How To Write a Case Study

By: Angelina Grin

150 min



How To Write a Case Study

You remember popular movies about colleges will have all these parties and adventures. It is easy to believe that this period is careless and full of joy. However, it is full of study assignments that are intended to develop your skills and broaden your knowledge in real life.

Most of these tasks are important, they help you to become a good professional and to start a bright career. But though you’re full of energy and ambitions, you don’t have to pretend you’re a superhero. Some study projects can be challenging, and it is normal if you ask for case study help. You can discuss the home task with your fellow students (two heads are always better than one), but it would be more efficient to rely on professionals.

So, if you don’t know how to write a case study assignment and deserve some brownie points with your professor, we are ready to provide you with some actionable tips. Use them to come up with an amazing paper, and remember that there is someone who has your back!

What Is a Case Study?

Regardless of the specific assignment, it would help if you always started with the basics. Read your professor’s requirements, attentively to understand his or her expectations. You can write an amazing paper, but it doesn’t matter if you haven’t considered some instructions.

So, what is the case study definition?

A case study is a paper that studies a specific subject: it can be a person, a company, an event, and so on. Speaking about educational assignments, it is usually related to some business cases. This task is common for students pursuing degrees in marketing, management, economics, accounting, and other business disciplines.

Case studies help to understand how real life works beyond the textbooks. What challenges do companies face and what you can do to overcome them? The main point is that most books are outdated, and life is full of unpredictability. Such assignments as case studies teach students to stay flexible and optimistic.

What Is The Purpose Of a Case Study?

Now, when you know what a case study is, it is time to understand your task's purposes. The fact is that you may face similar assignments during your educational process, but all of them will have different goals.

For example, your professor may ask you to write a paper to describe the case as it is. It requires you to conduct research, find enough information, and process it to develop structured content.

Or your professor may ask you to focus on the specific challenge you’ve already discussed in the class. You’ll need to find out its causes and consequences and to provide your insights on this topic.

One more option is to write a case study analysis that includes more thorough research and your evaluation and opinion. Having your knowledge and experience, you should come up with new ideas and suggestions for this case.

That’s why it is important to understand instructions: you need to follow them to get a good grade.

How To Define a Candidate For Your Case Study?

Sometimes professors may assign you a specific topic to write about. It makes things easier since you don’t have to puzzle over ideas to start with. But there are a lot of students who like it when they have options. There may be a situation when you need to come up with a topic yourself, and it is pretty interesting and challenging at the same time.

You need to find a company or a person with a business case related to your assignment. It is the defining moment even before you start working on the paper. Your writing is secondary. If you choose a poor case that is not full of insights, even the most creative paper won’t impress your readers. That’s why the process of defining a candidate for your project is an essential part.

We can offer you three ideas to develop an exciting topic that will make your project rock.

Field Knowledge

First of all, think about companies or people who have experience in the field you’re interested in. For example, if you study FMCG business, it would be great to check the leaders' list in this niche. It doesn’t have to be an enterprise with thousands of employers, you can choose a small start-up. The main point is that the people that you will consult with have the necessary knowledge and experience.

Try to read some specialized magazines, check the sites with the industry’s news. The deeper you delve, the easier it will be for you to develop a good topic.

Incredible Results

The second option is to think about companies that made the grade and therefore are subjects of interest. The definition of “results” may vary since it is not necessarily going about incomes. You can choose the candidate that has launched an amazing marketing campaign recently. Or someone completely unknown before some events. It would also be a great idea to write about the company that overcame a challenge that other companies in this field could not face.

If you want to grab the readers’ attention, rely on the contrast: a huge difference between point A and point Z.

The main idea here is that you should write about specific results that are measurable and undeniable. Make sure you can provide some numbers and facts so that no one can question your case study.

Big Names

One more good strategy is to choose the name that is famous enough. People are always interested in popular companies and individuals, and you have all the chances to attract their attention. Besides, with such a topic, you can easily find the necessary information for your project. However, it doesn’t mean that you wouldn’t face some challenges.

Firstly, it is not so easy to write a unique paper with some powerful insights. Everybody is writing about famous names, and you need to be able to delve deeper. Your readers are also expecting too much from your writing, so you can’t just come with average content, you need to do something worthwhile.

One More Case Study Challenge To Overcome

The interesting thing is that most case studies are not just about gathering information and presenting it in the written form. It will help if you put yourself in the company's shoes or a person you’re writing about.

Students find background information, original conditions, limitations, and need to develop their solution to develop the one based on the knowledge and experience they already have.

Such an assignment can be compared not with the essay or any other creative writing. It is instead a math problem when you have some data, and you need to process it, looking for a solution. The ways you will present it can also be different, depending on your professor’s requirements.

Sometimes you need to deliver a strict document, and sometimes you can prepare a video presentation.

As you can understand, there are various types and formats of the case study. That’s why the prewriting stage is very important: you need to know for sure what your professor expects of you.

6 Steps You Should Take to Write an Incredible Case Study And Impress Everyone

Once you have decided on your topic, don’t forget about it until the deadline. It would be better to divide the whole project into several milestones and work on them. What if we say that you need only 6 steps to write a case study? Some of them may seem difficult to you, but there is no place for development without challenges. Having a plan in front of you will help you focus on your goals and continue this journey.

Conduct the Research

Always start with the research and try to gather as much information as you can about the case. It will save you from the situation when you’re sitting in front of your laptop without understanding what to write about.

