Definition of case study along with its advantages and disadvantages
Case study is defined as “An event, an entity, an individual or even a unit of analysis” (Yin, 1989). A case study is also defined as an “Empirical inquiry that investigates a contemporary phenomenon within its real-life context using multiple sources of evidence” (Anderson, 1993). The case is also concerned on the reasoning of why and how the events happen so that the contextual realities could be captured and the variations in what was initially planned and what actually occurred could be perceived.
The case study is qualitative type of method; therefore, it has the same advantages as that of qualitative method. Case study can be either single or multiple cases. Single case is the analysis of one single phenomenon. According to Yin, Single cases are the most appropriate to confirm or challenge a theory or to represent a unique or extreme case.
Advantages of the case study:
- As we can observe the case directly and relate it to theoretical part, we can get the data directly from the case and analyse it.
- Results obtained through case study are more practical than ideal. As a researcher we observe and read the case directly: it is direct and simple method.
- It is a flexible method of doing research, because researcher is free to discover and address issues as they arrive in their experiments.
Limitations of case study:
It narrows down the area of research: the research is limited to an individual or group individuals the results inferred by research are not universal. So it is difficult to generalise the results.References
Anderson, G.J. (1993). Fundamentals of Educational Research. Falmer Press teachers’ library series. [Online]. Taylor & Francis Group. Available from: https://books.google.co.in/books?id=B5CGPwAACAAJ.
Yin, R.K. (1989). Case study research: Design and methods. Applied Social Research Series. [Online]. London: Sage. Available from: https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.461.5170&rep=rep1&type=pdf.