With the increase in online marketing, one will conduct “a case study” at least once before deciding the best product or vendor to use. In other words, a case study is a research method mostly applied in the life and social sciences to examine a smaller unit and later using the found results generalize on a larger unit. Roberta Heale and Alison Twycross define case study as an intensive research methodology about a unit, group of people, or persons to generalize over several other units (Twycross, 2018, p. 7). These units, as mentioned, could be a particular unit of products, a person, a group of people such as men, women, males, females, leaders, organization CEO, among others. Now that we understand what a case study is, what makes a problem suitable to use a case study?
There several characteristics of a problem that make it a perfect fit for using a case study. The problem affects a larger unit of the targeted company. For example, an issue affecting college students in the United States is most likely involving students in Europe and Asia. Another characteristic is that the problem is a specific phenomenon arising from a particular entity (Gerring, 2004, p. 342). The problem or research question should present several forms in which they can be answered. In other words, it has multiple variables, which can be used to find the solution (LANE, 2018, p. 1504). Lastly, the problem presents multiple dimensions or cases to consider. For instance, using the given an example above, the research could instead focus on course complexity affects college students’ performance.
Consulting is the act of providing external advice to a person, a group, an organization, or institution or a range of topics such as operations, management, strategy, technology to help the advised party make a better and more profound decision based on the problem at hand (DropOutClub LLC, 2016). The first characteristic is that the existing problem has existed before, or at least there has been an attempt to address the issue. The problem presents sufficient scientific merit to answer (LANE, 2018, p. 1504). For instance, for most Startup companies, capital is a major issue often requiring consultation. In other words, there is a known solution to the problem. Secondly, the question presents conflicting issues, and the whole purpose of the consultation is to decide on the best course of action (Keller & Alsdorf, 2012).
Thus, for instance, a company wanting to purchase a new machine may consult with a financial expert to help in making the decision. In this case, the problem could be production and thus, acquiring the new machine will increase production on the one hand and is also likely to incur additional operation costs on the other hand.
DropOutClub LLC. (2016). Consulting 101. Retrieved from
Gerring, J. (2004). What is a Case Study and What is it Good for? American Political Science Review, 98(2), 341-354. Retrieved from 10.1017/S0003055404001182
Keller, T., & Alsdorf, K. L. (2012). Every good endeavor: connecting your work to God’s work. Every good endeavor: connecting your work to God’s work: Dutton.
LANE, S. (2018). The best evidence comes from the right study design, not just randomised trials. BJOG : an International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 125(12), 1504. Retrieved from
Twycross, R. H. (2018). What is a case study? Evidence-Based Nursing, 7-8.
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