sampling

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sampling

the selection of part of a total population of consumers or products whose behaviour or performance can be analysed, in order to make inferences about the behaviour or performance of the total population, without the difficulty and expense of undertaking a complete census of the whole population.

Samples may be chosen randomly, with every consumer or product in the population having an equal chance of being included. Random samples are most commonly used by firms in QUALITY CONTROL where they are used as a basis for selecting products, components or materials for quality testing.

Alternatively, samples may be chosen by dividing up the total population into a number of distinct sub-groups or strata, then selecting a proportionate number of consumers or products from each sub-group since this is quicker and cheaper than random sampling. In MARKETING RESEARCH and opinion polling, quota sampling is usually employed where interviewers select the particular consumers to be interviewed, choosing the numbers of these consumers in proportion to their occurrence in the total population.

Samples may be:

  1. cross-sectional, where sample observations are collected at a particular point in time, for example data on company sales and the incomes of consumers in the current year, embracing a wide range of different income groups, as a basis for investigating the relationship between sales and income;
  2. longitudinal, where sample observations are collected over a number of time periods, for example data on changes in company sales over a number of years and changes in consumer incomes over the same time periods, as a basis for investigating the relationship between sales and income. See STATISTICAL INFERENCES, QUESTIONNAIRE.
References in periodicals archive ?
because it can play back 16-bit sound at 44 KHz sampling rate (theoretically slightly lower quality than the 16-bit sound at 48 KHz sampling rate of CD-audio), is pretty social, and the $160 price tag is tolerable.
USB Music Studio requires a Pentium-class 233MHz, Windows 98/ME/2000/XP, Internet Connection, 64MB RAM, 16X CD-ROM and a 16-bit sound card (Turtle Beach Santa Cruz recommended), and an available USB port.
Both feature a 16-bit sound card, Aztech's double speed CD-ROM and several popular award-winning CD-ROM titles.
Both products' minimum system requirements are a Pentium-class 233MHz, Windows 98/ME/2000/XP, Internet Connection, 64MB RAM, 16X CD-ROM and a 16-bit sound card (Turtle Beach Santa Cruz recommended).
Now along with active matrix color, an internal 200ms CD-ROM drive, and a 486 DX2 50MHZ processor, the DynaVision offers a 16-bit sound card.
Though all Atigo products have multimedia features including a built-in 16-bit sound microphone/speaker and a stereo headphone jack; the Atigo M adds enhanced support for multimedia, specifically high quality video.
A 16-bit sound card and an 8 MB video card with 3D acceleration, 16-bit color depth, both DirectX 8.