What Is DST in Data Structure?


Larry Thompson

Data Structure is an essential concept in the field of computer science and plays a crucial role in organizing and managing data efficiently. One of the commonly used data structures is DST (Data Structure and Algorithm) which stands for Dynamic Set Table.

What is DST?

DST is an abstract data type that stores a collection of unique elements with no specific order. It provides efficient methods for inserting, deleting, and searching elements in the set.

Key Features of DST:

  • Dynamic: DST can dynamically resize itself to accommodate new elements as they are added.
  • Set: DST stores a collection of unique elements where duplicates are not allowed.
  • Table: DST uses a table-like structure to store and manage elements.

Operations on DST:

DST supports various operations that allow us to manipulate the elements efficiently. Some of the commonly used operations include:

  • Insertion: Adds a new element to the set.
  • Deletion: Removes an element from the set.
  • Search: Finds whether a given element exists in the set or not.
  • Merge: Combines two sets into one, eliminating duplicates if any.

Implementation of DST:

DST can be implemented using various data structures such as arrays, linked lists, hash tables, or trees. Each implementation has its advantages and disadvantages based on factors like efficiency, memory usage, and ease of implementation.

An Example Scenario:

To better understand DST, let’s consider an example scenario. Suppose we have a DST that stores a collection of student names.

Initially, the DST is empty. As new students join, their names are inserted into the DST using the insertion operation.

If a student leaves, their name is deleted from the DST using the deletion operation. When searching for a particular student’s name, the search operation can quickly determine whether the name exists in the DST or not.


DST is a powerful data structure that allows efficient management of dynamic sets. It provides operations like insertion, deletion, and search to manipulate elements effectively. Understanding and implementing DST can greatly enhance your ability to organize and process data efficiently in various applications.

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