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The University of Southampton

STAT6116 Survey Fundamentals

Module Overview

The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to the design, implementation and use of survey methods in official statistics. One of the pre-requisites for STAT6094

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

To introduce the core survey concepts, including: • Introduction: need for samples, terminology, notation, estimation strategy, survey errors, probability sampling vs nonprobability sampling • Simple random sampling (with and without replacement): probability functions, central limit theorem, bias of estimators, inclusion probabilities, standard errors, finite population correction, variance estimation, confidence intervals, proportions, domains, ratio estimation • Unequal probability sampling: Horvitz-Thompson estimator, design based inference • Stratified sampling: estimation, variance estimation, sample allocation, post-stratification • Dealing with non-response • Introduction to probability and statistical inference

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • choose the appropriate method for sampling from finite populations, including understanding the most common sampling designs.
  • estimate finite population parameters and assess the estimation errors.
  • use probability and statistical inference concepts to draw conclusions from your surveys allowing for uncertainty.
  • use basic weighting and imputation approaches for nonresponse adjustment.


• need for samples • probability sampling vs nonprobability sampling • Simple random sampling • variance estimation, confidence intervals, • Unequal probability sampling • Stratified sampling • Dealing with non-response • probability and statistical inference

Special Features

This module is run as a week-long short course, a component of the MSc in Official Statistics

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

A variety of methods will be used including lectures and workshops/tutorials, mixed in a 5 day course designed for students on release from the workplace. Students are also expected to read wider than the lecture material as part of their individual study, and to critically appraise different approaches.

Independent Study75
Total study time100



MethodPercentage contribution
Examination 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Approved Calculators

Candidates may use calculators in the examination room only as specified by the University and as permitted by the rubric of individual examination papers. The University approved model is Casio FX-570 This may be purchased from any source and no longer needs to carry the University logo.

Books and Stationery equipment

You will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationery items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc.


Where a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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