ERIC Number: ED420626
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Jan
Bridging the Gap between Theory and Practice: Fostering Active Learning through the Case Method.
Kuntz, Susan; Hessler, Arthur
For years, the case study approach to learning has helped connect formal learning with real life situations. Cases offer a means of combining the content to be taught and processes by which it will be taught, and it provides students with a situation for learning that makes sense to them and connects them to what they know in a meaningful way. The pedagogic philosophy used in the case study approach is bound by the belief that learning is primarily a self-acquired process. The case method is learner-centered, relying on students' experiences to collect, interpret, and explain circumstances presented in the case. The case method provides learners with facts and parameters of a particular event and asks them to examine possible interpretations and investigate approaches to what is happening. The case method effectively enhances learning because it: (1) develops higher order thinking skills, (2) illustrates the relevance of the study in society, (3) asks students to question assumptions underlying the theories presented, and (4) shows learning from the cases long after the study concludes. The paper addresses reform effects in scientific teaching and learning by providing a case study that includes both storytelling and an accompanying laboratory. The study was designed using a rubric of criteria that emerged from the literature on case method and scientific learning. (Contains 11 references.) (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - General; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) (84th, Washington, DC, January 15-17, 1998).