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What to Ask Interior Designer Programs

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When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of reviewing your school options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the campus needs to be within commuting distance from your Meridianville AL residence. Of course if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will decrease your options also. But selecting the cheapest school or the one that is closest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should look at as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the school. Following are a list of questions that you may want to address with the programs you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you assess and subsequently choose the ideal degree program.

Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It's essential to verify that the interior design school and program that you select has earned accreditation from either a regional or national agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their teachers and programs. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are excellent, it may also help when securing financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Meridianville AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.

Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination as well as a degree from an accredited school. And in several of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required also. So in addition to providing an outstanding education, the Meridianville AL college you select should also furnish the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ examination and fulfill the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will no doubt need some help in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design profession and its graduates are sought after. It might also indicate that the college has a sizable network of Meridianville AL business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.

Is Financial Assistance Provided? Contact the financial assistance offices for the Meridianville AL colleges you are evaluating and ask what kind of support they offer. Many of interior design schools provide financial assistance to their new students. Some colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide support in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that choosing an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a college that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Small are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive little individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Meridianville AL colleges you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Meridianville home, visit the campus and attend a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make sure that the interior designer college you select offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Meridianville AL, make certain that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.

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