How to Pick an Interior Design College near Globe Arizona
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior design school near Globe AZ, it’s time to begin the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s imperative that you receive the right training to put your talents to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need training to pass a licensing examination also. So it’s very important that you do the appropriate research in order to analyze and compare each school that you are considering prior to making your final decision. But just where do you start? A number of prospective students will begin their research by searching for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are important factors when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation should be considered as well. We will cover those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are looking at later in this article. But before we do, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training choices are offered.
Interior Decoration compared to Interior Design
Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The primary distinction between the two is the amount of education required. Anyone can do business as an interior decorator in Globe AZ if they have a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. On the other hand, conducting business as an interior designer requires a formal education and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or residential spaces functional as well as attractive. On many occasions they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers in Globe AZ typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When working on commercial or public areas, Globe AZ designers normally focus predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. For instance, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may focus more on functionality over looks as the primary consideration.
There are various areas of residential and commercial interior design in Globe AZ that a designer must learn, for example lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They must be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui concepts, interior designers implement a wide variety of skills that help bring about their ultimate creations.
Interior Design Training Programs
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to obtain the training necessary to start your new profession. Your choice will undoubtedly be motivated by your career objectives as well as the money and time that you have to invest in your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, make certain to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in a number of states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available near Globe AZ.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design furnish the minimum level of training needed to enter the field. They take roughly 2 years to complete and programs are available at numerous Globe AZ area trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can typically obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that deliver more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical components of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs provide advanced training in design after acquiring a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide options in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are largely for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are typically completed in 3 to 5 years.
To work as a professional and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states require that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of professional experience may be required before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Colleges
For individuals who wish to study in the convenience of their homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a great alternative for those students that are working or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when convenient for the student. For many students online programs may be the only option if no Globe AZ area interior design schools are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Added costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be minimized or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the school you select is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design program may be the perfect option for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Design Programs
When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of assessing your Globe AZ area school options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the campus must be within commuting distance from your residence. Obviously if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices as well. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few concerns that you may want to ask the schools you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you compare and ultimately pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It’s necessary to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you select has earned accreditation from either a regional or national agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous assessment of their programs and instructors. 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 establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when securing financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Globe AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the College Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of states do mandate that interior designers become 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 school. And in several of those states mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of work experience may be required also. So in addition to furnishing an outstanding education, the Globe AZ school you choose should also provide the proper education to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the state where you will be employed.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly want some help in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering 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 school and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design field and its students are sought after. It could also indicate that the school has a sizable network of Globe AZ area business connections where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Contact the financial aid departments for the colleges you are evaluating and ask what type of aid they offer. Many of Globe AZ area interior design schools provide financial assistance to their new students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide assistance in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Globe AZ colleges you are reviewing what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your home, go to the college and sit in on a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the Globe AZ interior design college you select offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends, confirm that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative also. Finally, check what the process is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Choose the Ideal Interior Design Program near Globe ArizonaChoosing the right interior design school is an important first step toward launching your career in this creative and gratifying profession. Finding a school where you will receive your education and develop your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what major you have chosen. As with any undertaking to attain an advanced education, there are a number of factors to think about before enrolling in a school, program, or course. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design school are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. But it is still important that you conduct your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare colleges so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer.
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