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Getting Started Guide: Opinion Polls: Home

Where to find public opinion poll information

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"Public opinion polling can provide a fairly exact analysis of the distribution of opinions on almost any issue within a given population. Assuming that the proper questions are asked, polling can reveal something about the intensity with which opinions are held, the reasons for these opinions, and the probability that the issues have been discussed with others. Polling can occasionally reveal whether the people holding an opinion can be thought of as constituting a cohesive group. However, survey findings do not provide much information about the opinion leaders who may have played an important part in developing the opinion (although this information may be obtained through subgroup analysis, provided that the original sample is large enough to ensure that reports of opinion leaders are statistically reliable to a reasonable degree)."

Excerpt from "public opinion." Encyclopaedia Britannica. Britannica Academic. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., 2016. Web. 09 Feb. 2016. <http://0-academic.eb.com.read.cnu.edu/EBchecked/topic/482436/public-opinion>

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