1. An overview article that provides general information about particular topics, techniques or problems. Frequently, a survey is an explanatory article to a usually larger group of topics. As a rule, its author refers to previous publications and collects their results systematically; in contrast to the review author he does, however, not indicate the procedure in which, or according to which priorities, literature was researched and collected. There is a distinct tendency towards an explaining and fundamental approach in the survey as opposed to the review with its clearly more comparative and evaluating approach.
2. A gathering of a sample of data considered to be representative of a whole.