Case Teaching & Analytical Tools

  • Analytical frameworks are effective tools to manage complexity and are the keys to meaningful teaching and learning in the social sciences.
  • Analytical tools enable students to drive their own analysis –and at the same time –enable teachers to establish clear criteria for detail, depth, scope and balance.

When we ask students to respond to profound questions about the human condition, a teacher’s case preparation and a student’s problem-based learning can be fully supported by analytical frames.  Both teachers and students use tools to achieve depth and scope that are necessary for meaningful responses to challenging issues.

Examples of how simple frames support complex questions:

The tag will select a limited set of database materials as a way to get started.

search tag Analytical Frameworks
video: Four Worlds

4W intro

Four Worlds (4W) — identify social science factors and trace dynamics between them
→ How do societies organize themselves to provide stability? …prosperity? …equity? 
→ What is the root cause of slavery? Are causes the same across time and across cultures?
video: Equality Continuum


 the equality continuum — identify distinctions between different views of “the other”
→ What does it mean to value diversity?  What policies are needed to value diversity while promoting unity?
→ What are the dimensions of equality and its relationship to liberty, identity, diversity and responsibility in today’s world?
causes of war


levels of analysis — Examine individual wars and compare wars in order to build & test theories about causes of a specific war and causes of war in general
→ What do different causes of war tell us about possible paths to peace?
♦ establish a wide variety of factors or variables and distinguish them across three levels: human, national, systemic
 Is one level more significant? Why are all levels important? 
♦ extends across different periods of imperialism, the cold war, and the post cold war to build & test theories about historical context
→ What is significantly different and what is essentially the same about causes of war over time?


worldviews – Professor Steven Lamy’s analytical model of three worldviews: maintainer, reformer, transformer
→ According to each worldview, how do we best achieve and maintain security?
♦ Prof Lamy uses the DEPPP process that is now applied by CALIS to many topics as a basic tool for multiple perspectives analysis
→ How can we trace the logic and merit of contending perspectives toward effective negotiation, problem-solving or conflict management?
changing nature of security


concept maps -identify dynamics and frame key concepts for meaningful comparison:
♦ World Order Models → At the global level, what system provides the greatest order and stability?
♦ Human Security Agenda: How secure are you? → How can we balance national interest and human interest? (continuum)
♦ Lifeline: the Post Cold War Era, 1990 – present  → What are personal and global implications of globalization? (timeline & 4W chart)
See search tags for TIRP topics