This paper proposes and describes an effective utilization of particle swarm optimization ( PSO) to train a Takagi-Sugeno ( TS)-type fuzzy controller. Performance evaluation of the proposed fuzzy training method using the obtained simulation results is provided with two samples of highly nonlinear systems: a continuous stirred tank reactor (CSTR) and a Van der Pol ( VDP) oscillator. The superiority of the proposed learning technique is that there is no need for a partial derivative with respect to the parameter for learning. This fuzzy learning technique is suitable for real-time implementation, especially if the system model is unknown and a supervised training cannot be run. In this study, all parameters of the controller are optimized with PSO in order to prove that a fuzzy controller trained by PSO exhibits a good control performance. (c) 2007, ISA. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.