Properly Preparing Case StudiesSeomul Evans Evans
June 7, 2011 — 962 views
Case studies are often referred to as the study a situation, person or object in its natural habitat.
WHAT IS CASE STUDY?
Case study is the research of a specific problem, case or situation after weighing the pros and cons and while reviewing the information to help make the appropriate decision. Case studies are an essential part of MBA because it allows students to jump into the shoes of any given case study. It allows students to be able to understand the implications as well as the complications involved. They give students the opportunity to try their hand at trouble shooting. It could be said that case study is a simulation of a particular management situation that allows management students and graduates to react in real situations while helping them by pointing them into the right direction.
Technical students will encounter laboratory and theory activies. The faculty will first teach these theories in the class room. They will then be taken to the laboratory where they'll practice what they were taught in the class room. The students will have to take the theories that they have been taught and use them in the experiments conducted in the laboratory. This allows the faculty to close the gap between learning and doing. This allows students to understand and memorize activities and theories quicker. Fewer doubts are encountered when students get to do the practical experiments.
Case studies are very similar to laboratory activities. When it comes to management education, students can not be taken into the industry to practice each theoretical concept therefore case studies will come in handy for them. The process usually starts out with the management concepts being explained followed by the case studies of specific companies being explained. This allows students to become part of a simulate situations that allows them to easily and effectively understand the concepts.
IMPORTANCE OF CASE STUDIES:
It is a common fact that people love listening to stores. Case studies are stories. Teaching cannot be complete without this. Teaching for management graduates is no different.
Students will become interested in case studies. It is important for each class to have some try of case study which will make being taught more interesting and entertaining. Case studies allow students to step into the shoes of the main player and act like that individual.
There are specific institutions that specialize in case studies. These institutions have achieved prominence all around the world. The ICFAI has many case studies. They accept and adopt case studies from all around the world. Specialization is available for every discipline. IBSCDC which stands for Icfai Business School Case Development Centre was founded in 2003. the IBSCDC has created over two thousand world class case studies. These case studies have been used in over thirty different international textbooks on Management. The textbooks have sold more than thirty thousand copies to different schools and universities. This is the second largest creator of case studies in the world and the largest in Asia. Being led by Dr.Nagendra V Chowdary the company is sure to soon control the world in innovative case studies. The company focuses on great research while catering to quality case studies. The company created the 'Structure Assignment' which is a new tool.
ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS FOR CASE STUDY:
There are a number of things that are needed for preparing a case study including passion. The individual preparing the case study needs to be able to put himself into the case scenario in order to get a feel for the situation. The author of the case study needs to be a good writer. He should also have read books in the part for the particular discipline that is writing for. Let's say the writer is writing a case study for HR. The individual should have read books related to Human Resources in order to write the case study. It is wonderful if the writer has industrial experience in the discipline that they are going to be writing in. This will allow the individual to fully understand the situation.
The writer will need a lot of patience. The writer should also have the skills to analyze the problems and be able to understand the correlation of activities in any given situation. The individual writing the case study should have problem solving skills as well as decision making skills.
HOW TO PREPARE A CASE STUDY?
Case studies can be long or short. It is possible for a case study to be anywhere from two to thirty pages. There really is no specific rule here as to the length of the case study. You should read everything through and write down key points and concepts as well as important issues on another sheet of paper. You should look at the four W's. What is actually the problem? Where is the problem? When did the problem start? Look for 4 W's in the case such as what is the problem? Why did the problem occur? You can get a better understanding of the case by relating and correlating all of these factors together. You will also need to read between the lines. Make sure that you apply your common sense to the situation. Be sure to look for statistical data and observe it closely. You should examine the cause and effect relation that is displayed in the case study. Sometimes the causes can be hidden and you will need to discover them which can be difficult. You will need to get to the root of the problem in order to come up with possible solutions. Using the visualization technique can be very useful when trying to correlate things mentally. It is a good idea to reread the text a few times and repeat the process until you are satisfied.
You should create a number of possible solutions for each given problem. Then choose the best solution that suits the current position and adopt. You will need to use intuition in order to choose the best logical and appropriate decision. You shouldn't repeat what is already said in the case.
An academician with industrial experience is capable of providing better results when it comes to analysis and preparation than an academician with no industrial experience. Many academicians will look at their case using a theoretical perspective since they have no been exposed to the industry. These individuals have tested their skills using a lot of case studies. This often isn't enough to be effective though. An individual who has an industrial background will look at the case from a number of different perspectives. They could have been faced with the same exact scenario sometime in the past. That means that these individuals will be able to provide tailor made answers and solutions to each problem.
At the heart of the management curriculum lays case study. Being able to create case study is considered a skill and not a talent. A case study writer who has passion, good writing skills, an eye for detail, decision making skills, problem solving skills and the ability to think out of the box will be able to come up with the most memorable and best case studies.