The Live Case Study: Filling the Gap between the Case Study and the Experiential Exercise


  • Peter M. Markulis


Business Policy has been the subject of Innumerable ABSEL articles-- particularly ones which have debated the merits of case vs simulations; or lectures vs discussions. For example, over the past eleven years some 60 articles have appeared on this topic alone. Two issues which continually arise are ones dealing with pedagogical modes, for example, whether one type of mode is more realistic than another and whether one type of mode Is more experientially-based than another. There is a presumption, of course, that some sort of realism and experientially-based instruction are imperative for a Business Policy course. The following paper presents a variation of the standard case study methodology, called the ‘live’ case approach. The paper describes and presents a rationale for the Live Case approach in Business Policy courses, particularly for undergraduate courses. The Live Case is presented as both a more realistic approach to learning and as a more experientially-based pedagogy than standard text- nook cases. The article cites the advantages and disadvantages of the Live Case approach and concludes with the author’s personal observations on using the Live Case approach in a senior level undergraduate Business Policy course. The article also contains an important “howto- do-it” section for practitioners.