CCE Theses and Dissertations


The Effect of Total Quality Management on Faculty Productivity

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Steven R. Terrell

Committee Member

Thomas W. MacFarland

Committee Member

George K. Fornshell


This project examined the implementation of a Total Quality Management (TQM) process to enhance Professional Development at a New England College. The goals of the study were: [1) to improve the quality of academic instruction (Excellence). [2] to improve the quality of faculty responsiveness to student concerns (Access). [3] to improve the quality of the faculty development process (Innovation). A search of the literature produced a number of studies showing the need for quality improvement in faculty productivity on a national scale. A cross-functional team composed of faculty, staff and administrators made up the TQM process group. A systemic evaluation model of disciplined inquiry was used to collect data for decision making. The purpose of the TQM group was to improve the faculty development process, to educate faculty in terms of alternate strategies for improving services and to enhance professional competencies. The Team used formal TQM tools such as fishbone, check sheet and histogram in its process. The TQM process group chose a feedback mechanism for measuring progress towards attainment of goals and objectives. This progress measurement compared baseline data with outcome data in a number of key areas of concern. The study showed that an ongoing process of continuous improvement in these key areas did affect student retention rate, course evaluations and student service satisfaction rate. There were two measures of baseline information: the Cause and Effect diagram and the student conference scheduling check sheet. These were not designed to directly test the hypothesis. There were four outcome measures that provided information for testing the thesis of improved faculty productivity through a TQM system improvement and assessment process. Two of these measures, the Student Services Survey and the Phone calls returned study, showed statistically significant differences in pre and post TQM groups. A third study, the Student Retention Study, showed an improvement of7% in the number of program dropouts after the intervention. The Evaluation forms (Course and Instructor) showed an improvement of six percent for the post TQM group but this was not found to be statistically significant.

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