Dallas Theological Seminary
Other name
MottoTeach Truth. Love Well.
TypeEvangelical seminary
ChancellorMark Bailey
PresidentMark Yarbrough
DeanGeorge Hillman
Academic staff
3909 Swiss Ave
, ,

32°47′37″N 96°46′48″W / 32.793611°N 96.779997°W / 32.793611; -96.779997
Colors  Purple

Dallas Theological Seminary (DTS) is an evangelical theological seminary in Dallas, Texas. It is known for popularizing the theological system of dispensationalism. DTS has campuses in Dallas, Houston, and Washington, D.C., as well as extension sites in Atlanta, Austin, San Antonio, Nashville, Northwest Arkansas, Europe, and Guatemala, and a multilingual online education program. DTS is the largest non-denominational seminary accredited by the Association of Theological Schools.


DTS was founded as Evangelical Theological College in 1924 by Rollin T. Chafer and his brother, Lewis Sperry Chafer, who taught the first class of thirteen students, and William Henry Griffith Thomas,[2] who was to have been the school's first theology professor but died before the first classes began.[3] Their vision was a school where expository Bible preaching was taught simply, and under Chafers' leadership, DTS pioneered one of the first four-year degrees in theology, the Master of Theology (Th.M.). The present location of the school was purchased in 1926 and Doctor of Theology (Th.D.) program was started in 1927.[4] Chafer remained president until his death in 1952.

The seminary had a considerable influence in the fundamentalist movement by training students who established various Bible Colleges and independent fundamentalist churches in the southern United States.[5]

DTS has continually published a quarterly entitled Bibliotheca Sacra initially edited by Rollin T. Chafer, since 1934. In 1983, a complete collection of "Bib Sac" articles was published as a book commemorating fifty years of the journal.[6]

John F. Walvoord took over as president in 1952 after Chafer's death in 1952. In 1974, DTS added a two-year Master of Arts (MA) program in biblical studies, and in 1982, a two-year program in Christian Education was begun. In addition to these, a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program was opened in 1980. Walvoord retired as DTS president in 1986.[7]

From 1986 to 1994, Donald K. Campbell served as president of DTS. During his tenure, DTS opened a three-year MA program in Biblical Counseling and a two-year MA program in Biblical exegesis and linguistics.[7]

Chuck Swindoll served as president of the seminary from 1994 to 2001. Mark Bailey followed, serving as president from 2001 to 2020.[7] Under Bailey's tenure, the seminary added a two-year MA program in media and communication, a two-year MA in Christian leadership, a Spanish D.Min. program, and a multi-lingual online education program. He was succeeded by Mark Yarbrough in 2020.

As of Spring 2014, DTS had over 15,000 alumni serving in various ministerial capacities in 97 countries worldwide.[8]


DTS was first accredited in 1944 by the Board of Regents, State Education Department of the University of the State of New York of Albany.[9] After that institution stopped accrediting institutions outside of New York, DTS was accredited in 1969 by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and in 1994 by the Association of Theological Schools in the United States and Canada.[10]

The school is also a member of the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI), the Evangelical Training Association (ETA), the Jerusalem University College, and the Institute of Theological Studies (ITS).[10]


1993 reprint of Chafer's Systematic Theology

DTS is known as a center of modern dispensational teaching[11][12][13][14][15] due to Dr. Chafer's development of a systematic theology which approaches the Bible with a "premillennial, dispensational interpretation of the Scriptures."[2] Systematic Theology, his eight-volume work describing this approach, was first published in 1948 and is still a required textbook for some courses at DTS.[2]

Notable theological beliefs of the school include: premillennialism, dispensationalism, and Biblical inerrancy. The school considers itself non-denominational within Protestantism, and offers classes in all 66 books of the Protestant Bible.[10]

Notable people

In a 2009 study conducted by LifeWay Research, Protestant pastors named preachers who had most influenced them. Three DTS alumni were among the top ten: Chuck Swindoll ('63), founder of radio broadcast Insight for Living; David Jeremiah ('67), founder of Turning Point Radio and Television Ministries; and Andy Stanley ('85), founder of North Point Ministries.[16][17] Other notable people associated with the seminary include:


Current and former faculty


  1. ^ a b "DTS Statistics". Association of Theological Schools. Retrieved 1 December 2023.
  2. ^ a b c "DTS Library". Dallas Theological Seminary. Retrieved 21 November 2012.
  3. ^ Randall Herbert Balmer, Encyclopedia of Evangelicalism: Revised and expanded edition, Baylor University Press, USA, 2004, p. 202
  4. ^ DTS Archived 2017-05-07 at the Wayback Machine Historical Milestones.
  5. ^ Samuel S. Hill, The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture: Volume 1: Religion, University of North Carolina Press, USA, 2006, p. 77
  6. ^ Fifty Years of Bib Sac listing at Amazon.com
  7. ^ a b c DTS Archived 2017-05-07 at the Wayback Machine A Brief History.
  8. ^ "DTS Statistics". Dallas Theological Seminary. Retrieved 28 July 2015.
  9. ^ Hannah, John. An Uncommon Union: Dallas Theological Seminary and American Evangelicalism (Zondervan, 2009), page 130.
  10. ^ a b c DTS Accreditation
  11. ^ The Founders Archived 2012-07-31 at archive.today. Summer 1992.
  12. ^ Baptist Bible College May 1999. Archived December 9, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ Second Blessing Models of Sanctification and Early Dallas Dispensationalism Archived 2007-02-07 at the Wayback Machine. The Master's Seminary Journal, Spring 2004.
  14. ^ Dallas Observer Archived 2012-07-28 at the Wayback Machine. February 9, 2006
  15. ^ Monergism.com October 2005.
  16. ^ Phillips, Rob. "LifeWay Research: Protestant pastors name Graham most influential living preacher". LifeWay Research. Archived from the original on 2012-09-06.
  17. ^ Alumni Office. "Top Ten Most Influential Living Preachers List includes Three DTS Alumni". DTS.[dead link]
  18. ^ Thamel, Pete (March 25, 2021). "Oral Roberts' Sweet 16 run is coach's favorite movie come to life". Yahoo Sports. Retrieved March 25, 2021.
  19. ^ "Brian Steven Rosner" (PDF). Ridley College. 2019. Retrieved 21 December 2023.
  20. ^ "A Tribute to Dr. Roy B. Zuck (1932–2013)". Dallas Theological Seminary. Retrieved April 7, 2024.