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Criswell College

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Criswell College

Criswell College
Statue of W. A. Criswell at Criswell College
Former names
Criswell Bible Institute; Criswell Center for Biblical Studies
Established 1970
Type Private
Affiliation Southern Baptists of Texas Convention
President Dr. Barry K. Creamer
Location Dallas, Texas, USA
Campus Urban/Suburban
Colors Navy, Gray, Yellow
Website .edu.criswellwww

Criswell College is a Christian liberal arts college and divinity school in Old East Dallas, Texas. Criswell College's stated mission is to provide ministerial and professional higher education for men and women preparing to serve as Christian leaders throughout society, while maintaining an institutional commitment to biblical inerrancy.[1]


The college was founded in 1970 and first classes began on January 12, 1971. It was previously known as “Criswell Bible Institute” and later as “Criswell Center for Biblical Studies.” The college is named after its founder, W. A. Criswell, long-time dispensationalist[2] pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas. Dr. James Bryant was the founding Dean.

Texas oilman, conservative activist, and First Baptist Church of Dallas member H.L. Hunt provided much of the financial support establishing Criswell College.

The college has been affiliated with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention since 2003.[3] The college offers Diplomas, Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts and Master of Divinity degrees.


Past presidents include Criswell, H. Leo Eddleman, Paige Patterson, Richard Melick, C. Richard Wells, and Jerry A. Johnson. Barry Creamer is the seventh and current president.[4]


In 2012, the Board of Trustees approved plans for an expansion of the undergraduate curriculum and relocation.[5] This curriculum expansion now includes undergraduate majors such as Philosophy, Politics, & Economics and Psychology.[6] Relocation plans were eventually redirected toward renovation of the current campus.[7]


In 1985, Criswell was first accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).[8]

In June 2007, the college was placed on probation for one year.[9]

In December 2010, the college was denied reaffirmation and given a warning for one year to make improvements in areas including in educational programs, effectiveness, administration, and general education competencies.[10]

The school is currently fully accredited through SACSCOC with a renewal date of 2020.


Former president Jerry Johnson resigned from the school in 2008 citing "philosophical differences with the chancellor and trustee leadership about the future of Criswell College."[11][12] He returned in 2010[13] after the school separated from First Baptist Church of Dallas despite a 2008 resolution forbidding selling of the school for at least five years.[14]

Pasche Institute

The Pasche Institute was started by Jim R. Sibley and Todd Bradley as a Master of Arts degree program for Jewish studies. Sibley was named the first director of the Pasche Institute in 2006. Dr. Lamar E. Cooper, Sr. is the current director of the institute.

Notable alumni


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  4. ^ President | Criswell College
  5. ^ Rebirth of a Legacy | Criswell College
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External links

  • Criswell College
  • Pasche Institute
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