How to Pick the Right Interior Design College Prescott 86301
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design school near Prescott AZ, it’s time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial spaces, it’s essential that you obtain the appropriate training to put your natural abilities to work. And since some states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s essential that you do the appropriate research so that you can analyze and compare each school that you are looking at before you make your final choice. But just where do you start? A number of prospective students will start 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. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be taken into account as well. We will discuss those topics and other vital questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are reviewing 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 Design compared to Interior Decoration
Often people mistake interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The primary distinction between them is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior spaces. However, working as an interior designer requires a formal education and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make living or work areas functional as well as attractive. On many occasions they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are 2 general areas that an interior designer in Prescott AZ can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers often work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any room of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When working on public or commercial spaces, designers often focus predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal 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 concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the primary consideration.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, including color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. Designers must be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui principles, Prescott AZ interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that help bring about their final creations.
Interior Designer Training Programs
There are four degree options available in interior design to obtain the training required to begin your new profession in Prescott AZ. Your selection will undoubtedly be motivated by your career objectives in addition to the time and money that you have to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in several states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of training required to enter the field. They take about two years to complete and programs are offered at many Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can commonly 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 technical and creative aspects of the trade required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced design training after acquiring the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide alternatives in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mostly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs differ in length but are generally completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally 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 field experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Design Degree Programs
For students who to study in the convenience of their Prescott AZ homes, there are accredited online interior design programs. Studying 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 home computer or laptop when practical for the student. For some students online colleges may be the sole alternative if no interior design programs are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Additional expenses for such things as study materials or commuting may be decreased or eliminated also. Just make sure that the school you select is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also acquire accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the discipline to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design school may be the perfect option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Schools
When you have decided on the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of reviewing your college options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Prescott AZ residence. Of course if you have decided on attending a school online, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The expense for tuition will limit your choices as well. But choosing the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you need to consider also, including the reputation and accreditation of the program. Following are a few concerns that you may want to ask the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers in addition to others to help you compare and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design School Accredited? It’s important to confirm that the interior design program and school that you select has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding assessment of their teachers and programs. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it may also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Prescott AZ employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the Program Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would require 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 mandating licensing, two or more years of occupational experience may be required also. So in addition to furnishing an outstanding education, the Prescott AZ school you select should also provide the proper education to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will undoubtedly want some help in finding your first position. Ask the schools that you are reviewing if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also indicate that the school has a significant network of Prescott AZ business relationships where they can place students to obtain internships or employment after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Prescott AZ colleges you are looking at and find out what type of aid they offer. Many of interior design colleges offer financial aid to their incoming students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide support in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that choosing an accredited program is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Prescott AZ programs you are considering what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Prescott home, go to the school and attend a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior design program you choose offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Prescott AZ, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the process is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Prescott AZ?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Prescott Arizona area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Prescott (/ˈprɛskɪt/ PRES-kɪt; Yavapai: ʼWi:kwatha Ksikʼita) is a city in Yavapai County, Arizona, United States. According to the 2010 Census, the population of the city is 39,843. The city is the county seat of Yavapai County. In 1864 Prescott was designated as the capital of the Arizona Territory, replacing the temporary capital at Fort Whipple. The Territorial Capital was moved to Tucson in 1867. Prescott again became the Territorial Capital in 1877, until Phoenix became the capital in 1889.
The towns of Prescott Valley, 7 miles (11 km) east; Chino Valley, 16 miles (26 km) north; Dewey-Humboldt, 13 miles (21 km) east, and Prescott, together comprise what is locally known as the "Quad-City" area. This also sometimes refers to central Yavapai County in general, which would include the towns of: Mayer, Paulden, Wilhoit, and Williamson Valley. Combined with these smaller communities the area had a population of 103,260 as of 2007[update]. Prescott is the center of the Prescott Metropolitan Area, defined by the U.S. Census Bureau as all of Yavapai County.
Arizona Territorial Governor John Noble Goodwin selected the original site of Prescott following his first tour of the new territory. Goodwin replaced Governor John A. Gurley, appointed by Abraham Lincoln, but died before taking office. Downtown streets in Prescott are named in honor of each of them. Goodwin selected a site 20 miles (32 km) south of the temporary capital on the east side of Granite Creek near a number of mining camps. The territorial capital was later moved to the new site along with Fort Whipple, with the new town named in honor of historian William H. Prescott during a public meeting on May 30, 1864. Robert W. Groom surveyed the new community, and an initial auction sold 73 lots on June 4, 1864. By July 4, 1864, a total of 232 lots had been sold within the new community. Prescott was officially incorporated in 1881.
Select the Ideal Interior Design School near Prescott AZ
Selecting the right interior designer school is a critical initial step toward starting your career in this creative and rewarding occupation. Searching for a school where you will obtain your training and cultivate your talents in a specific area of study is a challenging task regardless of what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to acquire a higher education, there are several things to think about before enrolling in a course, program or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the profession. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Classes To Take For Interior Design. However it is still essential that you perform your due diligence research. 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 final selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer in Prescott AZ.
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