Total Quality Management in Higher Education Case Study: Quality in Practice at University College of Borås

Total Quality Management in Higher Education

TQM at University College of Boras






The study highlights the general principle of the TQM through a case study in the university of Boras




Chapter 1: Introduction:4


1.2 Quality System at University College of Boras:5

1.3 Research Area:6

1.4 Purpose of the Thesis:7

1.5 Thesis Structure:7

Chapter 2: Research Methodology:9

2.1 Induction and Deduction:9

2.2 Quality Research:9

2.3 Reliability and Validity:10

2.4 Data Collection:11

2.5 Aims and Objectives:12

2.6 Research Question:12

2.7 Survey and Questionnaire:13

Chapter 3: Summary Literature Review:15

3.1 Quality of Higher Education:16

Chapter 4: Limitation:19




The aim of the thesis is to shed light on the principles of TQM and identify the approach that can increase the effectiveness and efficiency of the academic institution. The study is based upon a case study of a university called “University College of Boras” that will explore the quality management of the administrative structure, departments and academic area. The study incorporates evaluation and analysis of the present quality work of the university. Moreover, the TQM principles are compared with the issues of the university in order to shed light on the weakness and strength of the institution. 

This dissertation will include a complete thorough analysis of the TQM of the university and identify the problem statements along with recommendation to improve the quality. The data will be collected through primary data collection method by conducting surveys and interviews whereas secondary data is collected by studying the preexisting articles, books and literature. 


Chapter 1: Introduction:

The Higher Education institutions are rapidly increasing methods and technologies in order to improve the quality of the academic institutions. The administrators of UCB has launched quality administration sector in order to improve the standard of their education system according to the principles of the Total Quality Management (Oakland, 2014). 

Higher Training Institutions (HEIs) has implemented the TQM principles, and it has reinforced the dimension of quality of institutions and subsequent education. The university has decided to conduct an evaluation of the quality work that we cover in the thesis therefore; we benchmark the assessment with the TQM philosophy. 

This chapter therefore, defines the background of the thesis, research area, purpose of thesis and structure of the thesis. Background:


At the start of the twentieth century a rapid development in higher vocational education was started. According to the statistics a rapid increment in the assort of students and scholars has occurred by 1940. From the year 1975 until 2000, university colleges were established as to increase the accessibility of the higher education in Sweden.

The higher education in Sweden emphasize on three basic attributes that incorporates education, research and cooperation with the society and rest of the culture. Moreover, the government of Sweden is also making efforts in the field of higher education and funding the higher education to almost 46%. (Hoang, 2010)

The University Colleges at Sweden are those institutes that do not offer the Research Education but they do offer degrees related to Masters and basic bachelors. 

The University College of Boras was found in the year 1977. According to the current data, UCB has more than 12500 students along with more than 800 employees. The campus of UCB is located at the heart of the Boras. The university consists of six different schools that offer several different multi discipline programs. The departments of University College of Boras are narrated as follows:Library and Information ScienceBusiness and InformaticsFashion and TextilesBehavioral Sciences and Teacher EducationEngineeringHealth Care and Caring Science

In addition to these departments, the university also has two other departments that are called a library and learning resources and central administration center. Figure 1 in the appendix shows the map of the University College of Boras. According to the University College of Boras their vision is to become an institute of a postgraduate education and declare itself as a Professional University instead of being a University College. 

1.2 Quality System at University College of Boras:

The University College of Boras is making efforts since the year 1990 by establishing the first version of the quality management in the year 1992. The quality program initiated by the University College of Boras along with the definition of its culture is studies in the dissertation. Moreover, the UCB board including the chairperson, staff and prefects are concerned about improving their quality work. The program of UCB that was launched in the year 1995 is based upon long-term goals that are for the development of the quality within different aspect of operations with the three-year perspective.

According to the statistics, the evaluation of the improvement was conducted in the year 1998. The board decided that the evaluation would help them to develop a new strategy and quality program for the year 2000 onwards.  The analysis of the quality starts by evaluating the performance of the teachers that includes a simple framework that assist in carrying out the analysis of all the attributes of the activities. 

