentine Museum of Natural Sciences). The project won the eLearning award 2010 . All the parts that make up the project and all their respective activities are fully dealt with using an open source web platform called LifeRay specifically implemented for this project. Resources are licensed under CC Attribution 3.0 (Italy)


Wikiwijs is an open educational resources (OER) platform for teachers launched by the Dutch Ministry of Education to "stimulate development and use of OER", "improve access to both open and 'closed' digital learning materials", "support teachers in arranging their own learning materials and professionalization", and to "increase teacher involvement in development and use of OER." Wikiwijs builds on the wiki philosophy of Wikipedia but customizes an existing OER platform, Connexions , to host and distribute its content. Wikiwijs is focused on all levels of education, from primary to higher education. All content on Wikiwijs is available under CC BY .

New Zealand

OER NZ is a joint effort by the New Zealand Ministry of Education and the OER Foundation to build an open educational resources (OER) portal for New Zealand schools. In keeping with the New Zealand Government Open Access and Licensing (NZGOAL) framework , which specifically recommends "the licensing of government copyright works for re-use using Creative Commons licences and recommends the use of ‘no-known rights’ statements for non-copyright material," a national portal for OER would involve building a "sustainable Open Education Resource (OER) ecosystem for New Zealand teachers to create, share, repurpose and reuse digital content in support of the national curriculum." All content will be under CC Attribution or otherwise meet the free cultural works definition .

Otago Polytechnic

Otago Polytechnic is a publicly-subsidised vocational education and training organisation in Dunedin, New Zealand, that offers a range of open access training courses. Otago Polytechnic is the first tertiary institution in the world to adopt a default CC Attribution policy and the first New Zealand tertiary institution to sign the Cape Town Open Education Declaration .

Norwegian National Digital Learning Arena (NDLA)

The Norwegian National Digital Learning Arena (NDLA) is an open educational resources (OER) project and open source platform for sharing OER in secondary education. It is a joint initiative by different provinces in Norway that allocates a portion of state funds to ensure free access to textbooks for Norwegian students and to develop digital resources (or purchase from publishers or other producers) that are released under CC Attribution-ShareAlike . In just a few years, the project has produced a large amount of OER.

Orange Academy (Akademia Orange)

Orange Academy (Akademia Orange) is a grant program for cultural education projects that is funded by the Orange Foundation (Fundacja Orange), a nonprofit, charitable branch of the Polish part of the Orange telecom operator. The licensing policy for all content funded through the Orange Academy is CC Attribution . The Orange Academy funds around 30 grants per year at ~$17,000 each, and funded projects focus on the Internet and modern technology as educational tools.

We Read While We're Listening (Czytamy słuchając)

We Read While We're Listening (Czytamy słuchając) is an open educational resources project by the Modern Poland Foundation (which is part of the Coalition for Open Education) and the Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. The project creates free access to audio versions of obligatory school reading material (the Polish school system has a list of 200+ books which are obligatory reading at different levels of curriculum, considered the cultural canon) by recording audiobooks by professional actors. The books are in the public domain, and the professional recordings are licensed under CC Attribution-ShareAlike .

South Africa

Siyavula is working with local communities of teachers to incorporate and create educational materials under CC BY-SA.

OER Africa is a network of projects that enables active participation by educators and other stakeholders in the improvement of education systems in Africa. Originally founded in 1992 by the South African Institute for Distance Education (Saide) to address the educational inequalities in post-apartheid South Africa, OER Africa now consists of a number of robust initiatives across the continent, including the African Health OER Network, AgShare project (Agricultural OER), and open university policies such as the default CC BY license policy for all Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology materials. The OER Africa site and its materials is also defaulted under CC BY.

South Korea

SNOW is an open knowledge platform for sharing higher education content. From lectures in the humanities, sciences, design to great addresses given by global leaders, SNOW offers Korean scripts and introductions on these academic subjects, encouraging its users to participate as volunteers who can participate in the OER movement through translations, distribution and creation of their own resources. As of February 2010, SNOW contained 260 Korean script-supported lectures including 145 lectures from TED, 95 voluntarily translated by users. All SNOW content is available under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives .

Korea University OpenCourseWare

Korea University firstly launched its open courseware program in 2009, after joining the OCW consortium in 2007. Korea University OpenCourseWare provides lecture materials for ten departments, including the departments of Technology, Law, and Education. Korea University is also organizing open courseware (Korea Open Courseware) among domestic universities. Including Korea University, nine universities have implemented open courseware policies: Kyunghee University, Kyunghee Cyber University, Pukyung University, Pusan University, Sangmyung University, Seoul National University of Technology, Inha University, and Dongguck University. Korea University OCW is under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-NoDerivatives while other universities, such as Kyunghee University OCW , have implemented CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike .

