Random selection in research means that individuals are selected randomly from the population in question. Files from the student-athlete counseling center were obtained and a random selection of files that would be used were obtained. Smith and Davis (2010) explains that sampling is a very important part of research whereas the researcher wants to ensure that there is a good representation of the purpose of the study. The researcher could randomly select files by requesting a certain number of files of students who have been or are receiving counseling services during a certain time.
There are four possible outcomes that if we pulled another student-athlete file from the counseling center: sport performance issues, coaching issues, school issues or any other category;
Probability of sport performance issues = ¼ chance
Probability of coaching or school issues = ½ chance
Probability of another other category = ¼ chance
Convenience sampling, sometimes called accidental or grab sampling, is the type of sampling that is conducted based on availability. Convenience sampling usually embodies people that are easy to reach or easy to solicit participation. The type of research is important to know and understand whereas it can determine the population of convenience sampling. Facebook, the local clinic or the school are all examples of people that can be used in convenience sampling. In this research situation, probability sampling would be most suitable. Probability sampling allows for each participant in the sample having an equal chance. In this situation and dependent on the purpose of the study, a probability sample would give a true representation of the student athletes and their reasons for seeking counseling services. The probabilities and results would be different if convenience sampling was used. Because the hypothesis is to learn why college student-athletes use sport psychology services, students from a convenience sample would not yield the information needed. For example, students who are not athletes would not likely seek sport psychology services but student counseling services. Although it is easier to obtain information from a student population within a school, to obtain the information needed, the sample should consist of student-athletes only that utilize sport psychology services.
Smith, R. A. & Davis, S. F. (2010). The psychologist as detective (5th ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.
#2. What does it mean to say the files were randomly selected?
· When files are randomly selected it refers to a process used in research to draw a sample of population strictly by chance. Beyond any created by chance, no discernible pattern or order is allowed. Therefore, the sample is said to be randomly.
How would the researcher randomly select files? In other words, what is the process of selection?
· Researchers randomly select files by first numbering the population. Then according to a table of random numbers, researchers select the sample. Computer-based random number generators can also be used.
What is the probability that if we pulled another student-athlete file from the counseling center, the new student-athlete would fall in each of the following categories: (a) sport performance issues, (b) coaching issues or school issues, and (c) any category except others?
· The probability that pulling another student-athlete file from the counseling center, the new student-athlete would fall into the one of three categories. Probability of sport performance issues would be ¼ or 25%. Probability of coaching issues or school issues would be ½ or 50%. Probability of any category except other would be ¾ or 75%.
What type of convenience sampling is most suitable for this research situation?
· Due to practical considerations, nonrandom sampling is sometimes necessary. Convenience sampling uses people who are readily available, volunteer, or easily recruited for inclusion in a sample (Christensen, 2013). In this situation, where college students are participating in the research, quota sampling would be most suitable. Groups of reasons why college student-athletes seek sport psychology serveries have been identified. Other types of nonrandom sampling that could be used are purposive and snowball sampling.
Would the probabilities and results be different if we used convenience sampling? Why or why not?
· The probabilities and results would be different if convenience sampling was used. Methods behind nonrandom sampling like convenience sampling, help researchers find the number of participants wanted. However, the way participants are collected can easily affect the results (Emerson, 2015). This is done through introducing factors that are unexpected or uncontrolled.
· #3. What does it mean to say the files were randomly selected?
Random sampling is a process used that allow researchers to draw a sample of the population by chance. This method allows no discernable pattern to be created, beyond anything created by chance. Each individual in the population is chosen by random so each individual has just as much probability to be chosen. This is done in order to minimize the risk of misleading conclusions or skewed results.
· How would the researcher randomly select files? In other words, what is the process of selection?
There are three ways to perform random sampling: simple, systematic, and stratified.
Simple Random Sampling: In this method, a sample frame is required. Each individual from the population is given a random number, in ascending or descending order. . Next, data is chosen using a random number table, a computer generated random number system, lottery method, currency notes, etc.
Systematic: In this method, the first subject is randomly selected then a periodic process is used to choose subsequent subject selections (every kth item is selected, where k is determined by dividing the number of items in the sampling frame by the desired sample size).
Stratified: in the method, data is divided into various subgroups sharing common characteristics. A random sample is then taken from each subgroup. This is useful because it ensures that there is representation of each group in the population that is needed.
· What is the probability that if we pulled another student-athlete file from the counseling center, the new student-athlete would fall in each of the following categories: (a) sport performance issues, (b) coaching issues or school issues, and (c) any category except others?
There is a ¼ (25%) chance that they would fall into “Sport Performance issues:, ½ (50%) chance they’d fall in “Coaching or School”, and a ¾ (75%) chance they’d fall into any other category besides “Others”.
· What type of convenience sampling is most suitable for this research situation?
Convenience sampling is a nonrandom sampling method in which individuals who fit the criteria of a study are identified in any way possible (Emerson 2015). It’s a non-probability sampling which involves the sample being drawn due to convenience, accessibility, or proximity to the researcher. In this specific scenario, quota sampling would be more suitable than snowball sampling. Like stratified sampling, the population is divided into categories and subjects are selected from each category. It would probably include less bias than snowball sampling, where additional respondents are obtained using information provided by their initial respondents.
· Would the probabilities and results be different if we used convenience sampling? Why or why not?
Yes, I believe so. Convenience sampling may help researchers obtain the exact demographic of participants they desire. This way of gathering, however, may influence the results by introducing unexpected or uncontrolled factors. In convenience sampling, most of the participants are from the same geographical area, have similar socioeconomic statuses, or ethnic backgrounds (Emerson, 2015). This may skew the results since it may impact what the study is investigating. It’s often not recommended due to the lack of representation in the population.