Commencement 2023

Email Communication

Coming Soon…

Preparation for Graduation

Graduation Process

Details related to the graduation process such as the graduation application, eligibility, coursework deadlines, and reference and church letter materials can be found here.

For more information regarding the graduation process please email the Registrar’s Office (registrar@dts.edu).

Test of Biblical and Theological Knowledge (TBTK)

The Test of Biblical and Theological Knowledge (TBTK) is a required test for all master’s degree graduates. (DMin, DEdMin, EdD, PhD, and CGS graduates do not need to take the exam.) The final transcript showing the conferral of the student’s degree will not be released by DTS until this obligation is met.

The TBTK is a timed, online exam with a 75-minute limit. Graduates should complete the TBTK at the end of their final semester of study. An email will be sent to the graduates with the necessary web links before graduation. Please check and make sure that your email address will accept messages sent from DTS.

Please contact Institutional Research by phone (214-887-5200) or by email (irdept@dts.edu) with any questions.

Regalia & Attire

Graduates should dress in appropriate professional, NOT casual, attire for commencement.

Under their regalia, men should wear a dress shirt, dark (navy, charcoal, or black) dress slacks (not jeans), dark socks, and dark dress shoes. Ties are optional, and coats are not suggested.

Women should dress appropriate to the occasion. A dress, or dark dress slacks or a skirt paired with with a blouse, or some other comparable combination is suggested for women. Dress sandals are allowed for women only. Coats are not suggested.

To maintain consistency and the proper decorum, graduates should not wear any external decoration on the outside of their regalia. International students are welcome to wear native attire under their regalia as appropriate and consistent with the regalia.

NOTE: Graduates wear regalia at both the Commencement Chapel and Commencement Ceremony, so please plan your regalia pickup accordingly.

Commencement regalia will be available for pick-up at the Bookstore on:

Friday, May 5, 9:00am – 4:00pm
Monday, May 8, 9:00am – 4:00pm
Tuesday, May 9, 9:00am – 4:00pm
Wednesday, May 10, 9:00am – 4:00pm
Thursday, May 11, 9:00am – 12:00pm
Friday, May 12, 2:00pm – 6:00pm

Graduates should make every effort to pick up regalia prior to the commencement events. Regalia not picked up by noon on Thursday, May 11, will be delivered to the Commencement Chapel venue and can be picked up there the morning of Friday, May 12 prior to Commencement Chapel. After Commencement Chapel, the regalia will be brought back to the Bookstore and will be available for pick up until 6:00pm. Regalia not picked up by 6:00pm on Friday will be available at Prestonwood the morning of the Commencement Ceremony.

Questions concerning regalia may be addressed to the Bookstore.

Hoods for ThM, STM, and DMin graduates are trimmed in scarlet, which represents the discipline of theology; DEdMin hoods are light blue, representing the discipline of education; hoods for MA graduates are trimmed in white, which represents arts and letters; hoods for the PhD graduates are trimmed in blue, which represents the discipline of philosophy. All hoods have the Seminary’s school colors, royal purple and gold on the inside. Make sure you have the appropriately colored hood. Contact the Registrar’s Office if your hood is the incorrect color. Certificate students do not wear hoods since they are not degree graduates.

Please leave purses and personal items (including cell phones – which MUST be OFF) either locked in your car or with a guest or friend not participating in the ceremony.

Graduation Memorabilia

Graduation announcements, class rings, diploma frames, and other items are available for purchase through the DTS Bookstore. Staff at the Bookstore would be happy assist you with any questions you may have concerning graduation memorabilia. Visit them on the DTS-Dallas campus or email them at bookstore@dts.edu.

Class Gift

For many years the graduating class has collected money as a gift for the benefit of future students at DTS.

The 2023 graduating class has the wonderful opportunity to “pass it back” to current students still in the process of completing their seminary training by contributing to the new graduating class scholarship fund.

More information regarding this scholarship fund coming soon.

Faculty Excellence Voting

Each year, the graduating class chooses two members of the faculty to receive an award in “Teaching Excellence”.

Voting will open Wednesday, February 1 – Friday, February 24.

Graduation Events

Visiting Campus

Friday, May 12, 2023 from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm

The DTS campus will be open for graduates, their families, and friends who may wish to visit the seminary. This is an opportunity to visit the DTS-Dallas campus as campus will be closed Saturday, May 13, the day of commencement.

Commencement Chapel

Commencement Chapel is a special chapel service for graduates and their friends and families.