Coding Everybody

Coding everybody.png

Coding Everybody is non-profit project for programming education; open tutorials for novice, common people and even child and elders, developer and founder of this project, Egoing is now covering web-service making, various programming languages, client server development, development toolkit, and other programming knowledge. On this blog and repository, users can access dictionary and repository on programming knowledge with Going Lee’s own voice guideline with screenshots and other multimedia resource, with very easy and considerable teaching for first learner on programming. All course is free and open for everyone; tutorials cover many programming parts and constantly updated by Going Lee with vigorous open conversation with his users. Courses and video clips of Coding Everybody are under CC Attribution

Learning Playground

Learning playground.PNG

Learning Playground is non-progit, learning innovation project founded by Sung-Keun Lee, elementary school teacher, project lead. Learning Playground is the outbreak learning and study habit innovation project by in-office elementary school teachers, providing students to grow one’s own learning habit without private academy. Teachers make video clips on current elementary school’s curriculum with their own effort as volunteerism. Now 2,500 more video clips and DIY OER contents created by not only teachers but also students are uploaded on this repository for everyone who want to learn without high price private academy. On March 2015, now Learning Playground has 2 million users and 10 million hits so far.

Sub-Saharan Africa

TESSA is a research and development project that works to create open educational resources (OER) and course design guidance for educators across Sub-Saharan Africa under CC BY-SA.

United Kingdom

OpenLearn is an initiative by the Open University (OU), the United Kingdom's distance learning and research university with an open policy for entry. OU has been a pioneer in making learning materials freely available through its successful partnership with the BBC, and now with OpenLearn, it offers a full range of Open University subject areas from access to postgraduate level and has seen millions of visitors since launch. The aim of OpenLearn is to reduce the costs of course development for everyone in education and improve quality by openly sharing quality-assured educational materials under CC Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike .

Citizen Maths

Citizen Maths is "a mix of short online videos and hands-on activities" designed for the self-paced learner of math online. All materials are licensed CC BY for anyone to use and remix.

United States

Open course library.

Washington State’s Open Course Library is a large scale effort to make core college course materials available on the Web for $30 or less per class. Faculty from Washington State Community and Technical Colleges are working together to design 81 high enrollment, gatekeeper and pre-college courses for face-to-face, hybrid and/or online delivery. The goal of the Open Course Library is to improve course completion rates, lower textbook costs for students, provide new resources for faculty to use in their courses, and for the SBCTC system to fully engage the global open educational resources discussion. This last point is straight from a guiding principle of our college system's Strategic Technology Plan to “cultivate the culture and practice of using and contributing to open educational resources.”

Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant program

The TAACCCT is a grant fund cooperatively administered through the U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Education. The program makes available US $2 billion over the next four years for grants that will “provide community colleges and other eligible institutions of higher education with funds to expand and improve their ability to deliver education and career training programs.” The solicitation for grant applications (PDF) requires that all resources created using these funds must be released under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY) license.

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Education/Case Studies

Case_studies</tvar>|_click_here_to_learn_more]]." data-mw-thread-id="h-attention_the_community_programs_team_needs_new_case_studies_submit_your_case_"> attention the community programs team needs new case studies submit your case study and get featured in a new brochure. [[<tvar|lm>case_studies</tvar>| click here to learn more]]..

case studies wiki

Since Wikipedia began in 2001, educators around the world have integrated the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit into their curriculum. In 2010, the Wikimedia Foundation started the Wikipedia Education Program to provide more support for educators who are interested in using Wikipedia as a teaching tool.

In the following pages, educators will explain Wikipedia assignments they’ve used to meet learning objectives for their courses. They will also explain how they assessed or graded these assignments. These case studies can help you form a plan for how you can use Wikipedia as a teaching tool in your class.

Published case studies [ edit ]

Case Studies: Assignments [ edit ]

Case Studies: Grading [ edit ]

Write your own case study! Help us learn from your experience! [ edit ]

To get started, fill out the form box below with a descriptive title. Once you have chosen that title, click the "Draft a case study!" button, and you will be taken to a page where you can start drafting your case study.

Current Drafts [ edit ]

( Purge the cache of this page in case a recent draft does not yet appear here)

No pages meet these criteria.

