Case Studies

Performing an in depth analysis on an instance of a place, person, group or phenomenon, in order to illustrate a thesis or principle.

Case studies represent an in-depth examination of a single situation and  are useful for small target populations and for collecting data in the natural environment.

And said in another way… “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.”

How to Learn

Associations and Journals

While not devoted solely to case studies, several of the American Sociological Association’s journals may include case studies. For instance, Contexts and  Contemporary Sociology.



Written by: Sarai Lucarelli and Janae Teal
Last updated: 1 January 2016

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