Friday, May 12, 2023
10:00 am - 11:30 am
Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship Church (Worship Center)
Speaker: Dr. Lanier Burns, Distinguished Professor of Systematic Theology and Research Professor of Theological Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary

Unfortunately, only the Commencement Ceremony at Prestonwood Baptist Church will be available to watch via livestream.

The Commencement Chapel will be recorded and posted to https://voice.dts.edu/chapel/ approximately one week after the chapel service.

Graduates may sit with friends and family members at Commencement Chapel. Unlike at the Commencement Ceremony, there will not be a reserved seating section for graduates.

Unfortunately, childcare will not be available at Commencement events. Children are welcome to attend both Commencement Chapel and the Commencement ceremony, however we ask that crying or restless children be taken out of the auditoriums during the services as a courtesy to others.

Yes. Photos and videos of the Commencement Chapel will be available for download free of charge. Contact the Alumni office for more information.

Texas BBQ with Faculty

Friday, May 12, 2023
5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
DTS-Dallas Campus

A BBQ dinner will be served by the faculty to all graduating students with their families and friends on the Dallas campus. This event is designed to give graduates and their families an opportunity to visit with one another and meet the faculty and staff. Dress is casual.

Meal tickets are $5 per person (ages 5 and under are free) and will be available for purchase online. A limited number of tickets will be available for purchase at the Bookstore on the evening of the BBQ. 

BBQ Tickets are not yet available for purchase. More information to come regarding the purchasing of BBQ Tickets.

Graduation Ceremony

Saturday, May 13, 2023
10:00 am - 12:30 pm
Prestonwood Baptist Church
Speaker: Rev. Jonathan Evans, Associate Pastor of NextGen Ministry at Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship, Chaplain of the Dallas Cowboys, Co-Chaplain of the Dallas Mavericks

Instructions for Graduates

The Commencement Ceremony is at Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano (6801 W. Park Blvd.).  Graduates should plan to be there promptly at 8:15 a.m. and meet in the choir loft located in the worship center for instructions and rehearsal.

During this time, graduates will receive instructions for lineup, robing, and walking the stage. . Signs and staff will be available to help direct graduates. It is important that graduates arrive promptly and pay close attention to instructions during this time.

After the ceremony, graduates will be released to return their regalia and meet with family members and guests.

Absolutely! We highly encourage graduates from all locations and their families to join us in Dallas for Commencement.

International students or guests wishing to attend graduation may come to Dallas as a tourist with no special visa requirement (depending on the country from which he or she is traveling from). Please consult the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Department of State for detailed information regarding visa requirements and travel guidelines for specific countries of origin.  

Graduates should arrive promptly to Prestonwood Baptist Church by 8:15 AM on Saturday, May 13. Graduates will receive instructions for the commencement ceremony at this time. Participation in the instructions is mandatory. Graduates should not be late! Enough time should be allowed to not only arrive at the church by 8:15, but to be in place for instructions by 8:15.

Guests may arrive as early as two hours before the events, but should plan to arrive at least 45 minutes early to ensure good seating.

Yes. Photos and videos of the Commencement chapel and the Commencement ceremony will be available for download free of charge. Contact the Alumni office for more information.

Unfortunately, childcare will not be available at Commencement events. Children are welcome to attend both Commencement Chapel and the Commencement ceremony, however we ask that crying or restless children be taken out of the auditoriums during the services as a courtesy to others.

You will be seated with others in your degree program, in order, by last name. DTS staff will assist you in the finding your place in the line of march and your appropriate seat in the sanctuary.

Yes! For Spanish and Mandarin translation services available for the Commencement ceremony, please click here.

Post-Graduation

Diplomas

All those who participate in the Commencement ceremony will receive an empty diploma tube when crossing the stage, not their actual diploma. Diplomas will be mailed to graduates from the Registrar’s Office following Commencement.

Diplomas will not be handed out at graduation. All diplomas will be mailed to graduates after commencement. Questions regarding diplomas should be directed to the Registrar’s Office.

Your diploma and transcript will be mailed to you according to your address on file within several weeks of the end of the last summer session. This should be some time in September.

Final transcripts can be requested through the alumni website.

Diplomas are original, single-copy documents and duplicates cannot be made. If there is an error, however, a new diploma can be issued by request through the Registrar’s Office.

Career Services

The Office of Career Services offers a lifetime of support for DTS graduates and provides consultation to graduating students, alumni, and ministries throughout the hiring process. Their services include assistance with resume development, interviewing, and compensation guidelines. The Career Services office also assists ministries as they search for candidates and maintains a database of ministry opportunities through their Ministry Opportunities Listing. For more information, please visit the DTS Career Services website.