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Research Methodology


Dr. Azadeh Asgari

Population & Sample

all individuals in a group that has similar characteristics (one or more) to be studied by the researcher.
e.g.: all counselors; all male teachers teaching in secondary schools; all UPM students

Population & Sample
SAMPLE: 1. Part of a chosen population to be observed and analyzed. 2. By observing the randomized samples’ characteristics, several inferences on the population may be made. 3. Differences between sample, subjects, respondents.

Parameter & Statistics
 Parameter:

values obtained from a population.
 Statistics:

values obtained from a sample

 Basic to scientific observations and research  Assumption – even if we cannot precisely

predict specific events (e.g.: Individual’s achievement), but we can precisely predict the average/mean achievement of the group

Types of Sampling
1. Probability Sampling
2. Non-probability Sampling

Types of Probability Sampling
1. Simple random sampling / selection 2. Systematic sampling

3. Stratified sampling
4. Cluster sampling

Randomization of Sample

BASIC TO RANDOMISATION = simple randomization = every individual in the group has equal opportunity (equal chance) to be chosen i.e. not biased Choosing one subject is independent of the others . Researcher can assume that the characteristics of the sample approximate the characteristics of total population

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Sampling Frame

Assigning a number to all individuals in a population. Using the sampling frame, the sample is chosen / drawn.

Simple Random Sampling (selection)
a. Fish Bowl Technique

b. Table of Random Numbers
c. Computer Generated Numbers

Table of Random Numbers
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 _____________________________________________________________ _ 1 10480 15011 01536 02011 81647 91646 69179 14194 62590 36207 2 22368 46573 25595 85393 30995 89198 27982 53402 93965 34095 3 24130 48360 22527 97265 76393 64809 15179 24830 49340 32081 4 42167 93093 06243 61680 07856 16376 39440 53537 71341 57004 5 37570 39975 81837 16656 06121 91782 60468 81305 49684 60672 6 77921 06907 11008 42751 27756 53498 18602 70659 90655 15053 7 99562 72905 56420 69994 98872 31016 71194 18738 44013 48840 8 96301 91977 05463 07972 18876 20922 94595 56869 69014 60045 9 89579 14342 63661 10281 17453 18103 57740 84378 25331 12566 10 85475 36857 53342 53988 53060 59533 38867 62300 01858 17893

Systematic Sampling
Steps: a. Calculate the Interval b. Draw the Initial Number c. Select the Other Sample

Systematic Sampling

In this technique, randomization is done only on the initial number. Drawing the initial number, fixed the other individuals in the sampling frame.

Weakness of Systematic Sampling

There are numbers which do not have equal opportunity to be chosen – thus a slight biasness. Choice of a subject depends on another.

Stratified Sampling

To reduce sampling error and to increase precision without increasing sample size. To ensure all strata are represented (not different from the population) In a stratum the population is more homogenous
 e.g.: socio economic status, gender, level of intelligence, level of anxiety

If variance is reduced and therefore, sampling error will be reduced

Stratified Sampling
Steps: 1) Determine the ratio between the strata 2) Ensure the sample size 3) Divide the number of sample according to the initial ratio within the population 4) Select the sample using randomisation technique

Cluster Sampling
 Sampling is according to clusters and not

individuals within each cluster
 Conducted if individuals to be sampled are

not known
 This technique maintained the principles of


Cluster Sampling
 Need not know individuals within each cluster.  If the clusters within the population are far apart .  Very suitable and more precise if many small clusters are chosen, therefore similar to the population.  Not suitable if a large cluster is chosen since it

may not represent the population.  Sampling error is even larger if a big and homogeneous cluster is selected.

Types of Non-Probability Sampling
Sample of Convenience or Accidental Sampling

– Weak sampling procedure – Using available cases for the research e.g.: Interviewing the first individual you meet;
using you volunteers class students; interviewing

Types of Non-Probability Sampling
Purposive Sampling - Judgment Sampling

Sampling element is decided to represent the population. e.g.: Interviewing all possible voters in a district, and using the result to predict the voting pattern for the whole state

Sampling Error
 Randomized sample may not represent population.  Variations my occur, called SAMPLING ERROR .  This variation is not an error caused by the researcher, but it occurs as a result of the sampling process.

Selection of Biased Sample
I. From a telephone directory

II. From a list of magazine subscribers
III. From a list of registered vehicles

Sampling Error (e)

Often occurs if the mean sample is used to estimate mean population. Refers to the difference between population parameter and the sample statistics. _

E = x-µ

Sample Size
 Large enough so that it is representative of the population.

 Crucial issue is representativeness & not the sample size
e.g.: Sample of 200 which has been randomly selected is better than a randomly selected sample of 100; but a randomly selected sample of 100 is better than a biased sample of 2.5 million individuals.

Aspects in Determining Sample Size
ECONOMY – researcher’s financial situation MANAGEABLE SAMPEL SIZE by researcher – during data collection VALIDITY – a large enough size needed for high validity RELIABILITY - a large enough size needed for high reliability UTILIZATION OF INFERENTIAL STATISTICS – depends of the type of inferential statistics to be used
– – – – – Descriptive – large Inferential – correlation, minimum 30 Inferential – comparing two groups, 30 for each group Inferential – comparing more two groups, 30 for each group Experimental – small

Hypothesis Testing
 Testing null hypothesis using different tests

based on type of measurement scales and data.
 Make decision on the null hypothesis.  Make decision on the alternative hypothesis.

Type I & II Error Scheme



Type I & II Error
Type I Error Rejecting a true null hypothesis
e.g. Rejecting ho = there exist no relationship between both variables – which is true

Type II Error Accepting a false null hypothesis

Accepting ho = there exist no relationship between both variables – which is false

Level of Significance

Researcher needs to weigh the consequences of type I and ii errors before conducting the research (how strong the evidence must be before they would reject ho). Level at which ho may be rejected = level of significance

Level of Significance

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Researcher may avoid type I error by accepting ho all the time. Or avoid type II error by rejecting it all the time. Reducing the value of level of significance (from .05 to .01 or .001) reduces the risk of doing a type I error but increases the risk of doing a type II error.