How To Determine A Good Sample Size For Quantitative Research

When doing quantitative research of any kind, you will certainly have a lot on your plate. It takes time to get everything properly prepared, to determine the variables and to conduct the entire research. This is not something that you can do on the spur of the moment, which just means that you will have to take your time to go through the entire process.

And, of course, in addition to taking the necessary time, you will also need to be absolutely sure that you know precisely what needs to be done, since winging it is not exactly a good option.

Speaking of knowing precisely what needs to be done, there is one question that usually bothers anyone who wants to do this type of research. It is a question that certainly needs to be properly answered if you want the research to be successful. In case you cannot guess which question I am referring to here, let me cut right to the chase.

Here it is – what is a good sample size for quantitative research? Everyone who wants to embark on this particular journey wonders this specific thing before taking any final steps towards it.

Now, this is a question that is not answered as easily as you might think. That’s because there is no one-size-fits-all answer to it. In other words, the size of the sample depends on numerous different things, meaning that you’ll need to spend some time determining it instead of simply trying to wing it and call it a day.

I suppose you understand why winging it is not the right move here, since you do want your research to be successful and that won’t be possible without the right sample.

While you are probably perfectly aware of the fact that you need to be careful and precise when it comes to choosing your sample, there is a huge chance that you don’t really know how to do it. That’s perfectly normal, especially if this is your first time engaging in quantitative research.

Still, we have made it clear that winging it is not an option, meaning that you need to learn exactly how to determine a good sample size and we are now going to help you out with that.

There are certainly a lot of factors to consider when trying to determine this sample, and your task is to get properly acquainted with those factors, so that you can be sure that you know what you are doing.

Well, that is exactly what I will help you out with right now. In short, I will tell you about those things that you need to take into consideration when determining the sample, which is bound to make things a bit easier for you. So, let us get started right away.

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Think About The Population Size

This should be perfectly logical to everyone doing any type of quantitative research, but let me mention it anyway, as it certainly plays an enormous role in determining the correct sample size.

In few words, the sample size certainly depends on the actual size of the population that you want to research, so to speak. Now, keep in mind that I am not talking about the volume of the entire population, as using that number wouldn’t do you any good.

Instead, I am talking about the size of the target population, so to speak. This number will depend on the actual research you want to do.

For instance, if you’re doing research related to, say, products for seniors, you need to determine the size of the senior population in order to be sure that you’re choosing the right sample. This was only an example, and I suppose that you already know your target audience, meaning that determining this particular volume won’t be difficult.

Consider The Margin Of Error

We all know that errors are practically inevitable in any type of research, and that’s something you should count on. Of course, you should also do your best to reduce those errors to a minimum. That is precisely why you need to consider the margin of error in details and determine how much of a difference you want to allow between the mean number of the population and the mean number of the sample.

If you’re not sure how sample size influences the results, this can help you understand.

Take Standard Deviation Into Account

Standard deviation is another significant factor to take into account when determining the sample size. That’s because you want the results to be as accurate as possible, and this deviation will help you determine how much the responses will vary from each other, as well as from the mean number. Usually, a standard deviation of .5 can help ensure that your sample size is correct.

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