Definitions for case study
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word case study
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
(in the social sciences) an analytical study of the development of an individual unit, as a person, family, or social institution.
Ref: case history.
Origin of case study:
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
a detailed analysis of a person or group from a social or psychological or medical point of view
Research performed in detail on a single individual, group, incident or community, as opposed to, for instance, a sample of the whole population.
In the social sciences and life sciences, a case study is a descriptive or explanatory analysis of a person, group or event. An explanatory case study is used to explore causation in order to find underlying principles. Case studies may be prospective or retrospective. Thomas offers the following definition of case study: "Case studies are analyses of persons, events, decisions, periods, projects, policies, institutions, or other systems that are studied holistically by one or more methods. The case that is the subject of the inquiry will be an instance of a class of phenomena that provides an analytical frame — an object — within which the study is conducted and which the case illuminates and explicates." Another suggestion is that case study should be defined as a research strategy, an empirical inquiry that investigates a phenomenon within its real-life context. Case study research can mean single and multiple case studies, can include quantitative evidence, relies on multiple sources of evidence, and benefits from the prior development of theoretical propositions. Case studies should not be confused with qualitative research and they can be based on any mix of quantitative and qualitative evidence. Single-subject research provides the statistical framework for making inferences from quantitative case-study data. This is also supported and well-formulated in: "The case study is a research approach, situated between concrete data taking techniques and methodologic paradigms."
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