Case Studies and Discourse Analysis in Qualitative Geoscience Education Research

Thursday, Friday 8:30am-11:30am Science Village 2


Samuel Nyarko, Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis
Susan Meabh Kelly, Connecticut State Department of Education

The goal of this workshop is to identify the types of research problems/questions that can be answered within qualitative education research frameworks. The primary focus will be on evaluating how decisions are made to identify a qualitative research design. We will specifically learn about the two major qualitative case study designs (single and multiple case), their differences, and the use of critical discourse analysis in these designs. The hope is that the workshop will be a time for us to share our work with one another and receive advice and feedback on our projects.


Case study remains one of the most effective methodological approach but also the most challenging in qualitative research. When, why, and how to use case study to explore a phenomenon or a topic can be a daunting task for researchers, especially students and early career professionals. This workshop aims to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of qualitative case study research and equip them with the necessary knowledge and skills to conduct and analyze case studies effectively. We will also introduce an innovative analytical approach, discourse analysis in case study designs, and ways to enhance validity and reliability in qualitative case studies.

The workshop aims to foster a collaborative learning environment where participants can engage with experts and colleagues, exchange ideas, and gain practical insights into this powerful research methodology. Join us in this workshop and unlock the potential of qualitative case studies in your research endeavors.

Workshop Program »

Target Audience

Whether you are a researcher, a student, or a professional in various fields, this workshop will help you unlock the potential of qualitative case study research in generating rich and in-depth insights.


Participants will have a solid foundation in qualitative case study research and will be equipped with the necessary skills to design, conduct, analyze and report their own qualitative case studies. The specific goals for the workshop are:

  1. Familiarization with qualitative case study research designs and methods.
  2. Familiarization with qualitative discourse analysis approaches.
  3. Assist participants in developing the aim, design, methods, tools and analysis plans for qualitative case studies and discourse analysis.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to

  1. Explain when to use case studies and identify the research questions, rationale for doing a case study, and deciding to use the case study method. Explain the two case study designs (single case and multiple case).
  2. Select and use appropriate case study designs based on the unit of analysis and case selection and understanding their strengths and limitations.
  3. Use appropriate case study data collection and analytical techniques
  4. Explain discourse analysis   
  5. Select and apply discourse analysis using an appropriate unit of analysis.
  6. Analyze the affordances and limitations of discourse analysis.


The workshop will be structured in a way that combines theoretical knowledge with practical exercises and interactive discussions. Each session will focus on specific aspects of qualitative case study research and will provide ample opportunities for participants to engage in hands-on activities and exchange ideas with fellow participants and the facilitators.

See the the workshop program for a detailed schedule of daily events.

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