External links [ edit ]

case studies wiki

Cumulative case studies

Cumulative case studies aggregate information from several sites collected at different times. The cumulative case study can have a retrospective focus, collecting information across studies done in the past, or a prospective outlook, structuring a series of investigations for different times in the future. Retrospective cumulation allows generalization without cost and time of conducting numerous new case studies; prospective cumulation also allows generalization without unmanageably large numbers of cases in process at any one time.

The techniques for ensuring sufficient comparability and quality and for aggregating the information constitute the "cumulative" part of the methodology. Features of the cumulative case study include the case survey method (used as a means of aggregating findings) and backfill techniques. The latter aid in retrospective cumulation as a means of obtaining information from authors that permits use of otherwise insufficiently detailed case studies.

Opinions vary as to the credibility of cumulative case studies for answering program implementation and effects questions. One authority notes that publication biases may favor programs that seem to work, which could lead to a misleading positive view (Berger, 1983). Others raise concerns about problems in verifying the quality of the original data and analyses (Yin, 1989).

Medical case studies

In medical science case studies are considered "Class V" evidence, and are thus the least suggestive of all forms of medical evidence. [1]


History of the case study

As a distinct approach to research, use of the case study originated only in the early 20th century. The Oxford English Dictionary traces the phrase case study or case-study back as far as 1934, after the establishment of the concept of a case history in medicine.

The use of case studies for the creation of new theory in social sciences has been further developed by the sociologists Barney Glaser and Anselm Strauss who presented their research method, Grounded theory , in 1967.

The popularity of case studies as research tools has developed only in recent decades. One of the areas in which case studies have been gaining popularity is education and in particular educational evaluation. Some of the prominent scholars in educational case study are Robert Stake and Jan Nespor (see references). Case studies have, of course, also been used as a teaching method and as part of professional development. They are well-known in business and legal education. The problem-based learning (PBL) movement is one of the examples. When used in (non-business) education and professional development, case studies are often referred to as critical incidents (see David Tripp in references).

Generalizing from case studies

The case study is effective for generalizing using the type of test that Karl Popper called falsification , which forms part of critical reflexivity [1] . Falsification is one of the most rigorous tests to which a scientific proposition can be subjected: if just one observation does not fit with the proposition it is considered not valid generally and must therefore be either revised or rejected. Popper himself used the now famous example of, "All swans are white," and proposed that just one observation of a single black swan would falsify this proposition and in this way have general significance and stimulate further investigations and theory-building. The case study is well suited for identifying "black swans" because of its in-depth approach: what appears to be "white" often turns out on closer examination to be "black."

For instance, Galileo Galilei ’s rejection of Aristotle ’s law of gravity was based on a case study selected by information-oriented sampling and not random sampling. The rejection consisted primarily of a conceptual experiment and later on of a practical one. These experiments, with the benefit of hindsight, are self-evident. Nevertheless, Aristotle’s incorrect view of gravity dominated scientific inquiry for nearly two thousand years before it was falsified. In his experimental thinking, Galileo reasoned as follows: if two objects with the same weight are released from the same height at the same time, they will hit the ground simultaneously, having fallen at the same speed. If the two objects are then stuck together into one, this object will have double the weight and will according to the Aristotelian view therefore fall faster than the two individual objects. This conclusion seemed contradictory to Galileo. The only way to avoid the contradiction was to eliminate weight as a determinant factor for acceleration in free fall. Galileo’s experimentalism did not involve a large random sample of trials of objects falling from a wide range of randomly selected heights under varying wind conditions, and so on. Rather, it was a matter of a single experiment, that is, a case study.(Flyvbjerg, 2006, p. 225-6) [2]

Galileo’s view continued to be subjected to doubt, however, and the Aristotelian view was not finally rejected until half a century later, with the invention of the air pump. The air pump made it possible to conduct the ultimate experiment, known by every pupil, whereby a coin or a piece of lead inside a vacuum tube falls with the same speed as a feather. After this experiment, Aristotle’s view could be maintained no longer. What is especially worth noting, however, is that the matter was settled by an individual case due to the clever choice of the extremes of metal and feather. One might call it a critical case , for if Galileo’s thesis held for these materials, it could be expected to be valid for all or a large range of materials. Random and large samples were at no time part of the picture. However it was Galileo's view that was the subject of doubt as it was not reasonable enough to be the Aristotelian view. By selecting cases strategically in this manner one may arrive at case studies that allow generalization.(Flyvbjerg, 2006, p. 225-6) For more on generalizing from case studies, see [3]


1. Cases selected based on dimensions of a theory (pattern-matching) or on diversity on a dependent phenomenon (explanation-building).

