Answered By: Mary Anne Erwin
Last Updated: Oct 19, 2022     Views: 4373

A case study provides you with a scenario in which to identify issues and apply your recent learning to a situation. It may simulate a real world problem, but the company may be ficticious. There are often no right or wrong answers. Rather, it is a chance to think critically in the context of your course to apply what you have learned to identify, analyze, and solve a problem. Following several steps will help you achieve the objectives of this assignment:   

1. Read the case carefully to identify important details.  Case studies may seem deceptively short, but they are dense with details about the organization, the issue, context, etc.

2. Identify the relevant details or issues and relate them to theories, processes, etc. that you have learned in class.  In some cases, you may be applying a single method to practice a new concept.  In others, such as final or capstone projects, you may be applying several theories and pulling together multiple ideas to address a fairly complex situation. 

3. When you begin writing the analysis, follow any instructions your professor has given. In general, a case analysis will include several key sections:

a. A brief overview of the problem and its context.

b. An analysis of the problem: What kind of problem is it? How does it apply to your class?  What decisions/circumstances have created the problem?  This analysis will be your interpretation but rooted in established research and theory, or the context of your class or major or program.

c. Recommendations and a plan of action—again these will be your own, but based on what you have learned.

d. Evaluation—how will you evaluate the success or failure of your solution once it is implemented?


You may find more about finding case studies, teaching with cases, and -- for students -- writing a case analysis on the Business Case Studies research guide.