How to Pick the Best Interior Design College near Globe Arizona
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Globe AZ, it's time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial spaces, it's essential that you obtain the right training to put your natural abilities to work. And since several states do require that interior designers become licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need training to pass a licensing exam also. So it's very important that you perform the appropriate research in order to analyze and compare each school that you are looking at prior to making your ultimate choice. But where do you start? Many potential students will launch their research by searching for interior design schools near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are important variables when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation must be considered as well. We will cover those topics and other important questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class choices are offered.
Interior Decoration vs Interior Design
Many people mistake interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The main distinction between them is the level of training required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. However, doing business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make living or work spaces attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Globe AZ can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with public or commercial spaces, designers often focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the main consideration.
There are numerous areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer must learn, such as color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. They have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Globe AZ interior designers implement a wide variety of skills that help bring about their final designs.
Interior Designer Degrees
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to receive the training needed to begin your new profession in Globe AZ. Your selection will no doubt be motivated by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to devote to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, make sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be discussed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum amount of training needed to enter the field. They take approximately 2 years to complete and programs are offered at numerous Arizona vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can typically obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that deliver more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the business required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These two year programs provide advanced training in design after attaining a Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer options in specialized majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. A number of students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs differ in length but are usually completed in 3 to 5 years.
In order to work professionally and use the title of "Interior Designer", many states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing exam.
Interior Design Online Programs
For anyone wishing' to attend classes in the convenience of their Globe AZ homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Attending classes online can be an excellent solution for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make attending classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For a number of students online colleges may be the only option if no interior design schools are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as study materials or commuting may be reduced or eliminated also. Just make sure that the program you pick is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the right alternative for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Designer Schools
When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the college must be within commuting distance from your Globe AZ residence. Of course if you are interested in attending an online school, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your choices also. But picking the least expensive school or the one that is closest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you should look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a few concerns that you may want to address with the programs you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's essential to make sure that the interior designer program and school that you enroll in has been accredited by either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. 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 offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Globe AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the School Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, 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 as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those States requiring licensing, 2 or more years of professional experience may be required as well. So besides providing an exceptional education, the Globe AZ program you choose should also provide the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ exam and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be working.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will no doubt want some help in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good sign that the school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It may also signify that the college has a large network of Globe AZ business relationships where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Globe AZ colleges you are reviewing and find out what kind of assistance they offer. A number of interior design colleges offer financial assistance to their incoming students. Various schools offer partial scholarships while others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a school that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Globe AZ programs you are considering what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Globe home, go to the campus and monitor a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak 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 Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer school you choose offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Globe AZ, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the process is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.
Enroll in the Best Globe Interior Design School
Selecting the ideal interior designer school is a crucial first step toward starting your career in this creative and fulfilling profession. Locating a school where you will obtain your education and develop your talents in a particular area of study is a difficult job no matter what field you have selected. As with any undertaking to receive an advanced education, there are many points to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, check that the program and design college are both accredited and highly respected in the field. However it is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with quality training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Globe Arizona.