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Format of case study

1. Front Page : Case study[Heading in capital bold letters], your name, class and section,
board roll no. and name of the school
2. Acknowledgement by the student
3. Certificate
 School logo
 This is to certify that _____________ [your name] of class XII – D [your class
and section] has completed this case study under my supervision and this case
study may be considered as a part of the practical exam of AISSCE 2015-16
conducted by CBSE.

Ms. Suman Doogar

[Department of psychology]
4. Index
S.No. Particular Remarks Signature
1. Introduction to Case
2. Tools and
techniques used
3. Objective of a case
4. Identification of
5. Family History
6. Medical History
7. Habits, interests and
8. Interview with the
9. Interview with
Significant Others
10. Maudsley`s
11. Sinha`s
Anxiety test
12. Self Concept
13. Adjustment
Inventory for School
14. Conclusion and
15. Bibliography

5. Introduction of case study

 Define Psychology, mental processes, experiences and behaviour [class XI book]
 Define Psychological test : Standardisation, objectivity, reliability and its types,
validity and norms [Class XI book]
 Define case study

A case study is an in-depth study of the individual in terms of his/her psychological attributes,
psychological history in the context of his/her psycho-social and physical environment. Case
studies are analyses of persons, events, decisions, periods, projects, policies, institutions, or other
systems that are studied holistically by one or more method. The case that is the subject of the
inquiry will be an instance of a class of phenomena that provides an analytical frame —
an object — within which the study is conducted and which the case illuminates and explicates.

Case studies are widely used by clinical psychologists, case analyses of the lives of great people
can also be highly illuminating for those willing to learn from their life experiences.

The case study method often involves simply observing what happens to, or reconstructing ‘the
case history’ of a single participant or group of individuals (such as a school class or a specific
social group), i.e. the idiographic approach. Case studies allow a researcher to investigate a topic
in far more detail than might be possible if they were trying to deal with a large number of
research participants (nomothetic approach) with the aim of ‘averaging’.

The case study is not itself a research method, but researchers select methods of data collection
and analysis that will generate material suitable for case studies such as qualitative
techniques (unstructured interviews, participant observation, diaries), personal notes (e.g. letters,
photographs, notes) or official document (e.g. case notes, clinical notes, appraisal reports).

The data collected can be analyzed using different theories (e.g. grounded theory, interpretative
phenomenological analysis, text interpretation (e.g. thematic coding) etc. All the approaches
mentioned here use preconceived categories in the analysis and they are ideographic in their
approach, i.e. they focus on the individual case without reference to a comparison group.

Case studies are widely used in psychology and amongst the best known were the ones carried
out by Sigmund Freud. He conducted very detailed investigations into the private lives of his
patients in an attempt to both understand and help them overcome their illnesses.
The main characteristics of the case study

1. A descriptive study

a. (I.e. the data collected constitute descriptions of psychological processes and events, and of the
contexts in which they occurred (qualitative data).

b. The main emphasis is always on the construction of verbal descriptions of behaviour or

experience but quantitative data may be collected.

c. High levels of detail are provided.

2. Narrowly focused.

a. Typically a case study offers a description of only a single individual, and sometimes about

b. Often the case study focuses on a limited aspect of a person, such as their psychopathological

3. Combines objective and subjective data

a. i.e. the researcher may combine objective and subjective data: All are regarded as valid data
for analysis, and as a basis for inferences within the case study.

i. The objective description of behaviour and its context

ii. Details of the subjective aspect, such as feelings, beliefs, impressions or interpretations. In
fact, a case study is uniquely able to offer a means of achieving an in-depth understanding of the
behaviour and experience of a single individual.

4. Process-oriented.

a. The case study method enables the researcher to explore and describe the nature of processes,
which occur over time.
b. In contrast to the experimental method, which basically provides a stilled ‘snapshot’ of
processes, which may be continuing over time like for example the development of language in
children over time.

Strengths of Case Studies

 Provides detailed (rich qualitative) information.

