Interior Designer Program
How to Enroll in the Right One Near Anthem Arizona
So it’s time to start the process of picking an interior design school near Anthem AZ now that you have made a career decision to become an interior designer. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial spaces, it's imperative that you receive the appropriate training to put your talents to work. And since several states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need training to pass a licensing examination also. So it's essential you carry out the proper research in order to assess and compare each school that you are reviewing before you make your ultimate selection. But just where do you start? When checking out interior design programs, many potential students begin by targeting those that are closest to their homes with the lowest tuition. While cost and location are key factors when making a determination, they are by no means the sole ones. There are various other considerations that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, for example reputation and accreditation. We will discuss those topics and other important questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are interested in later in this article. But first, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class options are offered.
IT TAKES JUST A FEW MINUTES TO START YOUR INTERIOR DESIGN CAREER BELOW!
Interior Design Compared to Interior Decoration
Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The main distinction between them is the level of education required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, doing business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or residential spaces attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Anthem AZ may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with commercial or public areas, designers frequently focus primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may focus more on functionality over appearance as the primary consideration.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. They have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui principles, Anthem AZ interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Degree Options
There are four degree alternatives offered in interior design to receive the training needed to start your new profession in Anthem AZ. Your decision will undoubtedly be driven by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, make certain to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in a number of states. More will be covered on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees furnish the minimum amount of training required to enter the field. They take about 2 years to complete and programs are offered at a number of Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can usually obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that furnish more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative aspects of the trade required to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These 2 year programs supply advanced training in design after attaining the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees provide choices in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a university or college level. The programs differ in length but are generally completed in three to five years.
To work as a professional and use the title of "Interior Designer", a number of states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Degree Programs
For those who wish to study in the convenience of their Anthem AZ homes, there are accredited online interior design programs. Studying online can be a great option for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be accessed on a laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For some students online programs may be the only option if no interior design programs are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Additional costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be decreased or eliminated also. Just make certain that the program you pick is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, 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 online or distance learning. If you have the dedication to obtain your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design program may be the perfect alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Designer Colleges
After you have selected the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can start the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important issue, especially if the school must be within driving distance from your Anthem AZ residence. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will limit your choices also. But selecting the least expensive school or the one that is closest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you should consider as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are considering to obtain those answers in addition to others in order to help you compare and ultimately choose the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It's imperative to verify that the interior design school and program that you choose has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their programs and instructors. Just confirm 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 confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it may also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Anthem AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the Program Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do mandate that interior designers get 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 several of those States mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. Therefore aside from providing an outstanding education, the Anthem AZ school you select should also provide the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and fulfill the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be working.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior design certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are reviewing if they have a job assistance program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication that the school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It could also signify that the college has a significant network of Anthem AZ business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Anthem AZ schools you are looking at and ask what type of aid they provide. Many of interior designer schools provide financial aid to their incoming students. Certain schools offer partial scholarships and others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a school that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Anthem AZ schools you are reviewing what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Anthem home, visit the school and monitor a few 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 backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Fit your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer school you select offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Anthem AZ, make certain that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, find out what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Choose the Best Anthem Interior Design School
Choosing the right interior design school is a critical first step toward launching your career in this creative and gratifying occupation. Finding a school where you will obtain your training and develop your skills in a specific area of study is a difficult task no matter what major you have selected. As with any undertaking to acquire a higher education, there are a number of factors to consider before selecting a program, course or school. At a minimum, confirm that the design college and program are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. It is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right final selection. And with superior training and your desire to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Anthem Arizona.