How to Select the Right Interior Design Program Jackson 36545
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Jackson AL, it’s time to start the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s essential that you get the right training to put your skills to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing exam also. So it’s essential that you perform the proper research in order to analyze and compare each college that you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection. But exactly where do you start? A number of potential students will begin their research by searching for interior design colleges near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are relevant factors when making a decision, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation need to be taken into account also. We will discuss those topics and other crucial questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are looking at later in this article. But first, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class options are offered.
Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Some people mistake interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The main distinction between the two is the amount of education required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. However, working as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or residential areas functional as well as attractive. On some occasions they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Jackson AL can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers often work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any area of the home, 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 areas, designers often focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For instance, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals 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 color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. They must 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, Jackson AL interior designers implement a wide range of skills that contribute to their ultimate creations.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are four degree alternatives offered in interior design to receive the training necessary to launch your new profession in Jackson AL. Your decision will no doubt be influenced by your career objectives in addition to the money and time that you have budgeted to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, make sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in several states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum level of training needed to enter the profession. They take about 2 years to finish and programs are available at a number of Alabama community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically 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 creative and technical facets of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs furnish advanced design training after acquiring a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide alternatives in specialty majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mostly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are typically completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Designer Schools
For anyone wishing’ to attend classes in the convenience of their Jackson AL homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a good solution for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make attending classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online colleges may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Additional costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated also. Just make sure that the school you select is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the discipline to obtain your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design program may be the ideal option for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Designer Colleges
Once you have selected the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important issue, especially if the school must be within driving distance from your Jackson AL residence. Of course if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will decrease your options also. But choosing the most affordable school or the one that is nearest to home are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should consider as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the school. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the programs you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you compare and subsequently select the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It’s essential to confirm that the interior designer school and program that you choose 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). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone an extensive evaluation of their teachers and programs. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are excellent, it might also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Jackson AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of States do require that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those States mandating licensing, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required also. So aside from furnishing an outstanding education, the Jackson AL college you enroll in should also furnish the proper education to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and earned your interior designer certification, you will no doubt need some help in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It could also signify that the school has a sizable network of Jackson AL business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Contact the financial assistance offices for the Jackson AL schools you are looking at and find out what kind of support they offer. A number of interior design colleges provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Various schools provide partial scholarships and others provide support in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a college that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive little individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Jackson AL schools you are reviewing what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Jackson home, visit the school and sit in on a few classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, verify that the interior designer school you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Jackson AL, make certain that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, confirm that is an alternative also. Finally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Jackson AL?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Jackson Alabama area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Al Jackson Jr.
Albert J. Jackson Jr. (November 27, 1935 – October 1, 1975) was an American drummer, producer, and songwriter. He was a founding member of Booker T. & the M.G.'s, a group of session musicians who worked for Stax Records and produced their own instrumentals. Jackson was affectionately dubbed "The Human Timekeeper" for his drumming ability. He was inducted into the Memphis Music Hall of Fame in 2015.
Jackson's father, Al Jackson Sr., led a jazz/swing dance band in Memphis, Tennessee. The young Jackson started drumming at an early age and began playing on stage with his father's band in 1940, at the age of five. He later played in producer and trumpeter Willie Mitchell's band and at the same time was holding down a chair in the popular Ben Branch Band.
Future bandmates Steve Cropper and Donald "Duck" Dunn first heard Jackson playing in Mitchell's band at the Flamingo Room, and the all-white Manhattan Club. Mitchell had also hired Booker T. Jones for his band. It was Jones who suggested Jackson be brought to Stax. He said, "You guys need to know about Al." Dunn said that Jackson almost caused his wife to divorce him, because after finishing his own gig at one o'clock, he would stop by a club to hear Jackson and would get home at four or five in the morning; "He was that good!" said Dunn. At first, Jackson was reluctant to join Stax. He felt he could make more money playing live than doing session work. He wanted a guaranteed regular salary to come over to Stax (although he continued to play on sessions produced by Mitchell for Hi Records). And so he became the first Stax session musician to be on a weekly salary.
Pick the Right Interior Design School near Jackson AL
Selecting the right interior design program is a critical first step toward launching your career in this creative and rewarding occupation. Searching for a college where you will receive your training and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what major you have selected. As with any endeavor to attain a higher education, there are several things to consider before selecting a school, program, or course. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the field. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Professional Interior Design Course. But it is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations provided 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 quality training and your desire to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Jackson AL.
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