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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 ?
In the subodontoblastic region, both hypomineralised subgroups had significantly greater neural TRPV1 expression that was the seen for sound samples (P <0.
The program comes with more than 800 videos and sound samples.
I would not be surprised if sound samples are added soon to the CD album listings to allow the user to get a feel about the content.
com, Music Boulevard is a one-stop service where customers can listen to 30-second sound samples, view album art or artist photos, read album reviews or musician biographies, and buy from an extensive music catalog featuring over 145,000 listings.
The sound samples for each instrument and music tracks were provided by Clean Cuts Music, an original music and sound design company out of Washington D.
Audio recordings on the website provide nice sound samples.
The selection of sound samples included tones at various frequencies, sweeps and a variety of test tracks - all encoded lossless flac or 320 KBps MP3.
During shows, Wookie provides digital sound samples and light effects.
A chance for 7-12 year olds to work with artists an remix sound samples and also create their own CD's.
The drag-and-drop interface means you'll have a tune blasting from your speakers in minutes and comes with 5000 sound samples, many of which come direct from DJs Cut La Roc and Milk & Sugar, allowing you to compose in a wide variety of styles.
Not only has he used it to broadcast live shows direct from his studio ('it felt like one of the most intimate things I'd done, which is not an adjective I'd have applied to the Internet before that,' he admits), but also provides sound samples that users can download to create works of their own.
The albums that do have sound samples feature three or four 30second samples at most.