Interior Designer Degree
How to Enroll in the Best One Near Fort Mohave Arizona
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near Fort Mohave AZ, it's time to begin the process of choosing a school. It's imperative that you get the appropriate training to put your skills to work, even if you have always had a knack for designing residential or commercial interiors. And because interior designers must be licensed in several states, the college you select should prep you to pass any required licensing test as well as provide the proper training for your specialty. So in order to evaluate and compare each school you are looking at before you make your ultimate decision it's essential that you carry out the appropriate research. But just how do you undertake enrolling in the right program? When looking for interior design schools, the majority of students begin by targeting the ones that are nearest to their homes with the lowest tuition. While location and cost are important factors when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be taken into account as well. We will discuss those issues and other crucial questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are researching 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 alternatives 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 difference between the two is the amount of education required. Anyone can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, working as an interior designer requires a formal education and in a number of states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor's Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or living spaces attractive as well as functional. On various occasions they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Fort Mohave AZ may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any room of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public areas, designers frequently focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas 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 concern.
There are several areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, including lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They must be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Fort Mohave AZ interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Degree Options
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to acquire the training necessary to launch your new career in Fort Mohave AZ. Your decision will undoubtedly be driven by your career objectives in addition to the money and time that you have to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, make certain to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in several states. More will be covered on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design furnish the minimum level of education needed to enter the profession. They take roughly 2 years to finish and programs are offered at numerous Arizona vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can commonly qualify for entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are four year programs that furnish more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the creative and technical facets of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These two year programs provide advanced training in design after attaining a Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer choices in specialized 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. Doctorate programs are primarily for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are generally completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and use the title of "Interior Designer", many states require that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of field experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing examination.
Online Interior Designer Classes
For students who to attend classes in the convenience of their Fort Mohave AZ homes, there are online accredited interior design schools. Studying online can be a great alternative for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when convenient for the student. For a number of students online colleges may be the sole option if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Added expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated also. Just make sure that the college you choose is accredited by a respected accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also acquire accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. If you have the discipline to earn your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the right option for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Now that you have selected the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of assessing your college options. Location will be an important issue, especially if the college has to be within driving distance from your Fort Mohave AZ residence. Of course if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your options as well. But choosing the cheapest school or the one that is closest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you need to consider also, such as the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a few concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are considering to obtain those answers as well as others to help you compare and ultimately select the right degree program.
Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's imperative to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you enroll in has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their programs and teachers. Just verify that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college 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 schools. Also, a number of Fort Mohave AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the Program Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in several of those States requiring licensing, two or more years of professional experience may be required also. Therefore aside from providing an outstanding education, the Fort Mohave AZ school you enroll in should also furnish the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will probably need some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design profession and its students are in demand. It might also indicate that the college has a large network of Fort Mohave AZ business contacts where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Contact the financial aid departments for the Fort Mohave AZ colleges you are looking at and ask what kind of assistance they provide. A number of interior design schools provide financial aid to their incoming students. Certain colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide help in acquiring grants or federal student loans. Again it must be stressed that selecting an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Fort Mohave AZ schools you are considering what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Fort Mohave home, go to the school and monitor a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few 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? Finally, make sure that the interior design program you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Fort Mohave AZ, make certain that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, check that is an alternative as well. Finally, find out what the process is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
Enroll in the Right Fort Mohave Interior Design College
Selecting the right interior designer program is a crucial first step toward starting your career in this artistic and gratifying profession. Finding a college where you will obtain your education and develop your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging task regardless of what major you have decided on. As with any endeavor to receive a higher education, there are many things to consider before selecting a course, program or school. At a minimum, verify that the design college and program are both accredited and highly esteemed in the field. It is still important that you complete your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the right final selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Fort Mohave Arizona.