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Robertsdale Alabama interior designed family room

Once you have selected the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of analyzing your college options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the college must be within commuting distance from your Robertsdale AL residence. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will decrease your options as well. But selecting the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to home are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you need to look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to ask the colleges you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you assess and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It's essential to confirm that the interior designer school and program that you select has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a demanding evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are exceptional, it may also help when applying for financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Robertsdale AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.

Does the School Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required as well. So besides furnishing an excellent education, the Robertsdale AL college you select should also provide the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.

What is the College's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good sign that the school and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design trade and its students are sought after. It might also signify that the college has a substantial network of Robertsdale AL business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the Robertsdale AL colleges you are evaluating and find out what type of assistance they provide. Many of interior design schools provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide assistance in obtaining federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited school is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a college that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Robertsdale AL schools you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Robertsdale home, go to the school and sit in on a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior design school you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly significant if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Robertsdale AL, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the process is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.

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