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About this Quick Course

The IHI Quick Course: Better Quality Through Better Measurement is a hands-on workshop that will walk you through the steps needed to successfully build a quality measurement plan.

Throughout this one day course you'll get tips for selecting measures, specifying operational definitions and building data collection plans. You'll also learn conceptual and statistical approaches to understanding variation in your data. You'll leave with a firm grasp of how to create and interpret run charts and how to decide which control chart is most appropriate for your data.

Dates and Locations

What you'll learn

At the end of this Quick Course you'll be able to:

  • Determine why you are measuring (for improvement, judgment, or research)
  • Review the key milestones in the Quality Measurement Journey
  • Develop measures, operational definitions, and data collection plans that are practical and support organizational objectives
  • Understand variation conceptually
  • Understand variation statistically with run and Shewhart (control) charts
  • Link measurement to your improvement strategies​

This workshop carries a maximum of 6.5 continuing education credits for physicians, pharmacists, and nurses.

Workshop Content


  • Welcome and orientation to the workshop
  • Measurement self-assessment tool, determining your current knowledge about quality measurement   
  • What is your motivation for measuring?
    • Improvement?
    • Judgment or accountability?
    • Research?
  • Starting the Quality Measurement Journey (QMJ) with guidance from Dr. W. Edwards Deming
  • Overview of the milestones in the QMJ
  • Introduction to the workshop case study
  • Building an aim statement
  • Moving from a concept to a measure (mapping your measures)
  • Developing clear operational definitions for your measures
  • Data collection strategies
    • Stratification
    • Sampling (probability and non-probability approaches)
    • Frequency of data collection
    • Duration of data collection
  • Organizing individual measures into a strategic dashboard
  • Understanding variation conceptually
    • Dr. Walter Shewhart’s contribution
    • Common versus special causes of variation
    • Making the appropriate management decision with data


  • Making the appropriate management decision with common and special causes
  • Understanding variation statistically
    • Run chart construction and interpretation
    • Introduction to Shewhart (control) charts
    • Shewhart charts for variables and attributes data
    • Selecting the most appropriate chart for your measures
  • Linking measurement to improvement


Lloyd_Robert_Thumb.jpg Robert Lloyd, PhD, is Vice President at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI).  Dr. Lloyd provides leadership in the areas of performance improvement strategies, statistical process control methods, development of strategic dashboards and capacity building for quality improvement. He also serves as faculty for various IHI initiatives and demonstration projects in the US and abroad. Before joining IHI, Dr. Lloyd served as the Corporate Director of Quality Resource Services for Advocate Health Care, Director of Quality Measurement for Lutheran General Health System, Director of the AHA/HRET Quality Measurement and Management Program, and spent ten years with the Hospital Association of Pennsylvania in various leadership roles. He is author of numerous articles, book chapters, reports, and has written two of the leading books on measuring quality in health care settings.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​