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Sampling Methods

  1. Bernard C. Beins

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0814

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Beins, B. C. 2010. Sampling Methods. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. Ithaca College

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Psychologists usually test groups of research participants rather than individuals. One goal in creating groups is to select research samples that allow the investigator to generalize research results to the entire population. When results generalize to the population, they are said to show external validity. However, psychological research often involves undergraduate students, so questions arise as to whether the results of the research will generalize beyond the specific sample used in a study. Consequently, sampling methods used to identify research participants are of interest to scientists who study human behavior.


  • experimental methods;
  • research design;
  • random sampling;
  • sampling methods