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  • All items in any field of inquiry constitute a ‘Universe’

or ‘Population’. A complete enumeration of all items in the ‘Population’ is known as a census enquiry.

  • • In many real world statistics applications, it is impractical to study an entire population. When this is the case, a subgroup of the population, called a sample, can be evaluated. Based upon this sample, the parameters of the underlying population can be estimated.

Population vs. Sample

  • A “population” is defined as the set of all possible

members of a stated group and measure of

characteristic of a population is a “parameter”.

  • A “Sample” is Population Sample defined as a subset of the population of interest and measure of the characteristic of a Sample sample is “Statistic”

Surveys vs. Respondents

  • Surveys ask respondents for information using verbal or written questioning.

  • Respondents are a representative sample of people

Gathering Information via Surveys

  • Advantages

  • • Quick

  • • Inexpensive

  • • Efficient

  • • Accurate

  • • Flexible


Poor Design Improper Execution

What is a Sample design ?

  • A sample design is a definite plan (technique or

procedure) for obtaining a sample from a given population.

  • • It is determined before data are collected.

  • • It should be reliable and appropriate for the research study

Steps in Sample Design

  • • Define clearly about the universe or population under study.

  • • Define sampling unit (region, house or flat, family, club, school, or individual)

  • • Source of collecting the sample

  • • Size of sample

  • • Parameters of interest

  • • Budgetary constraint

  • • Sampling procedure

Characteristics of a good Sample


  • It must result in a truly representative sample.

  • • It must result in a small sampling error and thus help in controlling the systematic bias in a better way.

  • • Sampling errors are the random variations in the sample estimates around the true population parameters. SE decreases with sample size.

  • • Measurement of SE is called the ‘precision of the sampling plan’.

  • • It must be viable in the context of funds available for the research study.

Different types of Sample designs

  • Sample designs are based on the following factors:

  • • The representation basis

  • Non-probability Sample

  • • Items included are chosen without regard to thei probability of occurrence

  • • Probability Sample

  • • Items in the sample are chosen on the basis of known probabilities

Types of Samples Used

Types of Samples Used

Probability Sampling

Probability Sampling

Simple Random Samples

  • Every individual or item from the frame has an equal chance of being selected

  • • Selection may be with replacement or without replacement

  • • Samples obtained from table of random numbers or computer random number generators

Stratified Samples

  • Divide population into two or more subgroups (called strata) according to some common characteristic

  • • A simple random sample is selected from each subgroup, with sample sizes proportional to strata sizes

  • • Samples from subgroups are combined into one

Cluster Samples

  • Population is divided into several “clusters,” each representative of the population

  • • A simple random sample of clusters is selected

Advantages and Disadvantages

  • Simple random sample and systematic sample

    • • Simple to use

    • • May not be a good representation of the population’s underlying characteristics

  • • Stratified sample

    • • Ensures representation of individuals across the entire population

  • • Cluster sample

    • • More cost effective

    • • Less efficient ( need larger sample to acquire the same level of precision)