Interior Designer Course
How to Select the Right One Near Kingman Arizona
So it’s time to start the process of choosing an interior design school near Kingman AZ now that you have made a career choice to become an interior designer. It's important that you get the appropriate training to develop your skills, even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential interiors. And because interior designers must be licensed in several states, the college you choose should prep you to pass any required licensing exam as well as provide the proper training for your specialty. So it's essential you carry out the proper research so that you can assess and compare each school that you are considering before you make your ultimate selection. But just how do you approach finding the right school? Many future students will kick off their research by looking for interior design colleges near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are relevant factors when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. There are many other qualifications that you should weigh when reviewing schools, for example accreditation and reputation. We will cover those topics and other vital questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But first, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class options are offered.
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Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Many people mistake interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The principal distinction between them is the level of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. On the other hand, doing business as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or living areas attractive as well as functional. On many projects they may team up with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Kingman AZ may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers often work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any room of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with public or commercial areas, designers normally focus primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For example, 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 main concern.
There are several areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. They have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From selecting wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui concepts, Kingman AZ interior designers utilize a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Designer Degree Options
There are four degree options available in interior design to acquire the training necessary to start your new career in Kingman AZ. Your choice will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals as well as the time and money that you have to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, make sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in several states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum level of education needed to enter the profession. They take about 2 years to finish and programs are available at numerous Arizona trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can usually obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are four year programs that furnish more comprehensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the creative and technical components of the trade required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a graduating student in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master's Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced design training after achieving the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer choices in specialized majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are mostly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are usually completed in 3 to 5 years.
To work professionally and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", many states mandate that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of professional experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing examination.
Interior Designer Online Schools
For anyone wishing' to study in the convenience of their Kingman AZ homes, there are accredited online interior design programs. Attending classes online can be a good solution for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be attended on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online schools may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Additional costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be decreased or eliminated as well. Just make certain that the college you pick is accredited by a respected 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 education. If you have the discipline to obtain your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design college may be the right alternative for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Once you have chosen the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the school needs to be within commuting distance from your Kingman AZ residence. Obviously if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will limit your options as well. But selecting the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the best ways to make your selection. There are other variables that you need to look at as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the program. Following are a list of 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 subsequently select the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Design School Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior design program and college that you select has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their instructors and programs. Just confirm that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are exceptional, it might also help when securing financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Kingman AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the School Prepare 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 in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those States mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore aside from providing an outstanding education, the Kingman AZ college you choose should also furnish the suitable training to pass the NCIDQ exam and satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly want some support in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good sign that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It could also signify that the school has a substantial network of Kingman AZ business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Contact the financial aid offices for the Kingman AZ colleges you are reviewing and ask what kind of assistance they provide. Many of interior design schools provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide help in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited college is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a college that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Kingman AZ programs you are considering what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Kingman home, go to the campus and attend 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 credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior designer school you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Kingman AZ, make sure that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, check that is an option also. Finally, find out what the process is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Choose the Best Kingman Interior Design School
Choosing the ideal interior design school is a crucial initial step toward launching your career in this artistic and gratifying occupation. Searching for a college where you will obtain your education and develop your talents in a particular area of study is a daunting task no matter what major you have chosen. As with any undertaking to receive a higher education, there are many factors to think about before enrolling in a school, program, or course. At a minimum, make sure that the design college and program are both accredited and highly respected in the business. It is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with superior training and your desire to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Kingman Arizona.