2. No generalization to a population beyond cases similar to those studied.

3. Conclusions should be phrased in terms of model elimination, not model validation. Numerous alternative theories may be consistent with data gathered from a case study.

4. Case study approaches have difficulty in terms of evaluation of low-probability causal paths in a model as any given case selected for study may fail to display such a path, even when it exists in the larger population of potential cases.


The case study offers a method of learning about a complex instance through extensive description and contextual analysis. The product articulates why the instance occurred as it did, and what one might usefully explore in similar situations.

Case studies can generate a great deal of data that may defy straightforward analysis. For details on conducting a case study, especially with regard to data collection and analysis, see the references listed below.

  • Casebook method
  • Case method
  • Case study in psychology
  • Single-subject design
  • ↑ Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Flyvbjerg06

Useful Sources

  • Baxter, P and Jack, S. (2008) Qualitative Case Study Methodology: Study design and implementation for novice researchers, in The Qualitative Report , 13(4): 544-559. Available from [4]
  • Dul, J. and Hak, T (2008). Case Study Methodology in Business Research. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann. ISBN 978-0-7506-8196-4 .
  • Eisenhardt, K. M. (1989). Building theories from case study research. The Academy of Management Review , 14 (4), Oct, 532-550. DOI : 10.2307/258557
  • Flyvbjerg, Bent. (2006). Five Misunderstandings About Case-Study Research, in Qualitative Inquiry , 12(2): 219-245. Available: [5]
  • Bent Flyvbjerg , Making Social Science Matter: Why Social Inquiry Fails and How It Can Succeed Again (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press , 2001). ISBN 052177568X
  • George, Alexander L. and Bennett,Andrew. (2005). Case studies and theory development in the social sciences . London, MIT Press 2005. ISBN 0-262-57222-2
  • Gerring, John. (2005) Case Study Research . New York: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-67656-4
  • Hancké, Bob. (2009) Intelligent Research Design. A guide for beginning researchers in the social sciences . Oxford University Press.
  • Lijphart, Arend.(1971)Comparative Politics and the Comparative Method,in The American Political Science Review , 65(3): 682-693. Available from [6]
  • Ragin, Charles C. and Becker, Howard S. eds. (1992) What is a Case? Exploring the Foundations of Social Inquiry Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 0521421888
  • Scholz, Roland W. and Tietje, Olaf. (2002) Embedded Case Study Methods. Integrating Quantitative and Qualitative Knowledge . Sage Publications. Thousand Oaks 2002, Sage. ISBN 0761919465 ,9337270973
  • Straits, Bruce C. and Singleton, Royce A. (2004) Approaches to Social Research , 4th ed. Oxford University Press . ISBN 0195147944 Available from: [7]

External links

  • The Case Study as a Research Method
  • Case Studies
  • Darden Business Case Studies
  • ETH Zurich: Case studies in Environmental Sciences


  • 1 Race and intelligence (test data)
  • 2 Pregnancy fetishism
  • 3 Filipino psychology

case studies wiki


  1. Wikipedia education program_case_studies

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  2. Case Studies

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  3. Best Practice Strategies to Implement Case Studies Across the

    case studies wiki

  4. Case Studies

    case studies wiki

  5. Case Study

    case studies wiki

  6. Case Studies

    case studies wiki


  1. Case study

    A case study is an in-depth, detailed examination of a particular case (or cases) within a real-world context. For example, case studies in medicine may focus on an individual patient or ailment; case studies in business might cover a particular firm's strategy or a broader market; similarly, case studies in politics can range from a narrow happening over time (e.g., a specific political ...

  2. Case-control study

    A case-control study (also known as case-referent study) is a type of observational study in which two existing groups differing in outcome are identified and compared on the basis of some supposed causal attribute. Case-control studies are often used to identify factors that may contribute to a medical condition by comparing subjects who have that condition/disease (the "cases") with ...

  3. 4 Ways to Write a Case Study

    There are also various uses for writing case studies, from academic research purposes to provision of corporate proof points. There are approximately four types of case studies: illustrative (descriptive of events), exploratory (investigative), cumulative (collective information comparisons) and critical (examine particular subject with cause ...

  4. 3 Ways to Do a Case Study

    5. Plan for a long-term study. Most academic case studies last at least 3-6 months, and many of them continue for years. You may be limited by your research funding or the length of your degree program, but you should allow a few weeks to conduct the study at the very least. 6. Design your research strategy in detail.

