How to Find the Right Interior Design School Lakeside 85929
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near Lakeside AZ, it’s time to begin the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial spaces, it’s imperative that you obtain the right training to put your natural abilities to work. And since several states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing examination as well. So it’s very important that you carry out the appropriate research in order to assess and compare each college that you are considering before you make your final selection. But exactly where do you start? Many prospective students will begin their research by searching for interior design courses near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are relevant issues when making a determination, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be considered also. We will cover those issues 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 class alternatives are offered.
Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Some people mistake interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The principal distinction between them is the level of education required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. On the other hand, doing business as an interior designer requires formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or residential areas attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may work together with architects and building engineers. There are two broad areas that an interior designer in Lakeside AZ may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any area of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with public or commercial spaces, designers often focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. For example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are areas where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might focus more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are several areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, for example color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. Designers need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui concepts, Lakeside AZ interior designers implement a wide range of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are four degree options offered in interior design to acquire the training necessary to launch your new profession in Lakeside AZ. Your choice will undoubtedly be driven by your career goals as well as the time and money that you have budgeted to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, make certain to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in a number of states. More will be covered on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum amount of training needed to enter the profession. They take about two years to finish and programs are offered at a number of Arizona vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level positions as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that provide more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative facets of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs supply advanced design training after attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide choices in specialty majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. 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 programs vary in length but are usually completed in three to five years.
To work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Schools
For individuals who wish to study in the convenience of their Lakeside AZ homes, there are accredited online interior design degrees. Attending classes online can be a good option for those students that are employed or have busy 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 a number of students online schools 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 decreased or eliminated also. Just make sure that the college you pick is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also obtain 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 college may be the perfect alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges
After you have selected the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of assessing your school options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the school must be within commuting distance from your Lakeside AZ residence. Naturally if you are interested in attending a school online, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will limit your choices also. But picking the cheapest college or the one that is closest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should consider as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are considering to get those answers as well as others in order to help you assess and subsequently pick the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It’s essential to verify that the interior designer program and college that you enroll in has been accredited by 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 undergone a demanding assessment of their programs and teachers. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education 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 Lakeside AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.
Does the College Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination 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 also. Therefore aside from furnishing an excellent education, the Lakeside AZ school you choose should also provide the proper training to pass the NCIDQ exam and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be working.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will no doubt need some support in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its graduates are sought after. It might also indicate that the school has a large network of Lakeside AZ business relationships where they can place students to secure internships or employment after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Lakeside AZ schools you are reviewing and find out what type of aid they provide. Many of interior designer programs offer financial aid to their incoming students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide support in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that choosing an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its competitors because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Large are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Lakeside AZ schools you are reviewing what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Lakeside home, go to the college and sit in on a few classes. While there talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior designer program you select offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Lakeside AZ, verify that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative as well. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Lakeside AZ?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Lakeside Arizona area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Pinetop–Lakeside is a small town in Navajo County, Arizona, United States. According to 2010 census, the population of the town is 4,282. It was founded in 1984 when the neighboring towns of Pinetop and Lakeside merged.
Pinetop–Lakeside is a popular summer resort and second-home area for Arizona desert residents. In 2002, a large forest fire, the Rodeo-Chediski fire, threatened the town and forced an evacuation. The town is near extensive forests, and in normal times is a popular recreational area.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 11.3 square miles (29 km2), of which, 11.3 square miles (29 km2) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2) of it (0.71%) is water.
Find the Best Interior Design School near Lakeside AZ
Picking the right interior design program is a critical first step toward launching your career in this artistic and gratifying profession. Locating a school where you will receive your education and develop your talents in a specific area of study is a challenging task regardless of what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to acquire a higher education, there are a number of factors to consider before enrolling in a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the field. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Subjects Required For Interior Designing. However it is still essential that you complete your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations provided in this article, you will be able to effectively evaluate and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with superior training and your desire to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Lakeside AZ.
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