Moreover, the UCB has a tool named Policy for kvalitetsarbete vid Högskolan I Borås/Policy that is considered as a guidance tool. In order to check and maintain the quality the UCB has a quality assurance system that includes the quality council, committees, chairperson and principal.

1.3 Research Area:

Education is one of the most important service industries in the commercial public sector. According to Babbar (1995) the quality of education is forms the permanent security and wealth of the societies and their subsequent people. In the last two decades, the quality of education and high standard has evolved to be a major concern for the education institutions and governments. Therefore, the explicit quality evaluation demand is increasing in the era today that has also increased the assurance process. Moreover, the funds that are launched by the government to the education sector also demand a quality assessment in order to ensure that education in the schools and universities are maintaining their standards. 

According to Nina and Maureen (2006), the quality of education will also help the university in increasing their number of students and provides an extra edge in the competitive market. Therefore, the HEIs are continuously seeking for the options that can improve the effectiveness of their high quality in education 

The quality of the education has therefore, evolved a new concept termed as “Total Quality Management” (TQM). The phenomenon applied to several to the business and industry is now implemented in the higher education institution in order to provide high quality standards. 

A brief investigation of TQM standards demonstrates the extent to which it could be actualized in HEIs, also numerous framework of TQM are appropriate with the work of HEIs as an aspect of the quality audit and assessment. TQM keeps on being considered by many people as inadmissible intend to the HEIs, still numerous colleges and universities apply TQM as an instrument to enhance the nature of higher education. For example, U.S., U.K., Australia, and New Zealand organizations have received TQM in their advanced education, and there are some effective stories related to the situation. 


1.4 Purpose of the Thesis:

The main goal of this dissertation is about an evaluation of the quality work of the College of Borås. Actually, the Committee for Evaluation and Self-evaluation has pointed out this work to get a general picture of the current quality work of college. This board was designated by the College Board to do an inside evaluation of the quality work of the college every year. This dissertation thus focuses on shedding light on the present aspect of the quality of the University College of Boras.

The dissertation is based upon the assessment and evaluation that is conducted in the shape of a TQM approach and the quality arrangement of this college. This implies that there will be a few examinations about how this establishment works with quality, then discoveries will be in the hope to measure up with a particular methodology to discover the shortcomings and fortifies of the quality arrangement of this college. This assessment and evaluation as benchmarking with a TQM methodology will prompt highlighting the general standards of TQM. It will additionally propel the inquiry of how this methodology might be use to enhance the nature of a scholarly organization, which is the largely goal of this work. 

Overall, the aim is to provide a complete documentation in the connection of quality and a specific TQM approach, which will encourage this college school to fulfill its requirements of stakeholders, including administration board, students, staff, authorities, distinctive national unions to accomplish the college’s objectives and vision

1.5 Thesis Structure:

The study will incorporate the following structure: 

Section 1: Introduction: This section will begin with a few foundations about the work. It will proceed by presenting exploration region, and consistently will clarify the motivation behind the proposal. At last, it will portray delimitations and postulation structure. 

Section 2: Theoretical Frame of References: In this section, the point is about some Primary definitions. At that point, it will proceed by presenting a TQM methodology and portrayal of its comprising parts, and inevitably, a model will be created for the usage of this specific methodology. 

Part 3: Methods: The purpose of this section is about portrayal of the exploration technique. At that point, there will be some discourse about whether this examination is qualitative or quantitative. This part will proceed by a few dialogs about the dependability and legitimacy of this work. Finally, we will try to gather information and data. 

Section 4: University College of Borås: This section will begin by a prologue to the UCB, furthermore it will proceed by exploring the quality arrangement of this college school. The section will explore the history along with the present condition of the polices of the UCB for managing quality of education

Section 5: Analysis and examination: This section will start by investigating the statistics gathered by the examination based upon data collected from past section. The study will address the issues found from the examination. In the following parts of dissertation, suggestions and recommendations for development is depicted based upon the data collected. This part is focused around what it has been talked about in hypothetical case of reference and dissection of discoveries

Section 6: Conclusion: This part would be the end of the dissertation that will define the entire work. Thus, the entire work will be audited unequivocally and the last conclusion will be portrayed at the end.

