Section Nine

Case Studies

The case study is an effective teaching strategy that is used to facilitate learning, improve critical thinking, and enhance decision-making Sprang, (2010). Below are nine case studies that educators may employ when working with students on mental illness and addiction. The case studies provided cover major concepts contained in the RNAO Nurse Educator Mental Health and Addiction Resource.

While not exhaustive, the case studies were developed and informed by the expert panel. It is recommended that educators use the case studies and tweak or add questions as necessary to impart essential information to students. Also, educators are encouraged to modify them to suit the learning objective and mirror the region in which the studies are taking place. Potential modifications include:

  1. demographics (age, gender, ethnicity);
  2. illness and addiction, dual diagnosis or additional co-morbidities such as cardiovascular disease; and
  3. setting (clinical, community).

Suggested “Student questions” explore areas of learning, while “Educator elaborations” recommend ways to modify the case study. Discussion topics are a limited list of suggested themes.

When using these case studies, it is essential that this resource is referenced.

See Engaging Clients Who Use Substances BPG appendices for examples