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What to Ask Interior Designer Schools

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After you have decided on the interior design degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of assessing your college options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Torrington WY residence. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your options as well. But picking the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you should consider also, such as the accreditation and reputation of the program. Below are a few questions that you may want to ask the programs you are looking at to obtain those answers in addition to others in order to help you assess and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior design program and school that you enroll in has been accredited by either a regional or national 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 an extensive evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are excellent, it may also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Torrington WY employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.

Does the Program Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination as well as a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States calling for licensing, 2 or more years of work experience may be required as well. Therefore in addition to providing an exceptional education, the Torrington WY school you choose should also furnish the proper training to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Wyoming or the State where you will be working.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior designer certification, you will probably want some help in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design profession and its graduates are sought after. It may also indicate that the college has a significant network of Torrington WY business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial assistance departments for the Torrington WY schools you are reviewing and ask what type of support they provide. Many of interior design programs offer financial assistance to their incoming students. Some schools offer partial scholarships and others provide support in obtaining federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited college is important for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its competitors because they offer more generous financial assistance.

How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Torrington WY colleges you are reviewing what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Torrington home, visit the school and attend a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their credentials are in interior design.

Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior design school you enroll in offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Torrington WY, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, check what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.

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