Another way to think about choosing a case to study is to consider how the results from investigating a particular case may result in findings that reveal ways in which to resolve an existing or emerging problem. For example, studying the case of an unforeseen incident, such as a fatal accident at a railroad crossing, can reveal hidden issues that could be applied to preventative measures that contribute to reducing the chance of accidents in the future.
In this example, a case study investigating the accident could lead to a better understanding of where to strategically locate additional signals at other railroad crossings in order to better warn drivers of an approaching train, particularly when visibility is hindered by heavy rain, fog, or at night.
Does the case offer a new direction in future research? A case study can be used as a tool for exploratory research that points to a need for further examination of the research problem. A case can be used when there are few studies that help predict an outcome or that establish a clear understanding about how best to proceed in addressing a problem.
For example, after conducting a thorough literature review [very important! A case study of how women contribute to saving water in a particular village can lay the foundation for understanding the need for more thorough research that documents how women in their roles as cooks and family caregivers think about water as a valuable resource within their community throughout rural regions of east Africa.
The case could also point to the need for scholars to apply feminist theories of work and family to the issue of water conservation. Eisenhardt, Kathleen M. Structure and Writing Style The purpose of a paper in the social sciences designed around a case study is to thoroughly investigate a subject of analysis in order to reveal a new understanding about the research problem and, in so doing, contributing new knowledge to what is already known from previous studies.
In applied social sciences disciplines [e. In general, the structure of a case study research paper is not all that different from a standard college-level research paper. However, there are subtle differences you should be aware of.
Here are the key elements to organizing and writing a case study research paper. Introduction As with any research paper, your introduction should serve as a roadmap for your readers to ascertain the scope and purpose of your study.
The introduction to a case study research paper, however, should not only describe the research problem and its significance, but you should also succinctly describe why the case is being used and how it relates to addressing the problem. The two elements should be linked. With this in mind, a good introduction answers these four questions: What was I studying?
Describe the research problem and describe the subject of analysis you have chosen to address the problem. Explain how they are linked and what elements of the case will help to expand knowledge and understanding about the problem. Why was this topic important to investigate? Describe the significance of the research problem and state why a case study design and the subject of analysis that the paper is designed around is appropriate in addressing the problem.
What did we know about this topic before I did this study? Provide background that helps lead the reader into the more in-depth literature review to follow.
If applicable, summarize prior case study research applied to the research problem and why it fails to adequately address the research problem.
Describe why your case will be useful. If no prior case studies have been used to address the research problem, explain why you have selected this subject of analysis. How will this study advance new knowledge or new ways of understanding? Explain why your case study will be suitable in helping to expand knowledge and understanding about the research problem. Each of these questions should be addressed in no more than a few paragraphs.
Exceptions to this can be when you are addressing a complex research problem or subject of analysis that requires more in-depth background information. Literature Review The literature review for a case study research paper is generally structured the same as it is for any college-level research paper. This includes synthesizing studies that help to: Place relevant works in the context of their contribution to understanding the case study being investigated. This would include summarizing studies that have used a similar subject of analysis to investigate the research problem.
If there is literature using the same or a very similar case to study, you need to explain why duplicating past research is important [e.
Describe the relationship each work has to the others under consideration that informs the reader why this case is applicable. Your literature review should include a description of any works that support using the case to study the research problem and the underlying research questions.
Identify new ways to interpret prior research using the case study. Prepared by University of Guelph About Case Study Reports This guide provides advice and resources to help you write case study reports during your post-secondary education. What Will I Learn? By successfully completing the sections included in this guide, you should be able to: identify the components of a case study report, develop a practical plan for completing a case study report, apply research, analysis, and writing strategies for each section of the report, evaluate the quality of a case study report, and present your case study in a clear, organized, and persuasive way.
The introduction is where we convey this to the reader. It is useful to begin by placing the study in a historical or social context. If similar cases have been reported previously, we describe them briefly. If there is something especially challenging about the diagnosis or management of the condition that we are describing, now is our chance to bring that out.
Each time we refer to a previous study, we cite the reference usually at the end of the sentence. Case presentation: This is the part of the paper in which we introduce the raw data. First, we describe the complaint that brought the patient to us. Next, we introduce the important information that we obtained from our history-taking. Also, we should try to present patient information in a narrative form — full sentences which efficiently summarize the results of our questioning.
