Suppose a company has 500 employees and wishes to select a simple random sample of 25. Which would be the more appropriate way of doing so?

  1. Choose 25 pages of the employee directory, and take the first name from each page

  2. Number the employees 1 to 500 in random order and take the first 25 names on the list.

I find both methods to be viable since they both allow every employee to have an equal chance of being selected. But apparently there's only 1 correct answer.

  • $\begingroup$ You should include your thoughts. $\endgroup$ – Em. Jan 27 '16 at 1:51

Option 2 is completely random, while option 1 has biases. Hence, option 2 would be the better choice for a simple random sample.

One bias for example is that an employee that has a name that starts with AA has virtually 100% chance of being chosen (top of 1st page) while an employee AB has virtually a 0% chance of being chosen (2nd from the top of 1st page).


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