Interior Designer Degree Program
How to Pick the Right One Near Buckeye Arizona
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near Buckeye AZ, it's time to begin the process of selecting a school. It's important that you get the appropriate training to put your skills to work, even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential interiors. 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 exam also. So in order to assess and compare each college you are considering before you make your final selection it's crucial that you perform the appropriate research. But just where do you start? A number of prospective students will kick off their research by looking for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. But keep in mind, a school is not always the right choice just because it has the lowest tuition or is located closest to your home. There are various other considerations that you should evaluate when analyzing schools, for example reputation and accreditation. We will address those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But before we do, let's cover 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 vs Interior Decoration
Some people mistake interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The principal distinction between them is the amount of training required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, doing business as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or residential spaces attractive as well as functional. On some occasions they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are 2 broad areas that an interior designer in Buckeye AZ may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When working on public or commercial spaces, designers normally focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may focus more on functionality over looks as the primary consideration.
There are many areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, for example color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. They need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to including Feng shui principles, Buckeye AZ interior designers implement a wide range of skills that contribute to their ultimate designs.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are four degree options available in interior design to receive the training needed to begin your new profession in Buckeye AZ. Your selection will no doubt be motivated by your career objectives as well as 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 qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in some states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees furnish the minimum amount of education needed to enter the profession. They take approximately two years to complete and programs are available at numerous Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the creative and technical facets of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced design training after attaining the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer options in specialty majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are primarily for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs differ in length but are typically completed in three to five years.
To work as a professional and use the title of "Interior Designer", many states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of field experience may be required before an applicant can take the licensing examination.
Interior Design Online Classes
For individuals who wish to study in the comfort of their Buckeye AZ homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Studying online can be a good solution for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make attending classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online colleges may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Added costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be decreased or eliminated as well. Just make certain that the program you choose is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, 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 learning. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design college may be the perfect alternative for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Designer Programs
When you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of analyzing your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the campus must be within driving distance from your Buckeye AZ residence. Obviously if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will narrow down your options also. But selecting the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you need to consider as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the college. Following are a few concerns that you may want to ask the schools you are reviewing to get those answers as well as others in order to help you assess and ultimately pick the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's necessary to make sure that the interior design school and program that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous assessment of their instructors and programs. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are exceptional, it may also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Buckeye AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States mandating licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. So aside from providing an outstanding education, the Buckeye AZ school you enroll in should also furnish the appropriate education to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design trade and its students are sought after. It may also signify that the college has a sizable network of Buckeye AZ business relationships where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Buckeye AZ colleges you are reviewing and ask what kind of assistance they offer. A number of interior designer programs provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Various schools offer partial scholarships while others provide help in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that choosing an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Buckeye AZ schools you are looking at what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Buckeye home, visit the college and monitor a few classes. Take the opportunity to talk with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Last, verify that the interior designer school you choose offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Buckeye AZ, make certain that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, verify that is an alternative as well. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
Choose the Right Buckeye Interior Design School
Selecting the right interior designer school is a crucial initial step toward launching your career in this creative and fulfilling occupation. Searching for a college where you will receive your training and develop your talents in a specific area of study is a daunting task no matter what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to acquire an advanced education, there are many factors to think about before enrolling in a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design college are both accredited and highly respected in the business. It is still essential that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Buckeye Arizona.