In this paper the concepts of general, target and accessible population are explained in response to misconceptions and controversies associated with them, and the fact that the relationships between them have not been explained in the context of qualitative enquiry in any formal study. These concepts are discussed in this study based on a general scenario. We basically attempt to explain the importance of specifying the general, target and accessible populations in a qualitative study when the study population is large. The study depicts how the research goal, contexts and assumptions can dictate the content and concentration of the target and accessible population in qualitative inquiry. It also poses the sampling implications of our explanations and highlights the stages and levels of what we refer to as population refinement.
General Population, Target Population, Accessible Population, Sampling, Population Refinement
We wish to acknowledge Ramson Etornam Ohene for proofreading our manuscript.
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Recommended APA Citation
Asiamah, N., Mensah, H. K., & Oteng-Abayie, E. (2017). General, Target, and Accessible Population: Demystifying the Concepts for Effective Sampling. The Qualitative Report, 22(6), 1607-1621. https://doi.org/10.46743/2160-3715/2017.2674