Chapter 2: Research Methodology:

The research methodology is termed as hermeneutic methodology that includes study of preexisting literature and result of the research.  The research utilize of doing an examination, based upon induction, deduction and abduction, two most normal ones will be illuminated here and we will attempt to propel the one they have utilized.

2.1 Induction and Deduction:


Induction strategy alludes to arriving at from general to particular in examination work. Indeed, encounters assume imperative part in outline of inductive technique. Utilizing estimations and quantitative routines is normal is impelling. Induction begins with and hazy issue. At that point a exhaustive perspective of the vague matter will be made, Bengtsson (1995). Conclusion strategy calls attention to arriving at from general standards or speculations to finishes of each singular wonder, Patel and Davidsson (1994). Actually, finding implies that the scientist moves to from accessible writing and present issues to outcome come about particular occasion. For this situation, one theory examination carried out amid the test studies. The primary objective of finding is dissecting nature of the organization items and after that contrasting the dissection and the hypothesis. Given that, this examination is as careful investigation, and on the off chance that studies the most well-known philosophy is snatching, as indicated by Alvesson and Sköldberg (1994), this procedure will be utilized for this proposition work. Along these lines, the observational application of TQM will be produced and the hypothesis will be balanced 

2.2 Quality Research:

The research methodology, of this study incorporates both qualitative and quantitative methods. Indeed, the qualitative and quantitative examination relies upon the quality and status of the issue. The base of qualitative examination is on study things and non-evaluated information like considerations and standards. For the most part, the center would be on diverse methods for data gathering to get a deeper understanding of the study things. Qualitative exploration accentuates on meetings, meeting, furthermore perception. Because of utilizing these methodologies, a profound seeing about the matter will be picked up, Marshall and Rossman (2006). Truth be told, qualitative exploration trust and apply four strategies to collect and accumulate the information and data. These four systems are support in area, immediate perception, profound meeting, furthermore examination of archives and material society. These strategies sort out the fundamental part of the examination. A few auxiliary and exceptional routines for information gathering improve them. Four picking the strategies for exploration and applying viably, we utilize Brantlinger’s helpful clarification of seven sections of discriminating explanations for qualitative request. The primary part alludes to analyst’s perspectives of the way of examination. The second part demonstrates scientist’s area relative to members. Third component is about the course of my research.

The most imperative divisions are fourth and fifth parts which identify with the goals of the examination and principle crowd of study. The sixth part brings up the analyst’s political area. Finally, seventh part alludes to the perspective of the scientist about herself and the members towards the activity of association. Suppositions made in these seven sorts diagram how the exceptional exploration routines are viewed as and executed amid a study. Quantitative examination concentrates on gathering an extensive number of information things that might be evaluated. The quantitative examination gives data that could be measurable and conclusions and results could be picked up on the premise of these. In the examination and study working, utilizing both qualitative and quantitative exploration strategies might be connected. The qualitative and quantitative routines finish one another in a compelling way. Hence, we need to utilize and dissect the results delivered by both qualitative and quantitative routines in the work of examination. In any case, this work was qualitative and the analysts depend on the current records from of boards of trustees and committees. 

