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Topics to Ask Interior Designer Colleges
When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of reviewing your school options. Location will be an important issue, especially if the school needs to be within driving distance from your Eloy AZ home. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will decrease your choices as well. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the best ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you should look at also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the program. Below are a few concerns that you may want to address with the programs you are looking at to get those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and ultimately select the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It's essential 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 industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it may also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Eloy AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of States do mandate 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 calling for licensing, two or more years of professional experience may be required also. So besides furnishing an outstanding education, the Eloy AZ school you select should also provide the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will undoubtedly want some support in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design profession and its graduates are sought after. It may also indicate that the school has a sizable network of Eloy AZ business contacts where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial assistance departments for the Eloy AZ colleges you are reviewing and find out what type of aid they provide. A number of interior designer programs provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Eloy AZ programs you are reviewing what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Eloy home, visit the school and attend a few classes. While there talk with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer school you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Eloy AZ, confirm that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an option also. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.