Wednesday, 02 May 2012 08:00

Case Study

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Case Study MP900315521 © 2012 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

The case study instructional strategy allows learners to apply analysis, knowledge, and problem-solving skills to real-life scenarios. Learners are provided with an actual problem or dilemma and must critically untangle the issue to arrive at a solution. This may be conducted individually or as a part of a group.


  • Learners are often engaged by real-life situations
  • Real-life examples can make it easier to understand abstract concepts
  • Allows theory and ideas to be applied practically

Instructor’s role:

  • Provide the case-study and necessary background information
  • Define process for analysis (e.g. in groups or individually)
  • Set time limits for analysis
  • Summarize findings
  • Define what action will be taken after findings are shared

Learner’s role:

  • Define the underlying issue(s) of the case
  • Outline the cases’ contributing factors
  • Discuss why the problem exists
  • Connect problem to class outcomes to determine what principles can be used to solve the issue.
  • Determine best possible solution


Pattison, P., & Day, R. (2006). Instruction Skills Workshop (ISW) Handbook for Participants. Vancouver: The Instructional Skills Workshop International Advisory Committee.

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Christie Robertson

I remember what it was like being a new instructor: too many questions and too many resources to sift through. My goal as a writer for Learning Connections is to help instructors with common teaching issues, whether they are f-2-f, blended or online. I want answers to those frequently asked question to be easy to find!