case-study, case-study method
A research design that takes as its subject a single case or a few selected examples of a social entity-such as communities, social groups, employers, events, life-histories, families, work teams, roles, or relationships-and employs a variety of methods to study them. The criteria which inform the selection of the case or cases for a study are a crucial part of the research design and its theoretical rigour. Case-studies include descriptive reports on typical, illustrative, or deviant examples; descriptions of good practice in policy research; evaluations of policies after implementation in an organization; studies that focus on extreme or strategic cases; the rigorous test of a well-defined hypothesis through the use of carefully selected contrasting cases; and studies of natural experiments . The methods used to assemble information are determined in part by ease of access and whether the study is accepted by the subjects. Participant and non-participant observation , unstructured interviews with key informants, analysis of documentary evidence (including personal documents ) and information in administrative records, content analysis of key documents issued by the study subject, analysis of significant events occurring within the research period, and sample surveys have all been used to varying degrees in case-study research. There are no standard formats for reporting the methods used, the data collected, and the results from case-studies, but quantitative analysis is less common than in survey reports. See also case-history ; community studies.

Dictionary of sociology. 2013.

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  • case study — ➔ study1 * * * case study UK US noun [C] ► a detailed study of a person, group, or thing, especially in order to show general principles: »A case study by PriceWaterhouseCoopers assessed the annual fiscal impact of a US football team. ► something …   Financial and business terms

  • case study — case ,study noun count 1. ) a piece of research that records details of how a situation develops over a period of time: a case study of a tribal group in Borneo 2. ) a set of events that is a good example of a particular idea or situation: The… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • case-study — caseˈ study noun 1. A study based on the analysis of one or more cases or case histories 2. (the gathering and organizing of information for) a case history • • • Main Entry: ↑case …   Useful english dictionary

  • case study — case studies N COUNT A case study is a written account that gives detailed information about a person, group, or thing and their development over a period of time. ...a large case study of malaria in West African children …   English dictionary

  • case study — ► NOUN 1) a detailed study of the development of a particular person, group, or situation over a period of time. 2) a particular instance used to illustrate a thesis or principle …   English terms dictionary

  • case study — case .study n a detailed account of the development of a particular person, group, or situation that has been studied over a period of time …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Case study — This article is about the method of doing research. For the teaching method, see Case method. For the method of teaching law, see Casebook method. A case study is an intensive analysis of an individual unit (e.g., a person, group, or event)… …   Wikipedia

  • Case Study — Von Fallstudie wird in zweierlei Zusammenhängen gesprochen, einerseits im Rahmen der empirischen/qualitativen Sozialforschung, anderseits im Zusammenhang mit handlungs und entscheidungsorientiertem Unterricht. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Sozialforschung …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • case study — noun 1. a careful study of some social unit (as a corporation or division within a corporation) that attempts to determine what factors led to its success or failure • Topics: ↑corporation, ↑corp • Hypernyms: ↑report, ↑study, ↑written report 2. a …   Useful english dictionary

  • case study — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms case study : singular case study plural case studies 1) a piece of research that records details of how a situation develops over a period of time a case study of a tribal group in Borneo 2) a set of events… …   English dictionary

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