 Provides insight for further research.
 Permitting investigation of otherwise impractical (or unethical) situations.
Case studies give psychological researchers the possibility to investigate cases, which could not
possibly be engineered in research laboratories. For example, the Money Case Study.

Case studies are often used in exploratory research. They can help us generate new ideas (that
might be tested by other methods). They are an important way of illustrating theories and can
help show how different aspects of a person's life are related to each other. The method is
therefore important for psychologists who adopt a holistic point of view (i.e. humanistic

Limitations of Case Studies

 Can’t generalize the results to the wider population.

 Researchers own subjective feeling may influence the case study (researcher bias).
 Difficult to replicate.
 Time consuming.
Because a case study deals with only one person/event/group we can never be sure whether
conclusions drawn from this particular case apply elsewhere. The results of the study are not
generalizable because we can never know whether the case we have investigated is
representative of the wider body of "similar" instances

Because they are based on the analysis of qualitative (i.e. descriptive) data a lot depends on the
interpretation the psychologist places on the information she has acquired. This means that there
is a lot of scope for observer bias and it could be that the subjective opinions of the psychologist
intrude in the assessment of what the data means.

Types of case study

On the basis of number of individuals:

 Person/individual: The study of one single individual, generally using several different
research methods. Since there is only one individual, it emphasizes analysis in depth.
Such individual case study is a time honoured procedure in the field of medicine and
medical researchers.
 Group/Community: The study of a single distinctive set of people, such as a family or
small group of friends. Such a case study is a thorough observation and analysis of a
group of people who are living together in a particular geographical territory. It tries to
deal with various elements of the community life such as economic activity, climatic and
natural resources, historical development, social life values, health and education etc.

On the basis of purpose:

 Deviant Case analysis: The researchers starts with difference already found between
two people or groups and his/her task is to read backwards, to deduce the condition
that might have produced the differences.
 Isolated Clinical Case Analysis: Related to individual units with respect to some
analytical problems, such studies have become popular in psychoanalysis.

Methods used in Case study

 Observation of behaviour, characteristics and social qualities of the unit by the

 Use of questionnaires, opinions, inventories, checklists and other psychological tests
 Analysis of recorded data from schools, clinics, courts, newspapers and similar
 Interviewing the subject`s friends, relatives and significant others.

 Participant observation: Involves the researcher actually serving as a participant in

events and observing the actions and outcomes.

6. Tools and techniques used

 Observation : define, types, advantages and disadvantages
 Experimental method : define [also write about variables with independent and dependent
variables], advantages and disadvantages
 Psychological Testing : define, advantages and disadvantages
 Survey : define, advantages and disadvantages
 Case study : define, advantages and disadvantages
 Correlation : define, advantages and disadvantages

S.No. Method Define Advantages Disadvantages

1. Observation
2. Experimental
3. Psychological
4. Survey
5. Case study
6. Correlation

7. Objective of a case study

The case study is a research method involving an up-close, in-depth, and detailed examination of
a subject of study, as well as its related contextual conditions. It involves assessment of
individual`s psychological, physical, social, and emotional dimensions with the help of specific
psychological tools and techniques.

8. Identification of Data [Picture of the subject]

 Biographical data
 Name
 Age
 Date of birth
 Place of birth
 Gender
 Height
 Weight
 Religion
 Caste
 Educational Qualification
 Institute associated with
 Place of education
 Personal History [Paragraph about the subject`s general life, talk about
school/college life, what she/he wants to do in future, any particular change in life,
attitude about life, schooling, friends etc.]

9. Family History
 Family Tree
 Family arrangement: Joint family/ nuclear family with its advantages and
 Family details
 Name of the father:
 Age:
 Qualification:
 Occupation:
 Designation:

 Name of the mother:

 Age:
 Qualification:
 Occupation:
 Designation:

 Interview with the Father

How are you feeling at this moment?

