AP American Government Chapter 7 Vocabulary
How people think or feel about particular things. Defined simply, public opinion refers to how people think or feel about particular things. For example, a study by political scientist Terry M. Moe analyzed public opinion concerning whether the government should provide parents with publicly funded grants, or vouchers, that they can apply toward tuition at private schools.
A survey of public opinion. If properly conducted, a survey of public opinion popularly called a poll can capture the opinions of 300 million citizens by interviewing as few as 1,500 of them.
Method of selecting from a population in which each person has an equal probability of being selected. No poll, whatever it ask and however worded, can provide us with a reasonably accurate measure of how people think or feel unless the persons polled are a random sample of the entire population, meaning that any given voter or adult has an equal chance of being interviewed. Sampling error:
The difference between the results of random samples taken at the same time. For example, if one random sample shows that 70 percent of all Americans approve of the way the president is handling his job, and another random sample taken at the same time shows that 65 percent do, the sampling error is 5 percent. Exit polls:
Polls based on interviews conducted on Election Day with randomly selected voters. Since 1952 every major poll has in fact picked the winner of the presidential election. Likewise, exit polls, interviews with randomly selected voters conducted at polling places on election day in a representative sample of voting districts, have proven quite accurate.
Process by which background traits influence one’s political ...
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