How to Pick an Interior Designer College Holy Cross 99602
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design college near Holy Cross AK, it’s time to start the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial interiors, it’s essential that you receive the appropriate training to put your natural abilities to work. And since a number of states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing exam also. So it’s crucial that you carry out the proper research so that you can analyze and compare each program that you are considering prior to making your final choice. But where do you begin? Many prospective students will kick off their research by looking for schools near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are important issues when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation should be taken into account as well. We will discuss those topics and other important questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But before we do, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training options are available.
Interior Decoration and Interior Design
Often people mistake interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The key distinction between the two is the amount of education required. Any person can work in Holy Cross AK as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, working as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in a number of states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make living or work spaces attractive as well as functional. On many projects they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are two general categories that an interior designer may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes in Alaska. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When working on commercial or public areas, designers normally concentrate primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. As an example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might focus more on functionality over looks as the main concern.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a Holy Cross designer must learn, for example color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. Designers have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to incorporating Feng shui principles, interior designers employ a wide range of skills that help bring about their final creations.
Interior Design Degree Options
There are 4 degree options available in interior design to obtain the training required to start your new career. Your choice will no doubt be influenced by your career goals in Holy Cross in addition to the time and money that you have to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you opt to enroll in, make sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in some states. More will be discussed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of training needed to enter the field. They take about 2 years to complete and programs are available at many community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level positions in Holy Cross as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that deliver more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the trade required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level position in Alaska as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs provide advanced training in design after acquiring the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer options in specialized majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs differ 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 required before a candidate can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Designer Degree Programs
For anyone wishing’ to study in the comfort of their Holy Cross homes, there are online accredited interior design programs. Studying online can be an excellent option for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be attended on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For some students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Added costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be decreased or eliminated also. Just be sure that the college you select is accredited by a respected accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also acquire accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the perfect option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Designer Schools
Now that you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the college needs to be within driving distance from your Holy Cross home. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will decrease 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 variables 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 programs you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you examine and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It’s necessary to make sure that the interior design school and program that you enroll in has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a demanding evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it may also help when securing financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Holy Cross employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some states do require that interior designers get licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those states mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of professional experience may be required also. So besides furnishing an outstanding education, the school you select should also provide the proper education to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Alaska or the state where you will be employed.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will probably need some assistance in finding your first position in Holy Cross. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its students are sought after. It may also indicate that the college has a significant network of business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the schools you are looking at and ask what kind of assistance they provide in 99602. A number of Alaska interior design schools offer financial assistance to their new students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide help in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that choosing an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive little individual attention from the teachers. Ask the programs you are considering what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Holy Cross home, visit the campus and attend 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, make certain that the interior design school you enroll in provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Holy Cross, make certain that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option also. Finally, find out what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.
Enroll in the Right Interior Design College Holy Cross AKPicking the ideal interior designer program is an important initial step toward launching your career in this artistic and gratifying occupation. Searching for a school where you will receive your training and cultivate your skills in a specific area of study is a daunting task no matter what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to acquire a higher education, there are many factors to consider before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design college are both accredited and highly respected in the profession. But it is still imperative that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly assess and compare programs so that you can make the right ultimate selection. And with superior training and your drive to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer.