Data Collection

Scheme of work: Year 12 A-Level: Applied: Statistics: Data Collection

Prerequisite Knowledge

  • Infer properties of populations or distributions from a sample while knowing the limitations of sampling
  • Apply statistics to describe a population
  • Design a questionnaire without bias
  • Understand the difference between quantitative and qualitative data
  • Calculate the mean, mode and median from a frequency table.

Success Criteria

  • Understand and use the terms population and sample.
  • Use samples to make informal inferences about the population
  • Understand and use sampling techniques, including simple random sampling and opportunity sampling.
  • Select or critique sampling techniques in the context of solving a statistical problem, including the understanding that different samples can lead to different conclusions about the population

Key Concepts

  • Students need a good understanding of the keywords:
  • Population, census, sample, sampling unit, sampling frame, simple random sampling, stratified, systematic, quota, opportunity (convenience) sampling, and how to apply these within a real-world problem.
  • Students could practise applying these keywords as an introduction to the large dataset.
  • When comparing the different types of sampling, students should consider each method’s advantages and disadvantages regarding cost, time, complexity and other real-world implications.

Common Misconceptions

  • Students often struggle to explain how to design a sampling frame within the context of the problem.
  • When asked to describe how to select a random sample, students sometimes write lengthy responses that lack specificity. Instead, answers should focus on designing the sampling frame, such as assigning each population member a unique ID.
  • While most students can calculate a stratified sample, they sometimes struggle to describe why a stratified sample within the context of the question.
  • Students often struggle to describe the difference between a quota and stratified sampling, mainly when each is more suited to the context of the question.
  • Students often quote textbook definitions to define terms such as population, sample, stratified, and randomisation when answering exam-style questions. However, they should instead explain how these definitions related to the real-life situation stated in the context of the question.

Data Collection Resources

Mr Mathematics Blog

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A-Level Scheme of work: Edexcel A-Level Mathematics Year 2: Pure 2: 3D Vectors

Parametric Equations

Edexcel A-Level Mathematics Year 2: Pure 2: Parametric Equations


Edexcel A-Level Mathematics Year 2: Pure 2: Radians