We may or may not choose to include this list at the end of this section of the case presentation. The next step is to describe the results of our clinical examination. Again, we should write in an efficient narrative style, restricting ourselves to the relevant information. It is not necessary to include every detail in our clinical notes. If we are using a named orthopedic or neurological test, it is best to both name and describe the test since some people may know the test by a different name.
X-rays or other images are only helpful if they are clear enough to be easily reproduced and if they are accompanied by a legend. Be sure that any information that might identify a patient is removed before the image is submitted.
At this point, or at the beginning of the next section, we will want to present our working diagnosis or clinical impression of the patient. Management and Outcome: In this section, we should clearly describe the plan for care, as well as the care which was actually provided, and the outcome. It is useful for the reader to know how long the patient was under care and how many times they were treated.
Additionally, we should be as specific as possible in describing the treatment that we used. If we used spinal manipulation, it is best to name the technique, if a common name exists, and also to describe the manipulation.
Remember that our case study may be read by people who are not familiar with spinal manipulation, and, even within chiropractic circles, nomenclature for technique is not well standardized. However, whenever possible we should try to use a well-validated method of measuring their improvement.
For case studies, it may be possible to use data from visual analogue scales VAS for pain, or a journal of medication usage. It is useful to include in this section an indication of how and why treatment finished. Did we decide to terminate care, and if so, why? Did the patient withdraw from care or did we refer them to another practitioner? Formulate and include a thesis statement, summarizing the outcome of your analysis in 1—2 sentences.
Background Set the scene: background information, relevant facts, and the most important issues. Demonstrate that you have researched the problems in this case study.Footnote Introduction This report provides information obtained through ratio analysis, regarding the profitability, liquidity and financial stability of Outdoor Equipment Ltd for lilli stubeck essay writing years This report will pay particular attention to the earning power, liquidity and credit management, inventory management and debt management, and will highlight major strengths and weaknesses while offering some explanation for observed changes. These observations do have limitations which will be noted.
Review this page because it may help you identify a subject of analysis that can be investigated using a single case study design. You may discover that you need additional information as you analyze all data.
So, you need to think about how to sort through it, take out the excess, and arrange it so that the situation at the case site will be understandable to your readers. Your case could challenge this assumption by applying an innovative theoretical framework [perhaps borrowed from another discipline] to the study a case in order to explore whether this approach offers new ways of understanding the research problem. This could be via in-person group interviews and activities, personal interviews, or phone interviews. The author simply tries to summarize the paper into a story which flows logically.
Acknowledge the Study's Limitations You can state the study's limitations in the conclusion section of your paper but describing the limitations of your subject of analysis in the discussion section provides an opportunity to identify the limitations and explain why they are not significant. Your mind may have become oblivious to the errors it has seen times. Its marketing strategy will be assessed to see how it incorporates and has been influenced by both consumer and business buyers. Other contents for the title page should be as in the general JCCA instructions to authors. This tab focuses on the latter--how to design and organize a research paper in the social sciences that analyzes a specific case. With this in mind, a good introduction answers these four questions: What was I studying?
The case could also point to the need for scholars to apply feminist theories of work and family to the issue of water conservation. Corporations may choose illustrative case studies to show what has been done for a client; schools, educators and students may select cumulative or critical case studies and legal teams may demonstrate exploratory investigative case studies as a way to provide factual evidence. Demonstrate that you have researched the problems in this case study. It is also important to articulate why a particular place as the case for study is being used if similar places also exist [i.
The overarching purpose of reviewing pertinent literature in a case study paper is to demonstrate that you have thoroughly identified and synthesized prior studies in the context of explaining the relevance of the case in addressing the research problem. However, be careful when drawing conclusions from your case study. Cases often represent a topic that rests on the fringes of prior investigations because the case may provide new ways of understanding the research problem. It is best to simply tell the story and let the outcome speak for itself.
Step 3 — Make additions and deletions. Explain how your case study design may reveal new knowledge or a new perspective or that can redirect research in an important new direction. Highlight any findings that were unexpected or especially profound. Does the case provide important insight or illuminate a previously hidden problem?