[Air-L] Text Sample Size?

Peter Timusk ptimusk at sympatico.ca
Mon Aug 17 19:16:15 PDT 2009

I have no idea of samples of words. I do know samples of persons.

A sample of persons below say 300 is suspect especially if not random.  
I am reading a few books in Internet studies that argue against  
previous studies by claiming the sample is too small and not random.

You can claim somethings with samples as small as 12 but the more  
items you want to measure the larger your sample should be IMHO.

A sample is best random. Some would argue a sample is only a sample if  
random. You can sample randomly and still choose roughly equal men and  

Can you randomize your samples in some ways?

The Canadian Internet Use Survey has had a sample of more than 20,000  

All that I am saying is probably to be found in most undergraduate  
statistics books.

You would need  to ask text analysts about how to sample texts.

I follow gender and computers so would be interested in your results  
or what you are looking for.


On 17-Aug-09, at 8:29 PM, Karyn Hollis wrote:

> Hi All--
>   This is a newbie question.  I am planning to do a quantitative data
>   analysis to study blogs for gender differences in CMC.  Are there  
> any
>   rules for the size of samples?  Would comparing male to female blog
>   texts of a total of 50,000 words each be enough to claim statistical
>   significance for any differences I find?
>   Thanks for any advice,
>   Karyn Hollis
>   Villanova University

Peter Timusk statistical computer programmer
ptimusk at sympatico.ca
address 701-151 Parkdale Avenue
Ottawa, Ontario Canada K1Y 4V8
Phone 613-729-8328

May all your numbers be quality numbers... even if they are only  
average numbers.

More information about the Air-L mailing list