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Assessing methods of sampling

Several different methods of sampling can be used when conducting research. Specifically, researchers can use methods such as: non-random sampling, simple random sampling, systematic sampling, cluster sampling, multistage sampling, proportionate sampling, and stratified sampling.

With your hypothetical research study in mind, describe your target population and select an appropriate sampling method listed above. Provide a clear rationale as to why you believe this method would be superior to the others listed above in your answer. Briefly describe how your method of sampling impacts the external and internal validity of your study.

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Sampling and Anomie Research Study

Just to refresh, our research outline looks like this:

Our basic hypothesis is that the breakdown of Detroit is caused, at least in large part, by the breakdown of the family and the resultant social anomie. Contrasting to thriving cities like Charlotte and Irvine, we should see far stronger families and stronger identification with the law and the legal system in general. We will use random sampling from those living only within the metro area. The suburbs are left out. Our variables will include education, dropout rates, change in population, and most importantly, single parent households. These variables will give us a handle on the state of affairs both socially and psychologically in the three areas.

While using regression with publicly available data from multiple sources, our variables will be significant. If it were to be switched to qualitative data, several options are open. First, we could actually visit these cities and try to interview citizens in different parts of the metro area. Second, we can research what journalists and politicians are saying about these cities. The blunt comments of ex-mayor Bing of Detroit make this a promising approach. Finally, we might contact, by phone or letter, political elites in the city, asking them about their opinions concerning their cities rise or decline and its causes. This might be a problem due to the low return rates expected.

In general, this should be a regression based, quantitative research project with crime rates as the dependent variable (we would come up with a composite measure) relative to variables such as education, unemployment, single parent households and population change. These together will help quantify anomie or alienation which, in turn, will give some indication as to whether or not anomie is the cause (or the effect) of the fortunes of these cities.

Since we are interested in the city as a unit, any form of clustering or proportional stratification is out of the question. If we use different forms of ...

Solution Summary

The expert examines assessing methods of sampling. Hypothetical research studies are provided.