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Siti Khuzaimah binti

1Department of Applied Science and Technology, University
Tun Hussein Onn, Malaysia

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Quality means to meet the customers’ requirements.
Customer satisfaction very important to achieve a good in quality. Quality is
important for understanding and improving the quality. To get a better quality,
Total Quality Management (TQM) in the management should be applied. TQM is a
statistical process control which means method of quality control that uses
statistical method to monitor and control a process. This paper aims are to
investigate how TQM can be applied in the classroom which is to be more
specific, using Deming’s 14 points. Even though Deming’s 14 points is only focus on the management and
improving the quality, it is also can be applied in the classroom. Several points of Deming’s principle are
applied in the schools or classroom. By implementing the points of Deming,
teaching and learning processes will be more effective and quality of
teaching will improve if there is a continuous improvement through
implementation of TQM. Furthermore, the students will become more creative and
critical thinkers, physically and mentally ready to meet the challenges a
technological world.


Keywords: Quality,
Total Quality Management
(TQM), Deming’s 14 points.


means meeting the customers’ requirements (Montgomery 2009). It means that
customer satisfaction is very important to achieve a good in quality. It is
also means that how good and useful something is to meet customer requirements.
According to Montgomery (2009), the selection among competing products and
services is become one of the most important consumer decision factors in
quality. Understanding and improving the quality that can lead to business
success, growth and enhanced competitiveness is the important of quality. The modern
definition of quality state that quality is inversely proportional to the variability.
This implies that the decreases the variability in the important
characteristics of a product will lead to the increases the quality of the


are number of researchers who formulated frameworks for Total Quality Management
(TQM) and is the latest one. TQM is considered to be more general 4, 7. According to Mahesh and
Prabhuswamy (2010), TQM is a statistical process control which means to monitor
and control a process, the method of quality control that uses statistical
method will be use. A philosophy of management and leadership that is currently
driving today’s industry is a key management tool in TQM 5. A management methodology in any organization for continuous
improvement in quality and success for long term is a basic characterization of
total quality management (TQM) 6. All
members of an organization take part in improving quality in TQM methodology. Japanese
is the first country that transformed their economy and industry through a
visionary management technique called total quality management (TQM) 2, 3. In fact, management philosophy is a part and parcel of TQM. Yang (2005) stated that a set of
practices in TQM are focus on the regular improvement, fulfilling the
customers’ needs, and lowering rework.


(2004) believe that even though TQM was purposely designed for the industry, it
is also can be applied in education industry especially for bringing
educational reforms. There are also many educators assume that the TQM
principles is only to profit-making organizations but actually, TQM can be
applies as well as to corporations, service organizations, universities, elementary
and secondary schools 3. Higher
education from service departments, to administration, to classrooms, all of it
can benefit from TQM principles. Teaching/learning
environment is the area that can benefit the most 8. There are many quality philosophies that can be found such as
Deming, Crosby, Juran and Feigenbaum that developed TQM and set up the
principles of TQM 2. The purpose
of this study is to apply Total Quality Management (TQM) in the classroom using
Deming’s 14 points. 

Total Quality Management in


Input                                                                Process                                                                 







Figure 1: 
A simple model for industry process (Crawford and Shutler 1999)

1 above shows a simplified model for industry. Raw materials are the input. The
production line is entering and a product is start to produce by the workers.
Next, before it is dispatched to the customer as an output, the product goes
through a quality control (QC). However, the items that cannot pass through the
QC are either reworked or discarded.

Total Quality Management in

Input                                                                 Process







2:  A simple model for schooling process
(Crawford and Shutler 1999)


Figure 2 above shows the schooling process. The students enter
school as an input and a teachers performed a teaching process (Stigler and
Hiebert 2009). Before they enter the next level, the students have to sit for
an examination (QC).


In Deming’s 14 points, the words of learning and curriculum are not
found. This is because, Deming’s 14 points is only focus on the management and
improving the quality. He states that management need to understand the nature
of variation and how to interpret statistical data. But, actually some of
Deming’s terminology needs to be translated or apply to schools as well. For
example, superintendents and principals can be considered management. Employers
or managers are the teachers for the students. Employees are the students
itself and the product is the knowledge that the students acquire. Parents and
society are as the customers 3.
With these translations made, Deming’s 14 points can be applied in the



In this study,
descriptive research method was used. Total Quality Management (TQM) was
applied in the classroom by using Deming’s 14 principles. Deming’s principle is
usually applied to management and people but in this research, Deming’s 14
points was applied to classroom. Some points of Deming were discussed and
applied to schools. Improving students or academic and non-academic morale,
increasing productivity and delivering higher quality services to
customers/students was applied in Deming’s TQM principles.


Results and Discussion

Deming’s 14
principles are based on the assumption that people want to do their best in the
management. Constantly improving the system in which they work is the
management’s job to enable them to do so
3. The teachers believe that examinations are not an end for the
students, but a means to an end. They maintain that it is way more efficient in
curriculum results. Deming model emphasize the Improvement in the curriculum 2. The framework for transforming
classroom using Deming’s 14 principles as follows.


Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and


For schools, the
purpose of the system must be clear and shared by all stakeholders which is
school board members, administrators, teachers, staff, parents, society and
students. For establishing educational aims, customer needs which is parents or
society must be the main focus. To improve the quality of education for all the
students, the aim is must be from the system 3. The system is the main sources. Managers which is the
lecturers must effectively manage and organize the efforts of students. This is
because, in return, they can approach their learning with enthusiasm and in a
participative mood 5

Adopt the new philosophy


Rethinking the
school’s mission and priorities can be implement on the second Deming principle.
The existing methods, mission, priorities and environment can be replaced with
the new teaching and learning strategies which is the success of the students
could be the main goal. A total transformation of the American system of
education may be required 3. Besides that, build quality into the
system with more student-centered approach so that the students can learn to
reach their goals of achievement and learn how to become more efficient 2. For example, implement the
problem-solving exercises which the students can find a solution to solve the
different problems.


Improve constantly and forever the system of production and
service, to improve quality and productivity


Teaching and
learning processes is the focus of improvement efforts in education under
Deming’s principle. Regarding to Henry Levin (19987) and Howard Gardner (1994),
students and educators must redesign the system provide for broad range of
people. For example, handicapped, learning disabled and special needs students.
We need to find ways to make them all successful in school. Before permitting
them to the next level, universal standards of achievement for all students are


Institute training on the job


Regarding to
training on the job, educators is the main indicators as they are the one that
teaching the students.  There are three steps
for training the educators. Firstly, training in the new teaching and learning
processes is a must to increase the learning process in the classroom. Second,
training for the use of new assessment strategies must be provided (Popham,
2010). Third, training in the principles of new management system is also a
must in education industry. For schools, there are continuous professional
development activities for all school’s administrator, teachers and staff 3. Besides that, to make TQM
implementation success, educational institutions should be provided
sophisticated infrastructure, well qualified teaching staff, well qualified
management 4.


Improve leadership


According to both
Peter Senge (2006) and Edwards Deming (1986), altering the system itself is the
improvement of a stable system and not those who work within the system. Deming
states that the main task of leadership is to decrease the amount of variation
in the system and make everyone toward the goal of perfection. In schools, it
means that bringing everyone to the goal of learning for all. A movement toward
excellent and equity can be achieving by removing achievement gaps for all
population groups 3. 


Drive out fear


The students become
passive when they are punished of their wrong answers. To reverse the
situation, whether or not they give the correct answer, the students should be
motivated not being scold. This is also can lead to students afraid to stand
out themselves 2. Fear will create
a hard to overcome the barrier to improvement of any system. Faculty and staff
are often afraid to point out problems when in schools because they afraid of
be blamed or recommendations ignored. School leaders or management need to communicate
well with the staff so that the suggestion given will be valued and rewarded 3. 



Eliminate slogans, exhortations, and targets that demand zero
defects and new levels of productivity


The invention of
slogans, exhortations and targets is assumption that the staff could do better
if they tried harder but actually it is offending rather than inspires them 3. The staff may lead to many causes
of low quality and low productivity in schools but it is due to the system. The
system itself need to be changed not the staff. In schools, educators tend to
use a lot of slogans as a general practice. Meanwhile, the implicit in most
slogans, exhortations and targets may cause to frighten and deter the students
that cannot achieve without acknowledging conscientious attempts, perseverance
and correct methods 2.



Remove barriers that rob people of pride in their work


Every people in
this world want to do a good job. The annual rating or merit system are not
good and critical 3. But regarding
to 2, the annual rating or merit
system should continue by the upper management should pay attention to quality
of teaching instead of the examination results. The teachers should be
observing how they run their classes rather than assessing them on examination


Institute a vigorous program of education and retraining for


Based on 3, the new methods of school based
management, including group dynamics, consensus building and collaborative
styles of decision making must be retained through the principal and the staff.
The improvements in student achievement will create higher levels of
responsibility, not less responsibility should be realized by all the
stakeholders on the school’s team. Meanwhile in 2, criterion for quality is not just on the final examination.
Tests and other indices of student learning also need to considered. There are
many other processes such as portfolios, records of achievement or exhibitions.


Total quality
management (TQM) is one of the beneficial tools in learning and teaching
processes. It can be use whether in primary school, secondary school and
university especially in the classroom even though it is implement in the
manufacturing industries. Hence, the teaching and learning procedure will be
effective and quality of teaching will improve if there is a continuous
improvement through implementation of TQM. To make the implementation of TQM
become more success, all the educational institution should be provided with
good quality of management and qualified staff and teachers. This is because,
management and teaching staff are the most important people that can improve
education industry as well as the students itself. The good at teaching quality
will lead to the well interaction and participation from the students and it
will make a significant difference in students learning. 


Deming’s 14 points
are very useful in the management industries as well as educational industries.
All the principle can be applied in the classroom as discussed above. Furthermore,
most of the educational practitioners are practically using the management
philosophy by Deming as it is can be applied in education industries. W.
Edwards Deming have been suggested a basis for achieving excellence in schools.
Constantly in improving the system is also what Deming’s thought. By
implementing Deming’s 14 points in classroom, the students will become more
creative and critical thinkers, physically and mentally ready to meet the
challenges a technological world. Last but not least, the principles of TQM
should be the first and foremost to fulfill in educational sector.



research paper is made possible through the help and support from everyone
including parents, lecturers, family, classmates, college students that involved
in this research. Especially, please allow me to dedicate my acknowledgement of
gratitude toward the following significant advisors and contributors.


and foremost, I would like to thank Dr. Shuhaida binti Ismail for her most
support and encouragement towards me. She is kindly give guidance and offered
invaluable detailed advices on grammar, organization and the theme of the
paper. Her infinite supports and guidance really encourage me to complete my
technical paper as perfect as it could be.


am also place on record, my sense of gratitude to one and all who, directly or
indirectly have lent their hand in this technical paper.

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