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Guidelines to the writing of case studies

General Instructions

❶Since this outline is for your use only, it does not necessarily have to be in the format of a list, like with most academic papers that you have to submit.

How should I approach it?

Introduction
How Is This Guide Organized?
2. Consider which theories and analysis tools may apply to the situation

Finally, the outline headings and subheadings can be converted into the contents page of your report. Prepare a schedule for writing and editing the sections of the report.

Allow some extra time just in case you find some sections difficult to write. Begin by writing the sections you feel most confident about. Preliminary sections executive summary, introduction and supplementary sections conclusions, reference list and appendices are usually prepared last.

Some writers like to begin with their conclusions where the writer's thoughts are at that moment or the methodology it's easier to write about your own work.

In writing a case study report in your course, the report is often intended for an imaginary person so you need to make sure that your language and style suites that person.

For example, a report for senior management will be different in content and style and language to a technical report. A report to a community group would also be different again in content, style and language.

Audience definition helps you decide what to include in the report based on what readers need to know to perform their jobs better or what the readers need to know to increase their knowledge about your subject. These notes on audience analysis are adapted from Huckin and Olsen p Writers rarely produce a perfect piece of text in their first attempt so a number of drafts are usually produced.

Careful planning and editing will ensure a consistent professional standard in the report. You will need to do the following:. Do this by keeping both the reader's needs and the report's objectives in mind as you gather information, take notes and write sections of the report.

Do this by taking clear notes, which include the information gathered and your thoughts about the usefulness and the implications of this information. Review your notes to decide what is essential information to include in the report.

Use your contents page outline to decide where information will go. Within each section, plan the subheadings and then decide on the sequence of information within these. Check that your writing flows and that your ideas are supported and plausible. If you are not sure what to look for, here are links to advice and activities on report organisation, cohesion and evidence.

Ensure that all your figures and tables communicate a clear message. Show a colleague your visuals to check how they will be interpreted or 'read'. For first drafts, a word processor's spell checker and grammar checker can be useful however, do not rely solely on these tools in your final edit as they are not perfect. Errors will be overlooked or even created by these programs! The best ways to edit are to read a printed copy and where possible get a colleague to read and give feedback.

Here is a report checklist that you can print out: The reference list is a list of all the sources you refer to in the report. If you do not reference sources of information, your assignment could be failed. As you read and take notes remember to collect the following information so that you can easily and quickly assemble your reference list. Further advice on the conventions for formatting reference lists and 'in text' references can be found at The Learning Centre's online resources.

Check your course requirements on the content and layout of the title page. As a general rule include the following:. At this stage it is best if you can leave the report for a day or so before conducting a final proof-read. This assists you to approach your report as a 'reader' rather than as the 'writer' so you will more easily see errors.

You should expect to spend a couple of hours on this task. Here are some editing activities for you to try! Skip to main content. Sign on Search Menu. Jobs and career portal. Specifically, the following will be included:. Skip to Case Study Report Navigation. Skip to Reflective Writing Navigaiton. Skip to Literature Review Navigaiton. Planning and Researching Section C: Parts of a Case Study Section D: Reviewing and Presenting Section E: Revising Your Work Section F: Critical Features Section D: Parts of a Lab Report Section E: Parts of a Literature Review Section D: Anything that can be understood in different ways is better to be discussed with your fellow students or even with your professor.

It is a good idea to take a large sheet of paper and draw mind maps to visualize your findings, ideas, and the connections between them. Answering the following questions should also help you to define your task:. Answers to these questions can be integrated into your mind map.

Alternatively, you can print this list of questions with large amounts of space left for answers and comments, and use it as a checklist.

All the necessary methodology can be found in your course notes and textbooks. You can also find books, articles and other resources with detailed descriptions of relevant analysis tools for case study both online and offline; many schools provide comprehensive guides for that. At the initial stage of analyzing the case, you should understand which problems and risks are bound with the case. For example, if you are analyzing a company, read its history to see what has led it to its success or failure and translate them to the companies' current activities and ongoing processes.

Pay attention to the points relevant to the questions provided by your professor who has assigned you this task. Remember to put all your findings onto your mind map — this includes both problems and the possible solutions; that is, both questions and answers to them.

Prioritize the problems and questions by marking them with different colors on your mind map. Remember to note the causes and effects of each problem, as well as all possible solutions that you think of or come across, even though at this stage they will be only preliminary. So, keep it in mind that you may discover more problems, as well as solutions, as you go on with writing your case study. Check out the available tools that you have at your disposal and see which ones can best be applied in your case.

To make the best choices, carefully read and brainstorm the possible applications of each tool and discuss it with your fellow students and your professor.

Remember to put down everything that you find out in notes. It is critical that you have everything documented, should you need to return to some point of your study. Also, write down what you think about those findings and how you have come to them. If you used calculations or testings for finding a possible solution to a problem, they also need to be thoroughly documented in detail.

This is your advice on what can be done to eliminate, solve, or at least minimize a problem in the case. There should be recommendations for each problem that you have found out. They can be shaped in the form of plain text or put in a table. They must be detailed and include not only the solution but also a plan of actions that need to be done to achieve positive results.

Each solution should answer the following questions:. Here you summarize your analysis of the case from the perspective of the objectives — both compulsory and desired ones. Remember to follow the recommendations from your professor regarding your conclusions to the letter, especially when it comes to your original assumptions.

Same as with any other academic writing , a case study report needs to be carefully planned before writing. The plan or the structure of your report will most probably start taking shape in your head as early as the beginning of your investigation. First, make up your preliminary outline with all the sections and subsections.

Since this outline is for your use only, it does not necessarily have to be in the format of a list, like with most academic papers that you have to submit. You can make it in any format that you find convenient — for example, a mind map.

Then, just sort your notes by adding them to the corresponding sections and subsections. Creating the outline will help you visualize the order in which you will put the bits of information that you have in your notes.

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Thus, our title should contain the phrase “case study,” “case report” or “case series” as is appropriate to the contents. The two most common formats of titles are nominal and compound. A nominal title is a single phrase, for example “A case study of hypertension which responded to spinal manipulation.”.

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In writing a case study report in your course, the report is often intended for an imaginary person so you need to make sure that your language and style suites that person. For example, a report for senior management will be different in content and style and language to a technical report.

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Guidelines for Writing a Case Study Analysis. A case study analysis requires you to investigate a business problem, examine the alternative solutions, and propose the most effective solution using supporting evidence. In these sections, you will find a Case Study Report Template, a Sample Paper, and the Structure of a Case Study. Each part of the guide will engage you in a variety of ways to help you develop greater confidence and skill writing case study reports.

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Report Writing Projects for $30 - $ Length: words Objectives: Case study Report writing The Executive Summary, Lists of Contents and References are not included in the required word length. Required The Challenges of My First Job a. A case study is one of the many kinds of written assignments that you have to face throughout your college years. It is your report about a person, a group of people, a .