Use reliable sources only and try different formats: journal articles, interviews, videos, presentations. Even the official Twitter of the specific company may come in handy. If you have an opportunity to schedule a meeting with someone who can tell you more about the case, don’t miss it.

Finally, when you have all the data in hand, analyze it, and determine the most important facts for your case study topic. It will be useful to develop the outline so that you have a plan to follow.

Describe the Situation

Your readers need to have a clear understanding of the story you’re going to tell. Even if it goes about a famous situation, you have to start with a short description of all previous events and a problem statement. Trying to hook the attention, begin by adding quotes from someone well-aware of all circumstances. You can also choose some quotes from the press, to show how hot your topic is. It would also be a great idea to start with a couple of questions like “Could anyone have imagined that?”

The introduction section sets the tone for the audience to remember or learn some facts of the case study you’re writing about. This also can set the expectation that you will be providing information your readers can use to find out more. Finally, the paragraph with a description of the situation is useful to ensure you’re on the same page with your readers and have the same understanding of the problem.

Provide Background

Now, when your readers know what your case study is about and the main problem you’re writing about, it is time to share more information. Start with the background the causes of the problem, its prerequisites.

This section should consist of trustworthy information from authoritative sources: facts and figures. It is where you can add some visuals like photos or graphs, quotes from articles and interviews, and so on. Depending on your case study format, you can also include video or audio files so that your audience gets a full understanding of the background.

Writing the background paragraphs, you should give readers information that they need to come to their conclusions. In the next sections, you’ll provide them with your insights and solutions, but it is important to ensure the audience is ready to understand them.

Describe the Solution

Once you’ve ensured that your readers have the necessary information, you can proceed to the solutions. Tell the story from the very beginning: what were the first ideas? Why were they declined? Then describe the winning one and the person (or the group of people) who came up with it.

Depending on your assignment instructions, this section may include your own opinion. It is not about facts but subjective thinking. Do you think this solution was the best one and whywhy not? What ideas do you personally have, taking into account your knowledge?

Pay attention to the limitations the company had. For example, if it goes about the case of the 1950s, you can’t provide a solution related to modern technology. However, you can give credits to stakeholders' creativity: they were required to work in pretty other circumstances. Besides, don’t forget to mention the goal of the solution. While the company tried to slow the problem down, you may suggest eliminating it, and so on.

Evaluate the Consequences

Your case study is almost finished, and you need to wrap up. So, it is time to draw some conclusions and tell the readers whether the accepted solution was the right choice. Write about the events the company had to face after these changes and their short-term and long-term consequences. What insights can you and other professionals in your field take from the whole situation?

If the choice was a mistake, you could describe it in detail. Why do you think it didn’t work? Were there some circumstances that were impossible to predict? Who is responsible for the situation? You can also describe the status-quo briefly to satisfy the interest of your audience.

Proofread the Document

Proofreading is the last part of the writing process that needs you to be attentive and concentrated. If you still have time before the deadline, wait about a couple of days after finishing the last paragraph of writing. If your time is running out, the pause can be shorter, but you need it to refresh the brain.

Read your article with a keen eye, detecting some errors and typos, especially in titles, figures, and names. Pay attention to the facts you’ve provided: are they correct? It would be better to ask someone to proofread the content so that you can know it is flawless. Check your professor’s requirements one more time and make some edits if necessary.

Some Additional Aspects You Should Pay Attention To

Writing a case study for the first time is not easy to come up with a decent paper. You have the temptation to skip this assignment or to copy and rewrite someone else’s project. Both these solutions are grave mistakes, so try to avoid them.

If you understand that you lack time, energy, and even wish to work on this project, it would be better to hire a professional author with the appropriate expertise to help you with the assignment. Or you can devote some time and master your writing skills. Below you’ll find some additional ideas on how to make your case studies just amazing.

Case Studies Samples

 ☑️ Case Study Samples

As personal statement examples can be useful when dealing with this type of paper, a good case study sample will come in handy now. Of course, we don’t ask you to paraphrase or rewrite it, but it can be a great source of inspiration. Moreover, after you read some samples, you can understand what topics are covered well and what information they may lack. Write down all ideas that come to your mind during the reading to use them working on your project.

Case Study Formatting

If your professor requires you to follow MLA format, APA style, or any other guidelines, don’t underestimate these instructions. The chances are your paper will be published somewhere, and therefore it must meet some academic standards. Formatting is not the most creative part of writing, but it is the thing that makes your document look professional.

Anyway, even if you don’t have clear instructions on the format, it is necessary to ensure your paper is well-structured and clear.

Creative Writing

The chances are your case study is not the same assignment as the term paper or a dissertation. If you’re allowed to add some photos and other visuals, experiment with structure, organize interviews, etc., you should do it. Though it will make the writing process longer because of the whole research, it will make the process more interesting. Looking for information online, writing your essay is not the same thing as when you have the opportunity to ask questions to the CEO, CFO, CMO of the company with a famous story. So, don’t miss the opportunity to make your case study more creative, and therefore more useful.

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Angelina Grin

Creative Writer and Blog Editor

Despite my relatively young age, I am a professional writer with more than 14 years of experience. I studied journalism at the university, worked for media and digital agencies, and organized several events for ed-tech companies. Yet for the last 6 years, I've worked mainly in marketing. Here, at Studybay, my objective is to make sure all our texts are clear, informative, and engaging.

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