How to Select an Interior Designer Degree Program Glennallen 99588
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Glennallen AK, it’s time to begin the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential interiors, it’s essential that you obtain the proper training to put your talents to work. And since a number of states do require that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing exam also. So it’s very important that you do the appropriate research in order to evaluate and compare each college that you are considering prior to making your ultimate choice. But just where do you start? Many potential students will kick off their research by looking for schools near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are relevant factors when making a decision, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be considered also. We will cover those topics and other important questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are interested in later in this article. But before we do, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class alternatives are offered.
Interior Design compared to Interior Decoration
Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The main distinction between the two is the level of training required. Any person can do business in Glennallen AK as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior spaces. However, working as an interior designer requires formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or residential areas attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad areas that an interior designer can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction in Alaska. They can design basically any room of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with public or commercial spaces, designers often focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a Glennallen designer needs to learn, for example lighting, color shemes, furniture and acoustics. Designers have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui concepts, interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Degrees
There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to acquire the training necessary to begin your new career. Your selection will no doubt be influenced by your career objectives in Glennallen as well as the money and time that you have to invest in your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, make certain to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in some states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are short descriptions 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 about 2 years to complete and programs are offered at many community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can normally obtain entry level jobs in Glennallen as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that supply more comprehensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the technical and creative facets of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a graduating student in order to obtain an entry level job in Alaska as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs supply advanced training in design after acquiring the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer choices in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mainly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs vary in length but are usually completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.
Online Interior Design Schools
For those who wish to attend classes in the comfort of their Glennallen homes, there are accredited online interior design programs. Studying online can be a good option for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make attending classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For some students online schools may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Additional costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be minimized or eliminated also. Just be sure that the college you select is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also acquire accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design college may be the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Once you have decided on the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the college must be within commuting distance from your Glennallen home. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your choices also. But choosing the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your house 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 college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the programs you are considering to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you compare and subsequently pick the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s essential to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you choose has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous assessment of their programs and teachers. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are exceptional, it may also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Glennallen employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several 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 school. And in some of those states mandating licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required also. Therefore besides providing an outstanding education, the college you enroll in should also furnish the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Alaska or the state where you will be employed.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will probably want some help in finding your first job in Glennallen. Ask the programs that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also signify that the school has a large network of business contacts where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial aid offices for the schools you are reviewing and ask what kind of support they provide in 99588. Many of Alaska interior designer colleges offer financial aid to their incoming students. Some schools offer partial scholarships and others provide support in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the programs you are looking at what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Glennallen home, visit the school and monitor 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 philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer college you choose offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly significant if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Glennallen, verify 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 procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Pick the Right Interior Designer Program Glennallen AKPicking 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 receive your training and cultivate your skills in a specific area of study is a challenging task regardless of what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to recieve a higher education, there are a number of things to think about before selecting a course, program or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the profession. But it is still essential that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare schools so that you can make the right final selection. And with quality training and your drive to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer.