How to Write a Critique for a Case Analysis

Law, science, psychology, medicine, business and education -- these fields all use case studies to glean quantifiable data from anecdotal situations both in the classroom and professional world. A case analysis provides a review and interpretation, also known as an assessment, of the study results to draw conclusions and solutions that can be applied on a broader basis. It’s the job of the critique to investigate and evaluate the case analysis findings.

Case Details Overview

A critique of a case analysis must first delineate the details of the case study for readability and clarity. This includes all of the factual data produced by the original case study, such as the dates the study was conducted, significant statistical data and the impact of variables. The case overview may also need to address whether the case study data is qualitative or quantitative, which involves noting whether the information is mathematically measurable. The case overview should be a brief synopsis of the case study designed to provide information needed to understand the critique, not a full explanation.

Unbiased Interpretation of Analysis

A critique must also detail the findings of the case analysis using impartial language. Whether your critique questions or validates the analysis, calls the findings into question or simply suggests alternative viewpoints, the conclusions of the case analysis under evaluation must first be presented objectively. This means employing the use of objective language to avoid making personal, judgmental or emotive statements in the paragraphs presenting the findings.

Thesis Rationale

The thesis statement for a critique must address the fundamental issues being raised or questions being asked about the case analysis. Unlike pure analysis, a critique is influenced by personal opinions and beliefs, and the thesis statement should indicate the author’s rationale. The thesis must provide the critique writer’s position statement clearly and concisely. The thesis should also identify the intent of the critique, such as whether it aims to validate or question the case analysis.

Point and Counterpoint

Support for the opinions presented in the thesis statement are provided by counterpoints that address the points made in the case analysis. It’s important to provide a counterargument for all of the major arguments and findings in a case study analysis to prove the validity of your thesis statement. Critiques that gloss over or ignore significant data may be considered invalid for failing to address the full analysis.

Validation or Dissension

A critique is typically either a dissension or validation of the case study analysis, and it should avoid presenting new information from other sources, such as data from other case studies not addressed by the case analysis. In some instances, a critique may present new thoughts or ideas in the form of alternative interpretations of the original case study that the case analysis did not cover.

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