Has anyone taken a college course in which the classes consisted of decision-forcing cases? If so, what was your experience? How did it work?
When I was in undergrad at Dickinson College, I took a course entitled Small State Actors in International Crisis. The class consisted entirely of cases from the various Balkan States, as well as the Ottoman Empire, before the First Balkan War.
The experience opened my eyes to the complexities of making decisions at the strategic level, how a leader must prioritize potential gains and losses, and the task of not only seeing the problem at hand, but also the problems that may arise from every action, including taking no action.
Every class followed a format where roughly fifteen minutes was a brief of the situation at hand, then the professor turning to us and asking, "Now what?" At that point, students would talk about what they would do in this situation, citing either the briefing, or reading materials assigned before class. The only rule in the discussions was that we could not reference events we had no knowledge of, so a student dealing with a case in 1914 could not reference events from 1945.
The effect of the class was multi-fold. Compared to other classes I took, students were more engaged and comfortable expressing their viewpoint. There was never a 'right' answer, encouraging creativity from students. The interdisciplinary nature of the class encouraged discussions ranging from economics to international relations to sociology. As a result, students who began the semester as shy outliers eventually became more confident in expressing themselves, and everyone learned how to have their viewpoint challenged in a respectful manner.