How to Pick the Right Interior Design College Severna Park 21146
Once you have made a decision to enroll in an interior designer school near Severna Park MD, it’s time to begin the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s imperative that you get the appropriate training to put your natural abilities to work. And since a number of states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, depending on your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing examination as well. So it’s essential that you do the appropriate research so that you can assess and compare each college that you are considering prior to making your ultimate choice. But just where do you start? Many future students will begin their research by looking for interior design courses near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are key variables when making a decision, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation must be taken into account as well. We will cover those issues and other important questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are reviewing 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 choices are available.
Interior Decoration and Interior Design
Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The principal difference between them is the level of training required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they have a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. However, conducting business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or residential areas attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may team up with building engineers and architects. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Severna Park MD may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers often work on new construction and existing homes. They can design basically any room of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, such as kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Design. When working on public or commercial areas, designers normally focus predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces 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 numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, for example lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. Designers need to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From selecting wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui concepts, Severna Park MD interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that help bring about their final creations.
Interior Designer Training Programs
There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to obtain the training necessary to start your new profession in Severna Park MD. Your selection will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to devote to your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, make sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in several states. More will be discussed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees furnish the minimum amount of training required to enter the field. They take approximately 2 years to finish and programs are available at many Maryland community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that furnish more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical aspects of the trade required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree 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 provide choices in specialized majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mainly for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs vary in length but are typically completed in three to five years.
In order to work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Classes
For anyone wishing’ to attend classes in the comfort of their Severna Park MD homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a great solution for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online programs may be the sole alternative if no interior design schools are within commuting distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Added costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated also. Just make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design college may be the right option for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Designer Programs
When you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your school options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Severna Park MD home. 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 qualification. The fee for tuition will limit your choices as well. But picking the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to home are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you should consider also, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are reviewing to obtain those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and subsequently pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It’s necessary to verify that the interior design school and program that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding assessment of their programs and teachers. Just confirm that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it may also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, many Severna Park MD employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the Program Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require 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 program. And in several of those States calling for licensing, at least 2 years of work experience may be required also. So besides furnishing an exceptional education, the Severna Park MD school you choose should also provide the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Maryland or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will no doubt want some help 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 higher rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its students are sought after. It could also signify that the college has a substantial network of Severna Park MD business contacts where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial assistance offices for the Severna Park MD schools you are looking at and ask what kind of aid they offer. A number of interior design programs offer financial aid to their new students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide help in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Severna Park MD schools you are reviewing what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Severna Park home, go to the campus and sit in on 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 philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior design program you enroll in offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Severna Park MD, verify that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Severna Park MD?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Severna Park Maryland area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Severna Park, Maryland
Severna Park is a census-designated place (CDP) in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States. Severna Park is part of the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan Area, and is located approximately 8 miles (13 km) north of Annapolis, 17 miles (27 km) south of Baltimore, and 39 miles (63 km) east of Washington, D.C. Severna Park's population was 37,634 at the 2010 census.
The name Severna Park is believed to originate from a 1906 contest held by Oscar Hatton while the modern community was first becoming established. The winner would receive a portion of land but controversy arose because the winner was an African-American woman, who was instead rewarded $500.
Robinson House was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2009. Severna Park was originally named "Boone," and was a stop along the Baltimore & Annapolis Railroad, which was converted to the B&A Rail Trail in 1990. Severna Park is also home to the Severn School, which was established in 1914, as well as several other old homes and buildings.
Enroll in the Ideal Interior Design School near Severna Park MD
Selecting the right interior designer program is an important first step toward starting your career in this creative and gratifying occupation. Locating a college where you will obtain your training and develop your skills in a particular area of study is a difficult job no matter what field you have selected. As with any undertaking to attain an advanced education, there are many things to think about before enrolling in a program, course or school. At a minimum, check that the design college and program are both accredited and highly regarded in the field. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Colleges That Offer Interior Design. But it is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Severna Park MD.
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