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Subjects to Ask Interior Design Schools
When you have selected the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of assessing your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Jasper AL residence. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your choices also. But choosing the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to home are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you need to look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the school. Below are a few concerns that you may want to ask the programs you are reviewing to obtain those answers in addition to others in order to help you examine and ultimately choose the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design School Accredited? It's important to confirm that the interior design college and program that you choose has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the industry 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 programs and instructors. Just verify that both the degree program and the college 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 outstanding, it might also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Jasper AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the College 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) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States calling for licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required also. Therefore besides providing an exceptional education, the Jasper AL school you select should also provide the proper education to pass the NCIDQ examination and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the College's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior design certification, you will undoubtedly want some help in finding your first position. 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 a good indication that the school and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design profession and its graduates are in demand. It could also signify that the college has a sizable network of Jasper AL business relationships where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Contact the financial aid departments for the Jasper AL schools you are reviewing and ask what type of aid they provide. Many of interior design programs offer financial aid to their new students. Certain colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide assistance in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that choosing an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Jasper AL colleges you are reviewing what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Jasper home, visit the college and sit in on a couple of classes. While there talk with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior designer school you choose offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Jasper AL, make sure that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.