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Questions to Ask Interior Design Programs
Now that you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the campus must be within commuting distance from your New Kingman Butler AZ home. Naturally if you have decided on attending a school online, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will decrease your choices also. But picking the least expensive college or the one that is closest to home are not the best ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you should look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the program. Following are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you examine and ultimately pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design School Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the interior design program and school that you select has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just make sure 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 verify that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are exceptional, it might also help when applying for financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many New Kingman Butler AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges 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 necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited program. And in several of those States calling for licensing, two or more years of professional experience may be required also. So besides providing an exceptional education, the New Kingman Butler AZ program you select should also provide the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior design certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first position. Ask the schools that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good sign that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design profession and its graduates are in demand. It could also indicate that the school has a substantial network of New Kingman Butler AZ business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Contact the financial assistance offices for the New Kingman Butler AZ colleges you are looking at and find out what type of assistance they offer. A number of interior designer programs offer financial assistance to their new students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships and others provide support in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited college is important for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a college that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Ask the New Kingman Butler AZ programs you are reviewing what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your New Kingman Butler home, visit the college and attend a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior designer program you select provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near New Kingman Butler AZ, make sure that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an option also. Finally, check what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.