2.3 Reliability and Validity:

The significance of validity is to outline questionnaires defining our inquiries and collect the subsequent answers of respondent in the own perspective. To accomplish high validity, inquiries questions must be arranged so that they are in concurrence with the overview’s point and what is planned to be measured will be measured and nothing more, Bell (1995). Dependability clarifies how estimations strategies oppose against the undesirable impacts. In most cases, dependability of meetings and surveys relies on upon individual status, solace elements, also detailing variables, Bell (1995). A viable approach to achieve high unwavering quality in meeting is picking proper inquiries, enough time designated to each one inquiry, and a nature’s domain. In addition, we must attempt to dodge of blunders in making poll, because these slips can diminish the unwavering quality of inquiries in meeting. Picking faultless and justifiable inquiries in data get-together stage makes a difference us in expanding unwavering quality and prompts picking up viable data and information identified with utilization, Ringer (1995). Notwithstanding, in this work the creators have attempted to build the legitimacy and dependability of the work taking into account the accompanying certainties. The inquiries for meetings have planned ahead of time and the creators’ director has checked them. Moreover, these inquiries were given to the interviewees few days before the gathering to give enough time to them, and they chose interviewees were designated in the top position, they were the seats of distinctive advisory groups. In the gathering session, enough time has been allotted for each one inquiry. At last, after talks with the scientists have gathered the answers and gave answers were offered once again to the respondents for last approbation of what it has been talked about. 

2.4 Data Collection:

In the venture of information and data accumulation, there are two gatherings of information known as primary and secondary data collection method. Primary information is identified with information that is picked up by distinctive methods, for example, meetings and surveys. The secondary data collections are writing studies, daily paper, magazines, related articles, and web. 

Primary data might be gathered in three ways: perceptions, presumption analysis, and meetings, Dahström (1996). Utilizing meetings and perception is more regular than presumption examination. Contingent upon the information required, the inquiries in the meetings are distinctive. The inquiries in the questionnaire must be constrained into few attributes for replying. Qualitative overviews are suitable with open inquiries and result questions. For this situation, planning an inquiry for composing the own elucidation about each one inquiry can prompt better results

Qualitative research utilizes and trusts on profound question more than alternate techniques for information accumulation.” Kahlan and Cannell clarify questioning as “a discussion with a reason”. A qualitative meeting is described on its width rather than its profundity. In actuality, Talking with varies as far as a previous development and in the extension the interviewee has in offering an explanation to inquiries. Meetings are isolated into three gatherings as per “Patton”. These gatherings are the casual conversational meeting, the general meeting aide methodology, and the institutionalized open-finished meeting. Qualitative in profundity meeting are like discussion as opposed to formal systems with perceived answers. For this situation, the questioner presents a few truths and basic issues to uncover the member’s perspectives, yet then again regards how the member structures the answers. Also, systematization in making inquiries must be considered when numerous interviewees are took an interest in the meeting or the clarification and examination of the results is basic for questioner, Marshall and Rossman (2006).

2.5 Aims and Objectives:

The aim of the research is to:

1. Prove that the Total Quality Management concepts increase the quality of HE institutions

2. Distinguish the difficulties in TQM implementation in HE Institutions.

3. Identify the TQM of the University College of Boras

4. Compare the quality of the education at UCB with eth TQM principles

2.6 Research Question:

The study utilizes descriptive methodology, which focuses around analysis of the writing, pre-existing research and perceptions related to TQM for advanced education organizations and supporting the implementation of the TQM ideas in advanced education foundations in UCB. Thus, the study is based upon answering the following questions:What is TQM Model of Higher Education?What is the TQM of the University College of Boras?What are the issues that resist TQM in UCB?


2.7 Survey and Questionnaire:

Questionnaire For the Quality CouncilWhat are the vision and goals of the UBC?What approach does UBC adopt in order to achieve these golas?How far is the UBC from achieving these goals?What are the main concerns of the quality council?What are the main responsibilities of the quality council of UBC?What is meant by quality effort and how do you achieve it?How can UBC improve their student’s services?Does UBC cooperate with the trade or industry zone?How can UBC increase the rate of effectiveness and use the resources efficiently?What is the quality model for Higher education?For whom is UBC working?What measures are used to analyze quality improvement of UBC?


Questionnaire For Committee For Sustainable DevelopmentHow does UCB carry out its actions to reach sustainable growth?How far is this UBC from sustainable growth objectives? (What are the barriers?)How sustainable growth can help this university college to progress the quality of its higher education?What is the definition of quality in higher education?For whom is this university college working?



