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A city planning committee surveys 100 people waiting at a bus stop about the expansion...

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novjb | (Level 1) Salutatorian

Posted June 11, 2013 at 12:33 AM via web

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A city planning committee surveys 100 people waiting at a bus stop about the expansion of the public transportation system.

Pick the most appropriate description for this kind of sample.

(Random sample, systematic sample, self-selected sample, convenience sample bipartisan sample, stratified random sample)



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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted June 11, 2013 at 12:46 AM (Answer #1)

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The most appropriate term to use to define this sampling technique is “convenience sampling.”  The committee has chosen to interview people at a bus stop because this is a relatively convenient way for it to get something that approaches a true sample of the population. 

This sample is not at all random or systematic.  The people taking the survey did not give all the people in the urban area an equal chance to be in the survey.  Only people who use this one bus stop have any chance of being surveyed.

This sample does have some aspects of a self-selected sample.  The people have selected to ride the bus on this particular day.  However, that does not really make it a self-selected sample because they did not specifically choose to take this survey.  A truly self-selected survey would be one that was advertised to everyone and was taken by those who chose to take it.  These people are taking the survey because they are at this bus stop, not because they heard about it and chose to take it.

Instead, this is a convenience sample.  The committee feels that, if it conducts the survey in this way, it can learn something about people’s attitudes without having to go to the expense of conducting a more scientific survey.  They have chosen to interview these people because it is convenient to just go to one bus stop and talk to the people they find there.

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