selection bias

  

Definition

Statistical error that causes a bias in the sampling portion of an experiment. The error causes one sampling group to be selected more often than other groups included in the experiment. This may produce an inaccurate conclusion if the selection bias is not identified. For example, if an experiment only selects people of a certain race with similar characteristics and excludes any group that deviates from these elements. "The students at the University had to start their experiment over because they discovered a selection bias in the species gathered."

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