Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Join Now
Global Business School Network Blog
Blog Home All Blogs
Search all posts for:   


View all (442) posts »

5 Tips for Teaching Cases

Posted By Page Schindler Buchanan, Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Updated: Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Imane El GhazaliRihab AbbaThis post is part of GBSN's Case Method Month efforts to bring you expertise and perspectives from around the globe.

The case method allows understanding the complexity of an organization starting from real situations. Students sharpen their judgment skills, develop their analyzing and synthesizing abilities and react to recommend solutions to the presented issues. The knowledge thus acquired arises from "the lived experience”. But, to reach this goal, case teaching must rely on suitable method and technique. Here are some basic rules for a successful case teaching practice:

1.  Set the learning outcomes: case teaching gets all its meaning when the learning outcomes are clearly defined and announced to the students at the beginning of the session and reminded at its end. Indeed, during several case study sessions, because of a lack of clear outcomes, the participants try to solve the case according to their personal interest fields, current events or wrong concepts. Besides, some case teachers can sometimes be overtaken by the debate they are supposed to organize and frame.

2.  Select the case carefully: The best choice that could be made is that of a case which has been well-studied and well-prepared for a good use with the right group in the right context. Would it be an analysis case or an application case? A case with a decision to make, or one with a made decision that needs to be discussed? A centered case (one set of problems) or a transverse case? Mind not to choose a transverse case if you don’t master the different notions highlighted by the situation. The case teacher would then be trapped and compelled to deal with the case from a partial angle! Selecting the case of an organization with unknown data and context is another bad idea.

3.  Remain open to new ideas and don’t lead students to predetermined solutions: The case teacher must avoid pushing participants to a predefined conclusion, the one supposed to be the only and best solution, the famous "Best Way”! The first rule in the case method is to have various possible solutions. The case teacher must give free rein to suggestions, so as the plenary debate could lead to an optimum and agreed-upon solution.

4.  Shed light on concepts: Before concluding, the case teacher must bring to perspective the methodological and theoretical teachings of the debate. The point, for the students, is to memorize given concepts and how these concepts become operational, instead of memorizing factual items or data related to the case.

5.  Manage time effectively: A case study needs time. In order to meet the educational objectives with efficiency, the case teacher must take this feature seriously. Manage the reading time, the debate time and, above all, the conceptual and methodological explanations time. The Case teacher also bears the responsibility of scheduling the necessary time for a good use of the case. Sometimes, for a lack of time, some basic aspects happen to be worked superficially, or even omitted! At this level, it’s obvious that the importance allowed to a given aspect depends on the predefined learning outcomes.

Professor Rihab Abba is Professor of Communication and Imane Elghazali (pictured above) is Professor of Economics at ESCA School of Management.

Tags:  Case Method  case studies 

Share |
Permalink | Comments (0)
more Upcoming Events

9/26/2016 » 9/30/2016
AABS Teaching the Practice of Management Workshop

9/28/2016 » 9/30/2016
24th CEEMAN Annual Conference

9/28/2016 » 9/29/2016
SEED Africa Symposium 2016

10/5/2016 » 10/7/2016
1st Global Entrepreneurship Development (GEDC) Conference

Membership Management Software Powered by®  ::  Legal