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# RESEARCH NOTE PART 6

SELECTION OF SUBJECTS
1. Population
2. Sample
3. Sampling Frame
4. Sample Size
5. Sampling Procedures:
Probability:

-

Non Probability

Simple Random Sample
Stratified Sample
Cluster Sample
Convenience
Judgment
Quota

POPULATION
The aggregate of the elements defined prior to selection of the sample. “All
members of any well-defined class of people, events, or objects.
Target Population
Accessible Population
SAMPLE
A small group drawn from the population and contains the characteristics of the
population.
PURPOSE OF SAMPLE
- To obtain information concerning the population.
- Concept of inductive reasoning is part of the scientific approach. Method
involves making observation and then drawing conclusions from those
observations.
- Sample must be representative if one is to be able to generalize with
confidence from the sample to the population
SAMPLING
- Which sample/organization to study out of the total population of
organizations.
- Samples are often chosen by precise procedure that aim to represent the
population.
- Select a sample that will facilitate the analysis to be made of the data.
Provides a means of identifying and locating the population elements.
- Organization of the frame often exerts a strong influence on the sampling
design.
- Ideal sampling frame would list each population element once and once only.
SAMPLING FRAME

5%. intensive counseling. a telephone book. 95% Confidence Interval . Often the availability of a sampling frame defines the population. . it is preferable to increase the sample size wherever practical. list of registered voters. or even a map. Number of groups to be analyzed 2. the smaller the sampling error and other things being equal. STEP 3: Decide on a sample size. Variability of the population SMALL OR LARGE SAMPLES? Between the economy and convenience of small samples lies a trade off point balancing practical considerations against statistical power and generalizability. STEP IN SELECTING A SAMPLE STEP 1: Define the population. role playing.96 SE (p) =2. Eg. an employee lists. the sampling units. the actual sample is drawn from such a list. it remains true that the larger the sample. In the case of a map we would be sampling pieces of geography. This would include: the elements. Value of information and accuracy required of the results. FACTORS DETERMINING SAMPLE SIZE 1. or projective instruments Nevertheless. This specification. as no perfect fit is available between population and frame. Some of the more creative thinking in a research project may be related to the specification of a sampling frame. At the final stage. you then search for a good sampling frame. such as psychodrama. specify the degree of precision required. A frame may be a class list. Here we determine how many elements to include in the sample. the extent. and the time. thus requires that 1. Deciding when a sample is too big or too small is a difficult problem. The frame list may be printed or stored in a computer file. Once a population is specified. on tape or disk. Non response rate has to be taken into consideration. 3.5%. where p= population percentage. Small samples are more appropriate for in depth case studies or where complex techniques of eliciting or evaluating behaviour are involved. or interviewing procedures.should be a sample percentage plus or minus 2.A sampling frame is a list of all the sampling units available for selection at a stage of the sampling process. STEP 2: Identify the sampling frame from which the sample will be selected. A city block would be an example. SAMPLE SIZE To determine an appropriate sample size: First. Cost of accessing the sample 4.

mix them well. This difference is called “sampling error”.STEP 4: Select a specific procedure by which the sample will be determined. That is. Random Sampling are: Definition of the population Listing of all members of the population. Selection of the sample by employing a procedure where sheer chance determines which members on the list are drawn for the sample. The probability sample allows the calculation of the likely extent to which the sample value differs from the population value of interest. than . The steps in 1. STRATIFIED SAMPLING 3. A ‘known chance’ and not an ‘equal chance’ of being selected. RANDOM SAMPLING 2.the distinction between: (1) a probability sample. each element of the population has a known chance of being selected for the sample. With a small population one might put the name or identification number of each member on a slip of paper and place these slips in a box. and the selection of X in no way affects Y’s probability of selection. SYSTEMATIC SAMPLING 4. PROBABILITY SAMPLING In probability sampling. but one fundamental concept must be established at the outset . X’s chance of being selected equals Y’s chance. Exactly how will the decision be made on which population elements to include in the sample? STEP 5: Physically select the sample based upon the procedure previously described. An equal-chance probability sampling is only a very special case of probability sampling called “sample random sampling”. 3. TYPES OF PROBABILITY SAMPLING 1. SAMPLING PROCEDURES There are many different procedures by which researchers may select their samples. The basic characteristic of random sampling is that all members of the population have an equal and independent chance of being included in the sample. CLUSTER SAMPLING RANDOM SAMPLING The best known of the sampling procedures is random sampling. for every pair of elements X and Y. The sampling is done by mathematical decision rules that leave no discretion to the researcher. and (2) a non probability sample. 2.

