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Questions to Ask Interior Designer Schools

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When you have decided on the interior design degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of reviewing your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the school needs to be within driving distance from your Kodiak AK residence. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are willing to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your choices also. But selecting the most affordable college or the one that is nearest to home are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other variables that you should look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the program. Below are a few concerns that you may want to ask the schools you are looking at to get those answers as well as others in order to help you compare and subsequently pick the right degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's essential to make sure that the interior designer college and program that you choose has earned accreditation from either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just verify 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 excellent, it might also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, many Kodiak AK employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some States do require that interior designers get 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 college. And in some of those States calling for licensing, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required as well. So aside from providing an exceptional education, the Kodiak AK program you select should also furnish the suitable instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alaska or the State where you will be working.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good sign that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It might also signify that the college has a large network of Kodiak AK business relationships where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after graduation.

Is Financial Assistance Available? Contact the financial assistance departments for the Kodiak AK schools you are looking at and find out what kind of aid they provide. Many of interior designer colleges offer financial aid to their new students. Some colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide support in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that choosing an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.

How Big are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Kodiak AK schools you are considering what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Kodiak home, go to the campus and sit in on a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer college you choose provides classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially important if you plan to continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Kodiak AK, make certain that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.

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