The Making of Collegiate DECA's Individual and Team Case Studies

Apr 6, 2020

Collegiate DECA’s competitive events program allows student members to participate in career-related competition. There are a variety of competitive events, and this resource will narrow the focus to the Individual and Team Case Studies.

The Individual and Team Case Studies involve real-world industry trends that present a challenge for competitors to solve. The case study scenarios are derived from input from National Advisory Board partners, industry associations and trade journals. Case study scenarios reflect the actual problems and trends faced in the workplace environment.

A sample of resources used to monitor industry trends include:

In addition, multiple daily industry SmartBriefs produced by the National Retail Federation are used as resources including Hotel & Lodging, Retail, Restaurant, Business Marketing, Food Marketing, Travel, Global Marketing, Entrepreneurs, Main Street, People+Strategy and What’s Next (Technology). Find these smartbriefs at

Each Individual and Team Case Study event is designed to measure students’ knowledge and skills in a specific instructional area. To achieve this, each case study has five unique performance indicators that are used to evaluate the effectiveness of student competition. DECA’s performance indicators are derived using National Curriculum Standards in Business Management and Administration, Finance, Hospitality and Tourism and Marketing. Standards have been reviewed and analyzed by industry professionals to ensure they align with actual business operations practices.

Instructional areas are not repeated within a competitive event academic year, except in certain events that have a direct focus on an area, such as Human Resource Management, Sales Management Meeting and Finance events. Also, instructional areas are not repeated at the same competition level annually. This practice provides competitors with a wider breadth of instructional areas each year.

The five performance indicators in Individual and Team Case Studies also include at least one performance indicator from a career pathway. Career pathways represent occupations within a career cluster that are grouped according to shared commonalities such as knowledge and skillsets or common roles.

Ready to put your new knowledge to the test? Explore Collegiate DECA’s Sample Case Studies and Exams to practice for your next competition.


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Discussion Questions

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Classroom Connection

Career CLuster:

Instructional Area(s):

Performance Indicators:

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