it is often desirable to use a form of sampling called stratified sampling. SYSTEMATIC SAMPLING Still another form of sampling is called systematic sampling. This procedure involves drawing a sample by taking every kth case from a list of the population. thus. One first decides how many subjects he wants in the sample (n). In such a case. one may be interested not merely in surveying the attitudes of youths who reside in small towns with those who live in mediumsize and large cities. usually by a computer. A more systematic procedure for drawing a random sample is to refer to a Table of Random Numbers. gender. such as income. k = N/n = 500/50 = 10. One would start near the top of the list so that the first case could be randomly selected from the first ten cases. In the study of youths. This is because one would expect opinions to differ systematically among various age or occupational groups. This is a table containing columns of digits that have been mechanically generated. Since he knows the total number of members in the population (N). For example. and then every kth member of the population is selected for the sample. to assure a random order. Say the third name or number on the list was the first to be selected. The basis for stratification may be geographical or it may involve characteristics of the population. Each member in the population is identified with a distinct number and then n numbers are selected from the Table of Random Numbers. one would divide the youth population into three groups. based on the size of the towns in which they reside. one first identifies the strata of interest and then draws a specified number of subjects from each stratum. he simply divides N by n and then determines the sampling interval (k) to apply to the list. and then every tenth case thereafter would be selected. The n numbers chosen from the table represent the n elements selected for the study. for example. occupation. let us assume a total population of 500 subjects and a desired sample size of 50 (n). IN stratified sampling. The first member is randomly selected from the first k members of the list. and then randomly select independent samples from each stratum. STRATIFIED SAMPLING When the population consists of a number of subgroups or strata that may differ in the characteristics being studied. For example. Then the sampling interval k or 10 is added to 3 and the thirteenth person falls in . Those slips drawn make up the sample. if one were conducting a poll designed to assess opinions on a certain political issue. it would be advisable to subdivide the population into groups on the basis of age or occupation.blindly draw the needed number of slips from the box.

etc. Examples are: (1) asking for people to volunteer to test products and using these people as respondents. it is impossible to calculate the sampling error that has occurred. NON PROBABILITY SAMPLING In non-probability sampling. Systematic sampling differs from simple random sampling in that the various choices are not independent. adding the constant sampling interval until the end of the list is reached. These individuals constitute a cluster insofar as they are alike with respect to characteristics relevant to the variables of the study. CONVENIENCE SAMPLING Convenience samples are selected. . as the name implies. it would be more convenient to study subjects in naturally occurring groups or clusters. In addition. This kind of sampling is referred to as cluster sampling since the unit chosen is not an individual but a group of individuals who are naturally together. on the basis of the convenience of the researcher.the sample. There is no way to determine whether or not the sample estimates calculated from a non probability sample are accurate or not. for example. to list all members of a target population and select the sample from among them. so does the twenty-third and so on. CLUSTER SAMPLING It is very difficult. Once the first case is chosen. the selection of a population element to be part of the sample is based in some part on the judgment of the researcher. (2) stopping people in a shopping mall to get their opinion. if not impossible. The population of Malaysia secondary school students. There is no known chance of any particular element in the population being selected. is so large that one cannot list all of its members for the purpose of drawing a sample. (3) using students for conducting an experiment. In this case. the researcher would choose a number of schools randomly from a list of schools and then include all the students in those schools in his sample. That is. all subsequent cases to be included in the sample are automatically determined. (4) having people in the streets interviewed by a television interviewer. it would be a very expensive undertaking to study a sample that is scattered all over the country. Therefore.

Again. For example. The television interviewer may state that her sample represents the community.In each instance. she is wrong. a judgment is made as to which cities constitute the best ones for testing the marketability of a new product. He/she must be regarded as a representative of the company by the person who draws the sample. Even the exact chance of these people being selected is unknown. if the expert judgment is valid. Convenience sampling is extensively used in practice. the decision to interview a purchasing agent about a given product constitutes a judgment sample. in test marketing. In such cases. it is unclear as to what population the actual sample is drawn from. Judgment sampling is moderately used in practice. However. the sampling unit or element is self-selected or has been selected because it was easily available. . It is only those who happened to be where the interviewer was at that time of the show who had a chance of being selected. However. Most members of the community had no chance of being selected. Clearly. JUDGEMENT SAMPLING Judgment samples or purposive samples are selected on the basis of what some experts thinks those particular sampling units or elements will contribute to answering the particular research question at hand. as a basis for generating hypotheses and for conclusive studies where the manager is willing to accept the risk that the study results might have great inaccuracies. and clearly we cannot make definitive or conclusive statements about the results from such a sample. In all cases. the degree and direction of error are unknown and definitive statements are not meaningful. In industrial marketing research. We cannot measure sampling error. in terms of both size and direction. the difference between the population value of interest and the sample value is unknown. Other examples could include an instructor’s choice of someone to start a class discussion: expert witnesses presenting their views in court. and the selection of stores in an area to try out a new display. the sample will be a better one than is a convenience sample is used. convenience samples can be most easily justified at the exploratory stage of research .