A case study is a research method that relies on a single case rather than a population or sample. When researchers focus on a single case, they can make detailed observations over a long period of time, something that cannot be done with large samples without costing a lot of money. Case studies are also useful in the early stages of research when the goal is to explore ideas, test, and perfect measurement instruments, and to prepare for a larger study. A case study is unique within the social sciences for its focus of study on a single entity, which can be a person, group or organization, event, action, or situation. Often, when researchers use the case study method, they focus on a case that is exceptional in some way because it is possible to learn a lot about social relationships and social forces when studying those things that deviate from norms.
Case Study In Research
Case Study Method in Psychology | Simply Psychology
The word qualitative implies an emphasis on the qualities of entities and on processes and meanings that are not experimentally examined or measured [if measured at all] in terms of quantity, amount, intensity, or frequency. Qualitative researchers stress the socially constructed nature of reality, the intimate relationship between the researcher and what is studied, and the situational constraints that shape inquiry. Such researchers emphasize the value-laden nature of inquiry. They seek answers to questions that stress how social experience is created and given meaning. In contrast, quantitative studies emphasize the measurement and analysis of causal relationships between variables, not processes.
How to do a case study
Qualitative research relies on data obtained by the researcher from first-hand observation, interviews, questionnaires, focus groups, participant-observation, recordings made in natural settings, documents, and artifacts. The data are generally nonnumerical. Qualitative methods include ethnography , grounded theory , discourse analysis , and interpretative phenomenological analysis.
The case study research design have evolved over the past few years as a useful tool for investigating trends and specific situations in many scientific disciplines. This method of study is especially useful for trying to test theoretical models by using them in real world situations. For example, if an anthropologist were to live amongst a remote tribe, whilst their observations might produce no quantitative data, they are still useful to science. Basically, a case study is an in depth study of a particular situation rather than a sweeping statistical survey. It is a method used to narrow down a very broad field of research into one easily researchable topic.