How to Find the Right Interior Designer Program Cottondale 35453
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior design degree program near Cottondale AL, it’s time to begin the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial interiors, it’s important that you get the appropriate training to put your natural abilities to work. And since a number of states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing exam also. So it’s vital that you do the appropriate research in order to evaluate and compare each program that you are considering prior to making your ultimate choice. But where do you start? Many future students will kick off their research by looking for interior design colleges near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While location and cost are relevant issues when making a determination, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation should be considered also. We will address those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training options are offered.
Interior Decoration compared to Interior Design
Often people confuse interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The primary distinction between them is the amount of education required. Anyone can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, working as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or living spaces functional as well as attractive. On various projects they may work together with architects and building engineers. There are 2 general categories that an interior designer in Cottondale AL can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently work on new construction and existing homes. They can design basically any area of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public spaces, designers often concentrate predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the main consideration.
There are several areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, for example lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. Designers need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From choosing carpeting and wall paper to integrating Feng shui concepts, Cottondale AL interior designers implement a wide range of skills that help bring about their ultimate designs.
Interior Designer Degree Options
There are four degree alternatives available in interior design to acquire the training required to launch your new career in Cottondale AL. Your selection will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals as well as the time and money that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you decide to enroll in, make certain to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design provide the minimum amount of training needed to enter the field. They take roughly two years to complete and programs are available at numerous Alabama community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level positions 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 facets of the business required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced training in design after achieving a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide alternatives in specialized majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are largely for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs differ in length but are usually 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 colleges become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing examination.
Interior Design Online Schools
For anyone wishing’ to study in the comfort of their Cottondale AL homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a good option for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when convenient for the student. For some students online programs may be the sole alternative if no interior design programs 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 reduced or eliminated also. Just make certain that the school you pick is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. If you have the dedication to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design college may be the perfect alternative for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Design Programs
Now that you have chosen the interior design degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the task of reviewing your college options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the school must be within driving distance from your Cottondale AL home. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are willing to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your choices as well. But selecting the most affordable college or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the school. Below are a list of questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are reviewing to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you assess and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s imperative to verify that the interior design program and college that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive 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 verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are excellent, it may also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Cottondale AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited school. And in several of those States requiring licensing, two or more years of work experience may be required also. Therefore aside from providing an excellent education, the Cottondale AL college you choose should also furnish the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly want some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the colleges 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 indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are sought after. It may also indicate that the school has a substantial network of Cottondale AL business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Cottondale AL schools you are reviewing and ask what type of support they offer. A number of interior design programs provide financial aid to their incoming students. Certain schools offer partial scholarships while others provide support in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited college 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 provide more generous financial aid.
How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive little individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Cottondale AL programs you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Cottondale home, visit the campus and attend a few 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 credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior design school you select provides classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Cottondale AL, make sure that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, verify that is an option also. Finally, check what the protocol is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Cottondale AL?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Cottondale Alabama area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Richard Price Rummonds
Richard Price Rummonds (also known as Richard-Gabriel Price Rummonds), one of the foremost handpress printers of the late twentieth century, is also an author, publisher, typographer, and historian of printing. His two books on nineteenth-century printing, Printing on the Iron Handpress and Nineteenth-Century Printing Practices and the Iron Handpress, comprehensively describe the history, operation and merits of the iron handpress.
Born on April 26, 1931, in Long Beach, California, Rummonds was raised in Sacramento, California. He attended Syracuse University in 1949–1950, in the School of Fine Arts, with the intention of majoring in set and costume design and the University of California at Berkeley intermittently between 1950 and 1954, where he majored in English and Creative Writing. During this period he was on the staff of Occident, the student literary magazine, of which he became the editor for the Spring 1954 issue.
Rummonds began printing in Quito, Ecuador in 1966, using the Plain Wrapper Press imprint. His first book was a selection of his own poems. The following year in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he printed a book of his short stories.
Pick the Right Interior Design School near Cottondale AL
Selecting the ideal interior design program is an important initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and gratifying profession. Finding a school where you will obtain your training and cultivate your skills in a particular area of study is a daunting job regardless of what field you have chosen. As with any endeavor to receive a higher education, there are several points to think about before choosing a school, program, or course. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Colleges With Interior Design Programs. However it is still essential that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the balance of the suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with superior training and your desire to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Cottondale AL.
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