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Topics to Ask Interior Designer Schools
After you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the school needs to be within commuting distance from your Tillmans Corner AL home. Obviously if you are interested in attending a school online, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices also. But choosing the cheapest college or the one that is nearest to home are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you need to consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the school. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the colleges you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others to help you assess and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior designer program and college that you choose has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone an extensive assessment of their teachers and programs. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program 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 training are outstanding, it may also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Tillmans Corner AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited school. And in some of those States calling for licensing, a minimum of 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So besides providing an exceptional education, the Tillmans Corner AL college you choose should also provide the appropriate instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and fulfill the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior designer certification, you will probably need some support in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design profession and its students are in demand. It may also signify that the school has a substantial network of Tillmans Corner AL business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Tillmans Corner AL colleges you are looking at and find out what type of assistance they offer. A number of interior designer schools offer financial aid to their new students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in acquiring grants or federal student loans. Again it must be stressed that choosing an accredited college is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Tillmans Corner AL schools you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Tillmans Corner home, go to the campus and monitor a few classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer school you enroll in provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Tillmans Corner AL, verify 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 process is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.