Total Quality Management in Education

Total Quality Management in Education

Total Quality Management in Education

Total Quality Management in Education


This book is written for managers in higher education as well as for school principals and superintendants in schools.Total Quality Management (TQM) is a philosophy and a methodology that is widely used in business, and increasingly in education, to manage change or other processes. With the pressure for change and quality in education never more acute, this is an ideal time for readers in education to acquaint themselves with TQM.Revised and updated, this is a new edition of one of the classic guides to management in education. It introduces the key concepts of TQM in the education context, discusses organizational, leadership and teamwork issues, the tools and techniques of TQM, and will help educators develop a framework for quality management in their school, college, department or university.


When the first edition of my book appeared in 1993, quality was a new subject. My prefaces to the first and second editions of this book were aimed at persuading sceptical educationalists to embrace total quality management. I wanted to extol the virtues of TQM and to introduce the world of education to the then somewhat alien concept of quality assurance.

In the new millennium there is less need to make this call to arms. Quality is nowadays, quite rightly, a high priority and has become almost the very stuff of the education debate. But while the novelty may have worn off, the need to understand how to assure quality in education remains. It is an interesting question whether quality in education is really understood.

So while many of us may feel that we are now all part of the quality movement, there is still a huge gap between the rhetoric and real understanding. The philosophies of the pioneers of the quality movement, Deming, Juran and Crosby, have not been translated very accurately into the practice of education. Do we really believe that quality is about improving students' learning, empowering teachers, supporting teamwork, providing leadership or that in pursuit of quality we are driving out fear fear in our institutions?

Too often today quality has become synonymous with the latest government stricture on standards, examination success, school performance, league tables or part of the latest party political pronouncements on education before an election. I do not say this with any sense of cynicism. Rather I sense it is the way of the world. Once the message of quality had become popularized, there was always a danger of it becoming vulgarized.

One wonders what W Edward Deming, the famous exponent of TQM who introduced the quality message to the Japanese after World War II,

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