Investigating educational issues across Europe (ACROSS Base)
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Method Case study  (UNEMPLOYED)
Description "In the literature on qualitative research and especially on case study research, various types of case studies are distinguished, according to their scope and main function or focus. On the one hand a distinction can be made between case studies with a single-case design and case studies with a multiple case design. On the other hand a distinction can be made between exploratory, descriptive and explanatory case studies. Combining the two dimensions of scope (single or multiple) and function (exploratory, descriptive and explanatory), gives a 2x3 matrix, distinguishing six types of case studies. Which type might be the most appropriate, depends on the central research questions to be answered, the 'theoretical and empirical' embedding of these research questions (more specifically the question whether or not there is knowledge available concerning the subject of the study on which it can build (and how much) or whether or not the study has to start from scratch) and more pragmatic elements like time and budget (Yin, 1993; 1994; see also Campbell, 1979).

... A multiple case design allows to "test" the findings from one case study in the case studies which are performed later on (Yin, 1993; 1994). Each case can in this respect be considered as a (small) research project in itself, going through the successive stages of data collection, data analysis and reporting. Yin (1993; 1994) speaks of the ‘replication logic’ where 'testing' the findings of one case in or against the following cases is concerned; this can either be ‘literal replication’ (literally finding the same results, especially in exploratory and descriptive cases) or ‘theoretical replication’ (if the testing of a 'theory', model or hypotheses is at stake, as is the case in explanatory cases)." (Brandsma, 1999, p. 7f.)

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