# Sampling error

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In statistics, when analyzing collected data, the samples observed differ in such things as means and standard deviations from the population from which the sample is taken. This is **sampling error** and is controlled by ensuring that, as much as possible, the samples taken have no systematic characteristics and are a true random sample from all possible samples. If the observations are a true random sample, statistics can make probability estimates of the sampling error and allow the researcher to estimate what further experiments are necessary to minimize it.

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