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Modal instance sampling

 

Techniques > ResearchSampling > Modal instance sampling

Use | Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Use

Use when you want to investigate thoughts and actions of 'typical' people and when you fear that significant data about this group of people might be lost in a more general study.

Method

Identify what 'typical' means. This could be done by a preliminary study to find the best variables to use and the most common values for these.

Select people for further study based on these criteria.

Example

A researcher wants to study the typical video game user. They do an initial study of a wide range of people and find that the majority of people playing video games are prosperous males between the ages of 18 and 25. They then recruit only people who fit this criteria to do their study.

Discussion

The mode is the most common item in a population. For example the most common international male shoe size is 43. The mode can thus be considered as typical of a population.

In practice, what is modal (or 'typical') is often based more on the views of the researcher than an extensive pre-study. For example, a TV reporter may seek 'typical weekday shoppers' and hence pick on conventionally-dressed women who look between the ages of 25 and 35 and who are pushing a pram (note how these can be judged from appearance only, making the job easier).

Modal instance sampling is a form of purposive sampling and is a non-probability method.

See also

 

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