Evaluate the use of case studies in research

What is a case study?

  • is characterized by method triangulation, i.e. a case study uses at least two different data collection methods, sometimes combining both quan and qual
  • generally case studies take an ideographic approach
  • case studies often allow the researcher to gain a rich and indepth insight into a unique phenomenon (or “case”)
  • Sometimes studying an abnormal case in order to learn more for example about the normal

Evaluating Case Studies



  • generalization from single case studies must be handle with extreme caution, but qualitative researchers often do not perceive that this even remotely the goal of their research and leave the reader to decide whether they wish to apply anything that they have learnt to their own setting (inferential generalisability based on the rich and thick data provided in the report to enable to the reader to draw comparisons between the setting of the study and their own experiential niche)