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Topics to Ask Interior Design Colleges
When you have decided on the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of assessing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, especially if the college must be within driving distance from your Meadow Lakes AK home. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will decrease your options also. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other things that you should consider also, including the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are reviewing 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 necessary to make sure that the interior designer program and college that you enroll in has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are exceptional, it might also help when securing financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Meadow Lakes AK employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the School Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of States do mandate 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 several of those States mandating licensing, at least 2 years of work experience may be required as well. So besides providing an outstanding education, the Meadow Lakes AK school you enroll in should also furnish the appropriate instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Alaska or the State where you will be working.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will no doubt need some help in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It may also indicate that the college has a significant network of Meadow Lakes AK business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial aid departments for the Meadow Lakes AK colleges you are evaluating and find out what kind of support they provide. Many of interior design schools offer financial assistance to their incoming students. Various schools offer partial scholarships while others provide help in securing grants or federal student loans. Again it must be stressed that choosing an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Meadow Lakes AK programs you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Meadow Lakes home, go to the campus and sit in on a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few 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 Available that Fit your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer school you enroll in offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Meadow Lakes AK, verify that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.