Thanks for coming back for Part II of veteran school communicator Gerri Allen’s tips on how to do research — and why it’s so important for school leaders to make decisions after having listened to a cross-section of constituents, about 75 percent of which don’t have school-aged children.
In Part I, Gerri touched on some primary and secondary methods of gathering research, including focus groups and online surveys. In Part II, she dives into scientific research, the kind based on random samples that can be generalized to a wider population. (“I marvel that talking to 384 randomly selected people can tell you what 100,000 people are thinking, but it does – with 95 percent accuracy,” Gerri said.)
Surveys astound me, too. Let’s get to it! – KYM
Here’s Part II from Gerri –
Conducting a random sample survey
Simple random sample surveys are ones in which a portion (or sample) of the population is drawn so that each person has an equal chance of being selected. Samples chosen in a random fashion can be considered unbiased because no one member in the population has any more chance of being selected than any other member. For this reason, random samples are said to be representative of the population from which they were drawn. These surveys are often referred to as scientific polls—like the ones conducted for political candidates and issues in the recent election.