Questionnaire for Committee For Evaluation and Self-AssessmentWhat are the strategic goals of this university college?What are the approaches of the university college to reach these goals?How far is this university college from those goals? (What are the main barriers?)What are the main tasks of the Self-assessment and Evaluation Committee, and how does it work?Why does the university college assess the quality work?Who are assessing the quality work, except the self-assessment and evaluation committee?How often do they try to do the assessment of the quality work in this university college?Is this institution co-operating with quality assurances and accreditation agencies? If possible, please name and explain to what extent they co-operate?How do they measure the quality improvement in this university college? (By satisfied

Stakeholders, by benchmarking, by the number of educated students, by the number of applicants, by the number of publications, is it qualitative or quantitative, etc.)What is the definition of quality in higher education?What kind of assessment would you prefer to use in the quality work, why? (Self-assessment,external audit, benchmarking, etc)



Chapter 3: Summary Literature Review:

In light of these truths, Hellsten and Klefsjö (2000, pp. 238-44) have characterized TQM as something significantly more than center qualities, and to them it is an administration framework. A framework in the feeling of Deming, “A system of reliant parts that cooperate to attempt to fulfill the point of the framework”, Deming (1994, p.50), which one of the parts is center qualities. Two different parts are strategies and devices that help the center qualities. Actually, definition gave by Hellsten and Klefsjö stresses that the idea of TQM, as a entire thought, is a blend of qualities, strategies and devices, where they have jointed to achieve higher client fulfillment with less assets utilization, see figure 2. This entire idea could be taken to mean as an administration framework. 

In executing the TQM in an association or assembling organization, administration is the fundamental issue. The top administration must consider the objectives of the organization, those moves that must make set up, quality monetarily, and assets, (for example, administration assets) that are important for attaining the vision of the organization, in all parts of value. Henceforth, for enhancing the quality of an association, duty and information of the authority is the first step. After that, a society must be existed focused around some center qualities, which are Customer focusDecisions based on factsProcess focusContinuous improvementCommitment of everybody 

Quality Function Deployment (QFD) is a strategy that relentlessly distinguishes client needs also desires on administration particulars and outlines parameter and exchanges these needs to administration qualities and extra to the administration process. Additionally, it is an effective philosophy for correspondence and interest. For this situation, it needs gather parts to work together with a specific end goal to accomplish a crucial premise for nonstop and coordinated administration change. To attain and execute QFD, we need to take after four steps. Initially is doing a business sector examination in request to comprehend client necessities and desires. Second is distinguishing and at the same time evaluating the same time the contenders’ capability to satisfy clients’ expectations. Third perceives key achievement elements of association’s item available. Finally, the fourth step is exchanging these key variables into item and procedure qualities in association with configuration, change, and production. The goal of QFD is to decipher the desires of clients into item and procedure details by consistently allowing the needs be repeated at each level of item change process. 

As per Bunney and Dale (1997, pp. 183–189) for utilizing and applying Quality Management Instruments (quality control devices) and systems, the a few notes must be thought seriously about by every association to attain great comes about, these some of notes are: 

• Identifying phases of change, presenting suitable Qmts for suitable capacity, considering accessible asset are essential elements in AQMT. Distinguishment of the synthesis of proper apparatuses for particular application, alongside satisfactory preparing is crucial for execution of Qmts. 

• To overcome troubles with respect to the status change process, Qmts ought to be used to unravel generally characterized issues. 

• Understanding of devices inside appropriate gathering of individuals identifying with their positions will cause QMT to turn into a piece of day-by-day exercises inside the association. 

