About TOC: Background

Here's how a hypothesis, followed by a grant and intensive training led to a step by step project plan to address the problem of 50% student attrition.

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TOC Slide Presentations

demoThese presentations showcase illustrations of the TOC approach in educational settings. Included are an introduction to TOC by Kathy Suerken, President of TOC for Education (TOCFE), and additional presentations at various international TOC events. View, select and download TOC presentations and TOC Mentors workshop now...

Current Events:

2013 TOCICO International Conference

Holistic Use of TOC in a University PDF

Watch Dr. Umesh Nagarkatte Webinar On TOC for Education Virtual Conference 2012


TOC in the News:

2014 International Achievement Award winners!

demoThe TOCICO is pleased to announce that in recognition for sustained excellence and demonstrated results utilizing TOC in addition to significant contributions to the TOC Community Learn more...


Eli Schragenheim recieves Lifetime Achievement Award!

demoCongratulations to Eli Schragenheim for receiving the Lifetime Achievement award at the 2014 TOCICO International conference! Learn more...


Dr. James Holt receives Lifetime Achievement Award!

demoDr. James Holt, professor at Washington State University, received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2013 TOCICO International Conference in Bad Nauheim, Germany. Learn more...



From Hypothesis to Project Plan

The initiative began in 1999 with the concern of the Department to address student attrition of 50% by absenteeism and failure in the intermediate and college algebra courses to develop a system-wide solution implementing the Theory of Constraints (TOC).

Hypothesis: Theory of Constraints (TOC) can address the problems with student retention in the Department of Mathematics.

With this hypothesis, in 2001, the Department wrote a grant proposal and received a $300,000 Minority Science Engineering Improvement Program (MSEIP) Institutional Grant for 2001-2004 to train grant personnel consisting of Darius Movasseghi, former Chair, PI, Umesh Nagarkatte, Co-PI, Joshua Berenbom in TOC and TP tools, and to carry out other related activities to extend the Calculus reform to lower courses.

In January 2002, Movasseghi, Nagarkatte and Berenbom underwent the formal 2-week training at Avraham Goldratt Institute (AGI), New Haven, CT. At the end of the intensive training, a step by step project plan was developed to address the problem of attrition. This activity allowed a detailed discussion of student and faculty issues and created an open environment conducive to learning and teaching. The faculty buy-in, which was essential to the new initiatives, had thus taken place by the end of the Spring 2002 semester.

The project plan developed in the training has now become a blueprint for all activities in the department and various related activities in the college. The activities taking place in the department are according to the project plan. Read more.