How much time do you spend in interacting with your child?
What are the things that you want to improve in your child?
What are the things that you like about your child?
Does he/she have frequent change in behaviour or mood swings?
Does she share her/his problems and opinions with you?
What are the changes you have seen in her/his attitude recently?
Are you proud of your child?

 Subject`s relation with his/her father [your observation]

 Interview with the Mother

How are you feeling at this moment?

How much time do you spend in interacting with your child?
How is her/his behaviour at home?
What are the things that you like about your child?
Does he/she have frequent change in behaviour or mood swings?
What do you think about your child`s group of friends?
What are the changes you have seen in her/his attitude recently?
Are you proud of your child?

 Subject`s relation with his/her mother [your observation]

 Interview with Sibling

How are you feeling at this moment?
How much time do you spend in interacting with your brother/sister?
Do you stay in the same room? Are you comfortable with this arrangement?
What are the things that you like about your brother/sister?
Does he/she have frequent change in behaviour or mood swings?
Do you hangout with your brother`s/sister`s friends?
What are the changes you have seen in her/his attitude recently?

 Subject`s relation with his/her sibling [your observation]

10. Medical History





11. Habits, interests and talents [One Page]

12. Interview with the subject

How are you feeling at this moment?

Tell me about yourself.
What do your friends say about you?
What are your strengths?
What are your areas of improvement?
What do you like about yourself
Do you share all your problems with your friends?
Do you agree upon the beliefs of your family members?
What motivates you?

Summary of the interview: [your observation and conclusion of the interview]

13. Interview with Significant others: [One friend and one teacher]

How are you feeling at this moment?

How much time do you spend in interacting with your friend/student/relative?
What are his/her areas of improvement?
What are the things that you like about him/her?
Does he/she have frequent change in behaviour or mood swings?
Do you think he/she is an aggressive person?
14. Projective tests
 Picture Interpretation

[For Female subjects]

[For Male subjects]

 Sentence Completion Test
15. Psychological Tests conducted on the subject [Front Page Heading]
 Maudsley`s Personality Inventory
 Sinha`s Comprehensive Anxiety test
 Self Concept Questionnaire
 Adjustment Inventory for School Students

Note: Just write the score and result of the test

For e.g.

[My subject scored a total of 50 in Sinha`s Comprehensive Anxiety test, her scores relates to 99
percentile on the scoring table of the SCAT scoring manual. This indicates an extremely high level of
anxiety which leads to development of emotional and even physical consequential issues like feelings
of disturbance and lack of attention in situations of stress. The subject is unable to deal with highly
stressful situations with a calm attitude and ends up in high anxiety and physically fatigued.]

16. Conclusion and suggestions [atleast two pages]

For e.g.

I conducted my Case profile on _____________________ [Name] aged _________ years from

_______________[School/College Name]. It was a wonderful experience and taught me a great
deal in terms of knowing the subject and applying the techniques of assessment learned in
psychology class. I conducted the following tests on him/her:

 Maudsley`s Personality Inventory

 Sinha`s Comprehensive Anxiety test
 Self Concept Questionnaire
 Adjustment Inventory for School Students

Assessment was done on the basis of behavioral observation, psychometric testing based on self
report, interview with the subject and significant others from his/her life and two projective tests.

My subject score _____________ in MPI which indicates __________________. [interpretation

with test score]

My subject score _____________ in SCAT which indicates _________________. [interpretation

with test score]

My subject score _____________ in AISS which indicates __________________. [interpretation

with test score]

My subject score _____________ in SCQ which indicates __________________. [interpretation

with test score]
Also write about the behavioral observation that you have done through interview with the
subject and significant others.

If there is discrepancy in test scores and your observation, then write it and the reasons. Suggest
strategies if the subject has high anxiety or emotionally unstable.

17. Bibliography
 NCERT Class XII Psychology Book
 NCERT Class XI Psychology book
 Psychology Test manuals
 General Psychology by Dr. D.N.Srivastava