The case study confirms the There is no greater bias in
researcher's preconceived case study toward confirming
notions. preconceived notions than in
other forms of research.
The case study is most useful The case study is useful for
in the first phase of a research both generating and testing of
process; used for generating hypotheses but is not limited to
hypotheses. these activities.
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The investigator is left to rely on his or her own instincts and abilities throughout most of this research effort.
A concern about case study research--and in particular case evaluation--is what Guba and Lincoln (1981) refer to as "unusual problems of ethics.
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Kibben, C. (2013). Humor and emotional intelligence: A correlational study of leadership. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences, 74(5-A(E)).
Leigh, C. (2013). Examining the relationship between emotional intelligence and leadership styles of U.S. Navy senior enlisted leaders. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences, 74(1-A(E)).
One can't generalize from Formal generalization is
a single case so a single case overvalued as a source of
doesn't add to scientific scientific development; the
development. force of a single example is underestimated
He also argues that formal generalizations based on large samples are overrated in their contribution to scientific progress (for a discussion comparing sampling, representativeness, and generalizability in both quantitative and qualitative research, see Gobo, 2004).
TABLE 3.1. FIVE MISUNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT CASE STUDY RESEARCH.
The second misunderstanding, for example, "that one cannot generalize on the basis of a single case is usually considered to be devastating to the case study as a scientific method" (p.224).
These issues, which are discussed more fully in Chapter Nine, are the focus of much discussion in the literature on qualitative research generally.
In an interesting discussion of the value of case study research, Flyvbjerg (2006) sets up five "misunderstandings" about case study research, which he then dismantles, substituting a more accurate statement about the issue underlying each misunderstanding.
Zak-Abrantes, V. (2011). Enhancing student leaders' emotional intelligence through multi-dimensional executive coaching: A pragmatic case study approach. Psy.D. Rutgers The State University of New Jersey, Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology, United States -- New Jersey.
Thus, it is precisely because case study includes paradoxes and acknowledges that there are no simple answers, that it can and should qualify as the gold standard" (p.
In a recent presentation critiquing the new "gold standard" of randomized controlled trials in educational research, Shields (2007) argues for qualitative case studies: "The strength of qualitative approaches is that they account for and include difference--ideologically, epistemologically, methodologically--and most importantly, humanly.
23) observes, "the case study has basically been faulted for its lack of representativeness...and its lack of rigor in the collection, construction, and analysis of the empirical materials that give rise to this study.
Kaur, J. (2010). A mixed method case study: Bar-On EQ-i framework of emotional intelligence and the school leadership experiences of principals who completed an urban leadership program in northern California. Ed.D. University of San Francisco, United States -- California.