What are Cases?
Cases are factual or factually-based complex dilemmas written to stimulate classroom discussion and collaborative analysis.
Defining Characteristics of Cases:
No single correct answer - must have many defensible solutions
Background information and data are included - analysis of the problem is not
Topic or situation that is pertinent to students
Characters with whom students can identify
A driving force - often a decision forcing scenario
Multi-faceted problem - social, economic, political, ethical, environmental issues interwoven
Discipline principles are integral part of dilemma
A student-centered discussion is the main classroom activity. Students must collaborate to analyze the full dilemma and the data provided and decide upon a course of action.
of the Case Discussion Method:
Students define the nature of the dilemma as they perceive it, dividing the complex dilemma into manageable issues
Students bring their own background knowledge and principles to bear upon the case
Dynamic discussion - students raise points and questions,
and defend their positions
Students formulate strategies to analyze the data
and generate possible solutions
Collaboration and cooperation is key - competition
The instructor directs the student discussion but
is not an authoritarian
Students may not agree, sometimes a compromise is reached
What is a Case / Cases by Lantz and Walczak / Cases Home Page