How to Find the Right Interior Designer School Kellyton 35089
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior designer college near Kellyton AL, it’s time to begin the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s important that you obtain the proper training to put your skills to work. And since a number of states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing examination also. So it’s very important that you perform the proper research so that you can assess and compare each college that you are considering before you make your final decision. But exactly where do you start? Some prospective students will start their research by searching for interior design colleges near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While location and cost are important factors when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation must be taken into consideration as well. We will discuss those topics and other vital 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 options are available.
Interior Design compared to Interior Decoration
Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The main difference between them is the level of education required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. On the other hand, conducting business as an interior designer requires formal training and in a number of states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make living or work areas functional as well as attractive. On many projects they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad areas that an interior designer in Kellyton AL may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers often 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, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When working on public or commercial spaces, designers normally concentrate primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main concern.
There are several areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, including lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. Designers have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui principles, Kellyton AL interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that help bring about their ultimate designs.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are four degree alternatives offered in interior design to acquire the training needed to start your new profession in Kellyton AL. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career goals as well as the money and time that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in some states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum amount of education required to enter the profession. They take about two years to complete and programs are offered at a number of Alabama vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that deliver more comprehensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the creative and technical facets of the trade required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs provide advanced design training after acquiring a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide choices in specialized majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are largely for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a university or college level. The programs differ in length but are usually completed in three to five years.
In order to work as a professional and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of field experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Schools
For students who to study in the convenience of their Kellyton AL homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Studying online can be a great alternative for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when practical for the student. For some students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design colleges are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be decreased or eliminated as well. Just be sure that the college you select is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online education. If you have the dedication to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Now that you have decided on the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can start the task of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important issue, especially if the college needs to be within commuting distance from your Kellyton AL home. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your options also. But picking the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you should look at as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a list of questions that you may want to address with the programs you are considering to get those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and subsequently select the right degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s essential to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you select has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. 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 gone through a rigorous assessment 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 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 securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Kellyton AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some 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 college. And in some of those States calling for licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So besides providing an excellent education, the Kellyton AL college you choose should also furnish the suitable instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will no doubt need some support 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 indication that the school and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also signify that the college has a sizable network of Kellyton AL business connections where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Kellyton AL schools you are reviewing and ask what kind of assistance they provide. Many of interior design programs offer financial aid to their incoming students. Some schools provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Kellyton AL schools you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Kellyton home, visit the college and attend a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak 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 Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior design college 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 in the evening or on weekends near Kellyton AL, make certain that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative also. Finally, check what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Kellyton AL?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Kellyton Alabama area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Select the Right Interior Design School near Kellyton AL
Picking the right interior designer college is a crucial initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and fulfilling occupation. Searching for a school where you will receive your training and develop your skills in a specific area of study is a difficult task no matter what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to receive a higher education, there are a number of points to consider before choosing a course, program or school. At a minimum, check that the program and design college are both accredited and highly respected in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Two Year Interior Design Programs. But it is still essential that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right ultimate selection. And with quality training and your determination to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Kellyton AL.
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