Interior Designer Course
How to Find the Right One Near Casa Grande Arizona
So it’s time to start the task of selecting an interior design school near Casa Grande AZ once you have made a career choice to study to be an interior designer. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential spaces, it's essential that you receive the proper training to put your natural abilities to work. And since interior designers must be licensed in a number of states, the college you select should prep you to pass any required licensing exam as well as provide the proper training for your specialty. So it's very important 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 begin? Many potential students will start their research by searching for interior design schools near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are key issues when making a decision, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation need to be taken into consideration as well. We will address those topics and other vital questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But before we do, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class choices are offered.
IT TAKES JUST A FEW MINUTES TO START YOUR INTERIOR DESIGN CAREER BELOW!
Interior Design Compared to Interior Decoration
Some people mistake interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The primary distinction between the two is the level of education required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they have a basic 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 Associate or Bachelor's Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or residential spaces functional as well as attractive. On many projects they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are two general areas that an interior designer in Casa Grande AZ can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers typically 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 can specialize in designing one specific room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with public or commercial areas, designers often focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might focus more on functionality over appearance as the main concern.
There are many areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, such as color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. They must be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From selecting carpeting and wall paper to integrating Feng shui concepts, Casa Grande AZ interior designers utilize a wide variety of skills that contribute to their ultimate designs.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are 4 degree alternatives offered in interior design to get the training necessary to begin your new profession in Casa Grande AZ. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, make sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum level of training required to enter the field. They take roughly 2 years to complete and programs are available at a number of Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level positions as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative aspects of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These two year programs supply advanced design training after attaining a 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 advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are largely for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are normally completed in 3 to 5 years.
In order to work as a professional and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", many states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be needed before an applicant can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Design Classes
For anyone wishing' to study in the convenience of their Casa Grande AZ homes, there are accredited online interior design programs. Attending classes online can be a good alternative for those students that are working or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended 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 programs are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated also. Just make sure that the college you enroll in is accredited by a respected accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the discipline to obtain your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the right alternative for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Schools
After you have chosen the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can start the task of reviewing your college options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the school needs to be within driving distance from your Casa Grande AZ residence. Of course if you have decided on attending a school online, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will limit your options as well. But choosing the most affordable college or the one that is closest to home are not the best ways to make your decision. There are other things that you need to consider as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It's essential to make sure that the interior design college and program that you choose has been accredited by 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 earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their teachers 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 confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it might also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Casa Grande AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the College Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as 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 providing an outstanding education, the Casa Grande AZ school you choose should also provide the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will probably want some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design profession and its graduates are sought after. It might also signify that the school has a significant network of Casa Grande AZ business connections where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Casa Grande AZ colleges you are evaluating and ask what type of assistance they provide. A number of interior design colleges provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Casa Grande AZ programs you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Casa Grande home, go to the college and monitor 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 credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior designer school you choose provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Casa Grande AZ, make certain that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, confirm 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 Best Casa Grande Interior Design School
Selecting the right interior design school is an important initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and fulfilling profession. Searching for a college where you will obtain your education and cultivate your talents in a specific area of study is a challenging job no matter what field you have decided on. As with any undertaking to acquire a higher education, there are a number of things to think about before enrolling in a course, program or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design school are both accredited and highly respected in the field. It is still imperative that you complete your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design programs so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with quality training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Casa Grande Arizona.