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Sampling Distributions

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Sampling Distributions

Logo for Sampling Distributions
This applet estimates and plots the sampling distribution of various statistics (i.e. mean, standard deviation, variance). You specify the population distribution, sample size, and statistic. An animated sample from the population is shown and the statistic is plotted. This can be repeated to estimate the sampling distribution.
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Material Type: Simulation
Technical Format: Website, Java Applet
CAUTION: Java Applets may not run on all browsers
Date Added to MERLOT: December 17, 2004
Date Modified in MERLOT: February 07, 2018


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Primary Audience: College General Ed
Mobile Platforms: Not specified at this time
Language: English
Cost Involved: no
Source Code Available: no
Accessibility Information Available: no
Creative Commons: unsure


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Avatar for Beverly Wood
3 years ago

Beverly Wood (Faculty)

I use this as a demonstration during lecture on sampling distribution.  It is a good illustration of several concepts related to sampling distributions.  Although my Intro Stats class doesn't use the SD of other statistics available, there's even wider range for demonstration in a subsequent course.

Used in course

Avatar for Megan Mocko
5 years ago

Megan Mocko (Faculty)

I really like using this applet to demonstrate the sampling distribution of the sample mean. This applet is different from other applets on the same topic because it allows you to have to different sample sizes on the same page. It is very nice to be able to have a comparison between, for example,  the sampling distribution of the sample mean for n =5 and n = 10.

Used in course

Avatar for Matthew Hamilton
12 years ago

Matthew Hamilton (Student)

Very easy to use. Clearly illustrates the relationship between the target
population, the sample, and the sampling distribution. The animation helps
students keep the sampling process more firmly in mind. The user can easily vary
the target population to show that the Central Limit Theorem holds for an
arbitrary target population. Also, it was much easier to use than other applets
I found because you do not have to stop to type in numbers. The user can select
different distributions, sample sizes, and numbers of samples easily with the

I used the applet in my classroom to solidify the concepts I had already
introduced through an actual sampling exercise in which each student brought a
sample of 10 coins to class. We computed the mean of each sample together and I
found it helped to have the applet to refer to the example and vice-versa. This
applet is by far the best I was able to find on this topic, and will certainly
enhance learning and teaching.
Used in course