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Subjects to Ask Interior Designer Colleges
When you have selected the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your college options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the campus needs to be within commuting distance from your Selma AL home. Naturally if you are interested in attending a school online, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your choices also. But selecting the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the best ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you should consider as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a few concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you examine and ultimately pick the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's imperative to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you choose has earned accreditation from either a regional or national organization. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding assessment of their programs and teachers. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are excellent, it might also help when requesting financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Selma AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.
Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States mandating licensing, two or more years of occupational experience may be required as well. So aside from furnishing an excellent education, the Selma AL college you enroll in should also furnish the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior design certification, you will probably need some support in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the school and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design profession and its students are in demand. It could also indicate that the college has a large network of Selma AL business connections where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Contact the financial assistance departments for the Selma AL schools you are evaluating and find out what kind of assistance they provide. A number of interior design schools offer financial aid to their incoming students. Various schools offer partial scholarships and others provide support in acquiring grants or federal student loans. Again it must be stressed that selecting an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Small are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Selma AL programs you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Selma home, visit the college 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 styles are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer program you select offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Selma AL, confirm that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.