Introduction to power and sample size in multilevel models



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In this report we give a brief introduction to the multilevel models, provide a brief summary of the need for using the multilevel model, discuss the assumptions underlying use of multilevel models, and present by means of example the necessary steps involved in model building. This introduction is followed by a discussion of power and sample size determination in multilevel designs. Some formulae are discussed to provide insight into the design aspects that are most influential in terms of power and calculation of standard errors. Finally we conclude by discussing and reviewing the simulation study performed by Maas and Hox (2005) about the influence of different sample sizes at individual as well as group level on the accuracy of the estimates (regression coefficients and variances) and their standard errors.