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What to Ask Interior Designer Schools
When you have chosen the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the process of assessing your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the college must be within commuting distance from your Casa Grande AZ home. Obviously if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will decrease your options also. But selecting the most affordable school or the one that is closest to home are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you should consider as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a few questions that you may want to ask the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you assess and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's necessary to confirm that the interior designer program and school that you enroll in has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their instructors and programs. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are excellent, it may also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Casa Grande AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the School Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some States do mandate that interior designers become 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 school. And in some of those States calling for licensing, two or more years of professional experience may be required as well. Therefore besides providing an excellent education, the Casa Grande AZ program you enroll in should also furnish the suitable training to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It could also indicate that the college has a substantial network of Casa Grande AZ business contacts where they can refer students to obtain internships or employment after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Casa Grande AZ colleges you are looking at and find out what kind of aid they provide. Many of interior designer schools offer financial assistance to their new students. Various schools provide partial scholarships and others provide support in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited college is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a college that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classrooms? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Casa Grande AZ programs you are looking at what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Casa Grande home, go to the campus and attend a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Last, verify that the interior design program you select offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Casa Grande AZ, verify that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, confirm that is an option also. Finally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.