How to Find the Right Interior Designer Degree Program Boaz 35956
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior designer school near Boaz AL, it’s time to start the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial interiors, it’s imperative that you receive the proper training to put your talents to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, depending on your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s crucial that you do the appropriate research so that you can analyze and compare each program that you are reviewing before you make your final selection. But just where do you begin? Many prospective students will kick off their research by searching for interior design courses near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are relevant variables when making a determination, they should not be the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation must be taken into account also. We will cover those issues and other crucial questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But before we do, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training choices are offered.
Interior Decoration compared to Interior Design
Often people mistake interior design for interior decoration and vice versa. The main distinction between the two is the amount of training 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 necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or living spaces attractive as well as functional. On various occasions they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Boaz AL can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design basically any room of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, such as bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public spaces, designers normally focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. As an example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might focus more on functionality over appearance as the main concern.
There are several areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, for example color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. They have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Boaz AL interior designers utilize a wide variety of skills that help bring about their final designs.
Interior Designer Degree Programs
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to receive the training necessary to begin your new profession in Boaz AL. Your decision will no doubt be motivated by your career objectives in addition to the time and money that you have to devote to your education. But no matter which degree program you opt to enroll in, make certain to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in some states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum level of training required to enter the field. They take about two years to finish 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 extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative facets of the business 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 provide advanced training in design after achieving the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer options in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are largely for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are usually completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing examination.
Interior Design Online Classes
For individuals who wish to attend classes in the convenience of their Boaz AL homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a good alternative 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 laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For a number of students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design programs are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Additional costs for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the college you enroll in is accredited by a respected accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design program may be the ideal alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Designer Programs
Once you have decided on the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the school needs to be within commuting distance from your Boaz AL home. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The expense for tuition will narrow down your choices also. But picking the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the best ways to make your decision. There are other variables that you should look at also, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the schools you are considering to obtain those answers in addition to others in order to help you assess and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It’s important to verify that the interior design college and program that you select has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. 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 gone through a rigorous evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just verify that both the degree program and the college 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 education are outstanding, it might also help when applying for financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Boaz AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level positions.
Does the College Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do require that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States calling for licensing, a minimum of 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So aside from providing an outstanding education, the Boaz AL school you enroll in should also furnish the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ exam and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design profession and its students are in demand. It might also indicate that the college has a substantial network of Boaz AL business connections where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Boaz AL schools you are looking at and ask what kind of support they provide. A number of interior designer programs offer financial assistance to their incoming students. Some schools offer partial scholarships while others provide support in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Boaz AL colleges you are looking at what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Boaz home, go to the school and attend 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 styles are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, make sure that the interior designer program you choose offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly significant if you plan to continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Boaz AL, verify that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only enroll part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Boaz AL?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Boaz Alabama area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Boaz is a city in Marshall and Etowah counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. It is part of the Gadsden, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2010 census, the city's population was 9,551. Boaz is known for its outlet shops.
First settled in the 1850s, the town of Boaz was officially founded November 11, 1878 by the Sparks Family of Georgia. A post office has been in operation since 1887. The city was named after Boaz, from the Bible. It was incorporated in 1897.
The Julia Street Memorial United Methodist Church, Snead Junior College Historic District, the Thomas A. Snellgrove Homestead, and the Edward Fenns Whitman House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Alabama Register of Landmarks and Heritage lists the Boaz Elementary School, the First Baptist Church and Cemetery, and the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.
Pick the Right Interior Design School near Boaz AL
Selecting the right interior designer program is a crucial initial step toward launching your career in this creative and fulfilling profession. Locating a college where you will obtain your training and develop your talents in a particular area of study is a difficult job regardless of what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to receive a higher education, there are many points to consider before enrolling in a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design school are both accredited and highly regarded in the profession. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in How To Get Into Interior Design. However it is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Boaz AL.
More Designer Locations in Alabama