Question

Each of the following surveys has bias. Identify the type of bias. (a) A television survey that gives 900 phone numbers for viewers to call with their vote. Each call costs $2.00. (b) An employer distributes a survey to her 450 employees asking them how many hours each week, on average, they surf the Internet during business hour. Three of the employees complete the survey. (c) A question on a survey asks, "Do you favor or oppose a minor increase in property tax to ensure fair salaries for teachers and properly equipped school buildings?" (d) A researcher conducting a poll about national politics sends a survey to a random sample of subscribers to Time magazine.

Solution

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A used sampling method is appropriate when the sampling method doesn't introduce any bias into the sample.

There are three ways in which to include bias into a sample:

  • Undercoverage bias or sampling bias will exclude part of the population. This is typical for convenience samples.
  • Response bias will use a method that gives different values from the true value. For example, biased questions could affect the responses of people.
  • Nonresponse bias occurs when we don't have data for everybody in the sample. For example, voluntary response tends to lead to nonresponse bias.

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