• Providing satisfactory preparing to the right individuals at the perfect time, alongside decently characterized Qmts is key for fruitful change 

3.1 Quality of Higher Education:


Principle concern in this work is about meaning of nature of advanced education that has turned out to be much more troublesome as opposed to assembling items and administrations. There is no question about the point that quality assumes a critical part in today has advanced education, Owlia and Aspinwall (1997, pp. 527-543). Feigenbaum (1994, pp. 83-4) believes competition between nations the nature of instruction is the primary and essential variable, and this is on the grounds that nature of items and administrations is characterized by the activity, choice making, and considerations of supervisors, architects, laborers, and educators in the quality work. Like other organizations, in today’s business sector, instruction and specifically advanced education has entered to business rivalry, which is because of practical strengths, Seymour (1992). Freeman accepts that this rival is firstly due to the change of the worldwide training business, and is because of the lessening of the legislative supports that empower associations to search for some other fiscal sources, Freeman (1993). Thusly, recognizing what the quality means in advanced education as the first period of value work appears to be fundamental. Notwithstanding, still there is nobody interesting definition about the nature of advanced education, there are many of these clarifications that in some way or another have industry viewpoint that in “imperceptible”

Besides, Cheng and Tam (1997) recommend, “Instruction quality is a somewhat obscure and disputable idea” and Pounder (1999) contends that quality is a “famously questionable term”. Overall, some different masters in the connection of value in advanced education want to redress those definitions originating from industry and utilize the overhauled variant of definition of value in advanced education. Case in point Campell and Rozsnayi (2002, pp. 19–20), have characterized the idea of nature of advanced education in a few routes identified with industry:  Quality as perfection: this definition is thought to be the customary scholastic perspective that holds as its objective to be the best. 

Quality as zero blunders: this is characterized most effectively in mass industry in which item particulars could be made in point of interest, and institutionalized estimations of uniform items can demonstrate adjustment to them. As the results of advanced education, the graduates, are not anticipated that will be indistinguishable, this perspective is not generally thought to be material in advanced education. Quality as wellness for purposes: this methodology obliges that the item or administration has congruity with client needs, prerequisites, or cravings. 

Quality as change: this idea centers solidly on the learners: the better the advanced education foundation, the more it attains the objective of enabling understudies with particular abilities, learning and state of mind that empower them to live and work in the information society. Quality as limit: characterizing an edge for quality intends to set certain standards and criteria. Any organization that achieves these standards and criteria is esteemed to be of value. 

Quality as worth for cash: The thought of responsibility is fundamental to this meaning of quality with responsibility being focused around the requirement for restriction out in the open consumption

Quality as upgrade or change: This idea stresses the quest for nonstop change and is predicated on the idea that accomplishing quality is focal to the scholarly ethos and that it is scholastics themselves who know best what quality is some time or another. Notwithstanding of these distinctive definitions on nature of training, nature of yield and notoriety in scholarly research are well on the way to be esteemed in Heis. Nonetheless, quality frameworks adjusted from business and industry operations need to be reoriented, and re installed for advanced education conditions to turn the center from the administration based to the training based practices, as indicated by Mizikaci (2006). 

Tribus (1994) accepts that the destinations of each school, or college, ought to be to give every understudy, chances to enhance in learning, know how, astuteness, and character. The principal idea empowers understudies to comprehend, and the second one encourages them to do, in like manner the third one empowers understudies to set necessities, lastly the character gives the probability for them to coordinate, to drive forward and to wind up regarded and trusted parts of society.


Chapter 4: Limitation:

The fundamental confinement for this venture was about discovering some applicable reports with respect to the quality work of the college school of Borås, since established reports were distributed in Swedish. Truth be told, discovering significant English reports was the primary sympathy toward analysts. On the other hand, an interpreter was delegated to help the scientists in this setting, because of some confinements for her; she could not proceed until the end of the work. Hence, the creators have to be confined to the accessible information and talks with keeping in mind the end goal to demonstrate the officially existing quality framework in this college. In addition, considering time/credit casing of this proposition work, there was an understanding for the number of meetings for this work 




Oakland, J. S. (2014). Total Quality Management and Operational Excellence: Text with Cases. Routledge. 

Hoang, D. T., Igel, B., & Laosirihongthong, T. (2010). Total quality management (TQM) strategy and organisational characteristics: Evidence from a recent WTO member. Total quality management, 21(9), 931-951. 

Wang, C. H., Chen, K. Y., & Chen, S. C. (2012). Total quality management, market orientation and hotel performance: the moderating effects of external environmental factors.&nbs

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