How to Create a Case Study: From Definition to the Tips for an Impactful Paper
A case study is a unique paper that may be needed at college, university, or even at work. It does not matter whether you are a student or an employee looking for new customers, this paper requires good analytical and writing skills as well as knowledge of various tricks. Continue reading to find everything you should know about it, from the basic info to the helpful case study tips.
What Is a Case Study?
It is defined as an intensive investigation of an event, person, situation, or phenomenon that helps to identify the main problems. What to include in a case study? You should do in-depth research of your topic, provide background information, indicate the key problems, and offer solutions.
How Long Is a Case Study?
The number of words varies from 500 to 1500 and depends on the paper's purpose. If you are a student, you can write a case study of up to 800 words. However, it is better to consult with your professor and clarify the expected size of your assignment. How long should a case study be if you need it for work? We recommend writing about 1500 words to engage potential customers.
How to Develop a Case Study: Prewriting Tips & Recommendations
Know the specification of your case study
The first step to a successful paper is to search for its features. The case study is used in different fields, for example, medicine, business, psychology, so the requirements may vary, and it is essential to know the peculiarities. Before you delve into the writing process, look through the guides, check the recommendations, and even go to YouTube, as it is full of useful videos with tips and successful cases.
If you strive to write a high-quality case study, then you should devote a good amount of time to this process and read as many articles as possible. For example, it is highly recommended to use charts in business case studies for data visualizations. As for the marketing, you may use a few quotes as it helps to build trust. So do not be lazy and go to google for the information.
Discover the case study best practices
In some way, this recommendation is related to the previous one. When you know the paper features, you can pick the best ways of presenting information to make your case study powerful and unique.
- Use the customer's name. Instead of writing "the client," provide a real name, or create a pseudonym. It will add your paper credibility and will give it an advantage over other ones. If you are looking for tips on how to write a case study on a person, then do not ignore this one. In your case, it is essential to make a paper sound personal.
- Describe emotions. Do not make your paper boring, and add some "colors" by describing emotions. For example, if you write about a product that improves customers' life, share their feelings when the problem is solved.
- Tell about the challenges. There is nothing bad about demonstrating weaknesses. Moreover, if you want to know how to present case study and show your problem-solving skills, then tell a reader how you overcame challenges.
We also recommend watching a 7-minute video explaining working case study practices and exposing myths.
Determine the focus for your paper
The effectiveness of your case study also depends on the focus. So before starting the research or even the writing process, just ask yourself, "What do I want to prove?" If you have an aim, then you will cope with paper better and faster, and even the next recommended steps will be easier for you. Nevertheless, be sure that you make a good choice that will bring success to you.
So if you are wondering how to write a case study for business, here are a few tips to determine the paper focus and choose the best subject for it:
- Examine your customer. Is he friendly enough? Will he give recommendations if necessary? Some people prefer to check the facts and seek confirmation.
- Make sure that you have impressive results. A good case study contains only solid numbers.
- Think about your audience, its interests, and needs. You should create a story that will have an emotional connection and resonate with the readers.
Always check case studies examples
How to make a case study of high quality? Check out the paper samples from professionals. It is impossible to write a good case study if you have no idea how it should look like. Even having read many guides, it can still be difficult for you to understand its special features. Hence, the best way to cope with the paper is to find some examples and follow them during the writing process.
There are plenty of websites, libraries, different sources where you can get good samples of case studies for different fields. Here are some of them that we would like to recommend:
- PubMed is a great platform for medical students that is full of paper samples on different topics. We recommend you checking out this fresh case study.
- If you are pondering how to write a business case study, then go to Sailthru. You will find there informative and well-designed papers, for example, check this one.
- We also like Optimazely, as this platform shares the case studies for different industries, such as travel, media, retail, and finance. One of the samples that are worth your attention you will find here.
Tips on Writing a Good Case Study
Start with an outline
Creating a plan is the best way to start the writing process, as it is quite hard to write a paper without organizing your thoughts after the research. If you do not want to spend a lot of time on it, then write at least the main headings with key ideas. But if you are ready to devote a good amount of time to outline, we recommend you indicate more information for the different paper sections. You can use the following structure: goal > the used tools > essential data > the transformation of data > the results/impact.
Catch the reader’s interest
It is crucial to spark the reader's interest and desire to delve into your case study and read it to the end. There are different ways to achieve it, such as using images, having a good title, and an impressive first paragraph. Don’t know how to start a case study? Firstly, you should define your paper's key points and then do your best to develop a solid thesis statement.
Be an interesting storyteller
This type of paper requires telling a story (background information) before providing the solutions. You should explain why the chosen problem occurred and what led to it. Make sure that your story includes all necessary parts (exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution) to be an interesting one and support it with some facts.
Combine the formats
A successful case study is not only about a well-structured text with headlines. You may have good writing skills, but not everyone enjoys perceiving information just following from one paragraph to another. Thus, we recommend using different formats of providing info, for example, infographics, charts, or even videos. By the way, a great business case study format is an interview with a customer. You may include just a few questions (about goals and needs) and customer's answers to them, but it will improve the paper quality greatly.
Impress with the numbers
Do not forget to provide some numbers and statistics to support your information using them as evidence. Moreover, it works great for a technical case study as it is impossible to create a good paper in this field without the numbers while explaining the problem, solution, and results.
Come up with good headings
How to build a case study and make it look well-structured? Create headings for it! Besides, if your paper is quite long, the titles will help a reader not get lost in the tons of the provided information. Nevertheless, avoid boring headlines and try to make them captative, for example, "Results" vs. "Results that speak volumes."
Now you know how to write a winning case study to bring you a high grade or new clients. So do not waste time and start working on your paper!