What are some of the different types of sampling methods that are available to the auditor? How does the auditor decide which method to use? How will the different methods affect the audit?


When performing audit, the auditor has the choice to go for statistical sampling or non-statistical sampling or both of them. Both sampling methods are efficient in providing the auditor with sufficient appropriate audit evidence about the financial statements and both audit sampling methods require that the auditor practice his judgment in planning and executing his plan and come out with the results. Sampling and non-sampling risks are applicable to both sampling methods. Non-statistical sampling may be as effective as statistical sampling and vice versa (Boynton, 2006).

In statistical sampling, the auditor may choose random sampling techniques, block sampling techniques, or systematic sampling techniques which all of them are a result of the use of the laws of probability that enable the auditor to control sampling risk. On the other hand, the auditor who uses non-statistical sampling must use professional judgment, derived basically from his/her own experience, to evaluate sampling risk (Boynton, 2006).

Statistical and non-statistical sampling methods do not affect audit and the auditor is using the same framework for planning and performing whatever sample used. Also, the choice of statistical or non-statistical sampling method does not affect the evidence achieved or the auditor response to the potential errors found in sample because, at the end, the auditor is practicing his/her professional judgment while either sampling (Boynton, 2006).



Boynton, W. C., & Johnson, R. N. (2006). Modern auditing: Assurance services and the integrity of financial reporting. (8th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Louwers, T., Ramsay, R., Sinason, D., & Stawser, J. R.. (2007). Auditing and assurance services. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Phoenix accountant (2012) retrieved from https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary2/content/eReader.aspx

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