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Sampling In Research Free essay! Download now

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Sampling In Research

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Downloads to date: N/A | Words: 4934 | Submitted: 31-Mar-2011
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Sampling In Research


What is the purpose of sampling? To draw conclusions about populations from samples, we must use inferential statistics which enables us to determine a population`s characteristics by directly observing only a portion (or sample) of the population. We obtain a sample rather than a complete enumeration (a census ) of the population for many reasons. Obviously, it is cheaper to observe a part rather than the whole, but we should prepare ourselves to cope with the dangers of using samples. In this tutorial, we will investigate various kinds of sampling procedures. Some are better than others but all may yield samples that are inaccurate and unreliable. We will learn how to minimize these dangers, but some potential error is the price we must pay for the convenience and savings the samples provide.
There would be no need for statistical theory if a census rather than a sample was always used to obtain information about populations. But a census may not be practical and is almost never economical. There are six main reasons for sampling instead of doing a census. These are; -Economy -Timeliness -The large size of many populations -Inaccessibility of some of the population -Destructiveness of the observation -accuracy
The economic advantage of using a sample in research Obviously, taking a sample requires fewer resources than a census. For example, let us assume that you are one of the very curious students around. You have heard so much about the famous Cornell and now that you are there, you want to hear from the insiders. You want to know what all the students at Cornell think about the quality of teaching they receive, you know that all the students are different so they are likely to have different perceptions and you believe you must get all these perceptions so you decide because you want an indepth view of every student, you will conduct personal interviews with each one of them and you want the results in 20 days only, let us assume this particular time you are doing your research Cornell has only 20,000 students and those who are helping are so fast at the interviewing art that together you can interview at least 10 students per person per day in addition to your 18 credit hours of course work. You will require 100 research assistants for 20 days and since you are paying them minimum wage of $5.00 per hour for ten hours ($50.00) per person per day, you will require $100000.00 just to complete the interviews, analysis will just be impossible. You may decide to hire additional assistants to help with the analysis at another $100000.00 and so on assuming you have that amount on your account.
As unrealistic as this example is, it does illustrate the very high cost of census. For the type of information desired, a small wisely selected sample of Cornell students can serve the purpose. You don`t even have to hire a single assistant. You can complete the interviews and analysis on your own. Rarely does a circustance require a census of the population, and even more rarely does one justify the expense.
The time factor.

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