  5. What Is a Case Study?

    Published on May 8, 2019 by Shona McCombes . Revised on January 30, 2023. A case study is a detailed study of a specific subject, such as a person, group, place, event, organization, or phenomenon. Case studies are commonly used in social, educational, clinical, and business research. A case study research design usually involves qualitative ...

  6. 5 Ways to Write a Management Case Study

    1. Explain the aim of the case study in the opening paragraph. The goal may be to understand the challenges of an organization or to solve interdepartmental conflicts. [3] 2. Provide an industry or company overview. Certain facts or challenges may be common in the particular industry.

  7. How to Analyse a Case Study: 8 Steps (with Pictures)

    1. Examine and describe the business environment relevant to the case study. [1] Describe the nature of the organization under consideration and its competitors. Provide general information about the market and customer base. Indicate any significant changes in the business environment or any new endeavors upon which the business is embarking. 2.

  8. Case study

    Case study is often defined in different ways, reflecting evolving practice. What is important then is to define the concept for yourself, and explain to your audience how you are using the term. Some definitions A research approach in which one or few instances of a phenomenon are studied in depth (Given, 2008).

  9. Case Studies

    Expanding the Wanted List There is a long list of completed case studies but CC is open to new fresh ideas. If you feel there is need for a particular Case Study to be represented, you could as well give us your idea and it could be considered and implemented. To find out more on how to contribute vibrant ideas to CC case studies follow this ...

  10. Case Studies

    Case studies have been used for decades in medicine, law, and business to help students learn fundamentals and to help practitioners improve their practice. A Matrix of Implementation Examples is used to show the alignment of systems engineering case studies to specific areas of the SEBoK. This matrix is intended to provide linkages between ...

  11. List of medical ethics cases

    The study was trying to induce stuttering in healthy children. The experiment became national news in the San Jose Mercury News in 2001, and a book was written. On 17 August 2007, six of the orphan children were awarded $925,000 by the State of Iowa for lifelong psychological and emotional scars caused by six months of torment during the Iowa ...

  12. Case study

    A case study is an in-depth, detailed examination of a particular case (or cases) within a real-world context. For example, case studies in medicine may focus on an individual patient or ailment; case studies in business might cover a particular firm's strategy or a broader market; similarly, case studies in politics can range from a narrow happening over time (e.g., a specific political ...

  13. 4 Ways to Cite a Case Study

    1. Provide the author's name first. The full citation in your "Works Cited" page begins with the names of the author or authors of the case study. Write the author's name with their last name first, then a comma, then their first name and middle initial (if available).

  14. Case studies

    Welcome to the Outreach Case Studies Portal! The Community Programs team needs new case studies that highlight current and diverse programs whether in GLAM, Education, STEM, Gender Gap, or other programmatic areas. We have created a series of templates for creating consistent case studies, that should make it simpler for you to share your story, and make sure that the best programs get ...

  15. Case Study: Community of Practice Based on a Wiki

    The Agence d'évaluation des technologies et des modes d'intervention en santé (AETMIS), the Canadian government agency in the province of Quebec responsible for health services and technology assessment, decided to look into using a wiki to share information about their research projects about three years ago. Most researchers are on contract and are far-flung, working at home approximately ...

  16. Case Study Houses

    The Case Study Houses were experiments in American residential architecture sponsored by Arts & Architecture magazine, which commissioned major architects of the day, including Richard Neutra, Raphael Soriano, Craig Ellwood, Charles and Ray Eames, Pierre Koenig, Eero Saarinen, A. Quincy Jones, Edward Killingsworth, and Ralph Rapson to design and build inexpensive and efficient model homes for ...

  17. OER Case Studies

    NPTEL is a large OER publishing project of India. It is operated by a network of federal academic and research institutions in India and is funded by the Ministry of HRD. NPTEL has published 770 full courses in English as of this year (each course contains lecture material equal to about 30 hours).

  18. Education/Case Studies

    Brochure in PDF format, collecting these case studies, published June 2012. (direct download) Since Wikipedia began in 2001, educators around the world have integrated the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit into their curriculum. In 2010, the Wikimedia Foundation started the Wikipedia Education Program to provide more support for educators ...

  19. Case study

    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 ...

  20. Case Histories (TV series)

    Case Histories is a British crime drama television series based on the Jackson Brodie novel series by Kate Atkinson.It stars Jason Isaacs, who has also narrated the abridged audiobook adaptation, as protagonist Jackson Brodie. The series is both set and filmed in Edinburgh. Initially each episode was aired in two 60 minute sections. The first series premiered on 5 June 2011, on BBC1 in the ...