A case study is an in-depth examination of a single person, organization, or event. While case studies are focused on a single person or group, they follow a similar pattern to other genres of psychological writing. They usually begin with a brief background section that introduces the reader to the topic at hand. Then follows a detailed analysis of the subject's traits, behaviors, feelings, interactions with others, and so forth. The conclusion offers a summary of what was learned from the case study.
Case studies can be written about individuals (e.g., "John Doe: A Case Study in Hysteria") or groups (e.g., "The Women's Movement: A Case Study in Gender Roles").
There are two main types of case studies: descriptive and analytical. Descriptive case studies simply describe a situation and how it affected one or more subjects. There is no specific hypothesis to be tested; rather, the researcher simply reports what he/she found when studying the subject. Analytical case studies, on the other hand, use statistical methods to test a specific hypothesis derived from the initial findings of the descriptive study. The goal of this type of research project is to determine whether there is evidence that supports the assumption that the phenomenon under investigation exists. If so, then the researcher will need to conduct another study which tests this new hypothesis.
A case study is a qualitative research method in which researchers focus on a bounded system as a unit of study. Definitions for Case Studies A case study is a decision of what to research rather than a methodological choice. (Stake) A study of a phenomena that happens in a given situation. (Denzin) The investigation of a problem or issue that extends over several cases or events. (Etzioni) The detailed analysis of a particular instance or example.
Case studies are useful tools for exploring issues in depth because they allow for the examination of many different aspects of a single topic. By studying multiple cases you can see how and why one thing leads to another, you can learn about factors beyond your control, and you can understand how certain events unfolded.
The goal of case study research is not to generalize about the subject but to describe the studied event or phenomenon in such a way that it can be used by others. Case studies usually involve a large amount of first-hand data collection from people who have knowledge of the topic under investigation. This primary source material is then analyzed by the researcher to identify themes that apply to a larger group of cases. The resulting description or model is then applied to other cases where necessary.
Case study research is commonly employed in social science disciplines to explore topics such as religion, education, economics, politics, and psychology.
A case study is described as 'an thorough examination of a person, a group of persons, or a unit with the goal of generalizing across numerous units.' 1 A case study is also defined as an extensive, systematic analysis of a single individual, group, community, or other entity that the researcher investigates in depth. The case study method was developed by C.R. Snyder and M.F. Greenberg in the late 1950s.
Case studies are useful tools for understanding social issues because they allow researchers to explore how specific situations affect one individual. By studying just one case, researchers can learn much about what causes someone to act in certain ways, as well as how different factors may have contributed to their behavior. Case studies are particularly useful for exploring topics such as motivation, personality, relationships, groups dynamics, and systems because each case allows researchers to examine these concepts from multiple perspectives.
In addition to being effective tools for exploring social issues, case studies are also valuable for training students in important research methods. During the course of a typical case study, researchers must make many decisions regarding data collection and analysis. Students can learn how to plan and conduct case studies by helping with these tasks on actual research projects. In addition, teaching students how to analyze data from case studies helps them develop critical thinking skills that are essential for academic success.
Case studies are commonly used in educational settings to help students understand various topics within the field of psychology.
In psychology, a case study is the use of a descriptive research method to get an in-depth understanding of a person, group, or phenomena. Personal interviews, direct observation, psychometric testing, and historical data are some of the tools that may be used. The goal is to provide a detailed picture of a particular individual, family, or group for which no adequate research material exists.
Case studies help psychologists better understand what causes someone to act or think as they do by looking at one particular situation or series of events. Case studies can also help identify patterns within groups of people who have similar problems. Finally, case studies can help psychologists make generalizations about how people differ from one another to explain why some people function well in certain situations but not others.
Psychologists use information gathered from case studies to make predictions about what might happen in future situations involving the same individuals or groups.
Like any other type of research design, case studies must be chosen carefully to ensure that a sufficient amount of relevant information is obtained while minimizing the risk of bias. Case studies can be useful tools for gaining insight into how people's minds work because they allow psychologists to look at one specific situation and make generalizations about other situations where more information is not available.