How to Choose the Right Interior Designer Program Barstow 92311
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior designer college near Barstow CA, it’s time to begin the process of choosing a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential interiors, it’s important that you receive the right training to put your talents to work. And since several states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need training to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s very important that you carry out the proper research in order to analyze and compare each program that you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection. But just where do you begin? Many potential students will begin their research by searching for interior design colleges near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are important factors when making a determination, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be considered also. We will discuss those issues and other vital questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But before we do, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class alternatives are available.
Interior Design vs Interior Decoration
Often people confuse interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The principal difference between them is the amount of training required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. However, conducting business as an interior designer requires formal training and in a number of states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or living areas attractive as well as functional. On various occasions they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are two general areas that an interior designer in Barstow CA may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers often work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. When working on commercial or public areas, designers often concentrate primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For instance, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may focus more on functionality over appearance as the main concern.
There are various areas of residential and commercial 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 choosing carpeting and wall paper to incorporating Feng shui principles, Barstow CA interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final creations.
Interior Design Training Programs
There are four degree options available in interior design to acquire the training required to begin your new career in Barstow CA. Your selection will undoubtedly be motivated 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 choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in a number of states. More will be discussed on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.
- 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 offered at a number of California community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that furnish more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components 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 position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs provide advanced training in design after acquiring the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer alternatives in specialty majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mainly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs differ in length but are normally completed in three to five years.
To work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of field experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Designer Classes
For individuals who wish to study in the comfort of their Barstow CA homes, there are online accredited interior design programs. Studying online can be an excellent solution for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make attending classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be accessed on a laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For a number of students online colleges may be the only option if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Added costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be minimized or eliminated also. Just make sure that the college you choose is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the discipline to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design program may be the ideal alternative for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Once you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the process of assessing your school options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the college must be within commuting distance from your Barstow CA residence. Of course if you have decided on attending an online school, or are willing to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices also. But picking the cheapest college or the one that is closest to home are not the best ways to make your decision. There are other things that you need to look at as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you assess and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It’s essential to verify that the interior design program and college that you choose has been accredited by either a regional or national 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 gone through a demanding evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Barstow CA employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the Program Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, 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 in addition to a degree from an accredited school. And in some of those States requiring licensing, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore in addition to furnishing an outstanding education, the Barstow CA college you choose should also provide the suitable instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for California 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 want some assistance 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 held in high esteem within the interior design field and its graduates are sought after. It may also indicate that the college has a significant network of Barstow CA business connections where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Contact the financial assistance offices for the Barstow CA schools you are evaluating and find out what kind of support they offer. Many of interior design schools offer financial aid to their new students. Various schools offer partial scholarships while others provide assistance in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Barstow CA colleges you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Barstow home, go to the school and monitor a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior designer program you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Barstow CA, verify that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, confirm that is an option also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Barstow CA?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Barstow California area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Barstow is a major transportation center for the Inland Empire. Several major highways including Interstate 15, Interstate 40, California State Route 58, and U.S. Route 66 converge in the city. It is the site of a large rail classification yard, belonging to the BNSF Railway. The Union Pacific Railroad also runs through town using trackage rights on BNSF's main line to Daggett 10 miles (16 km) east, from where it heads to Salt Lake City and the BNSF heads to Chicago. Barstow is about 15 miles (24 km) from Yermo, 30 miles (48 km) from Victorville, 62 miles (100 km) from Baker, California and 114 miles (183 km) from Primm, Nevada. Barstow serves as a midway point for drivers traveling between Los Angeles, California (120 miles (190 km) southwest) and Las Vegas, Nevada (150 miles (240 km) northeast).
The settlement of Barstow began in the late 1830s in the Mormon Corridor. Every fall and winter, as the weather cooled, the rain produced new grass growth and replenished the water sources in the Mojave Desert. People, goods and animal herds would move from New Mexico and later Utah to Los Angeles, along the Old Spanish Trail from Santa Fe, or after 1848, on the Mormon Road from Salt Lake City. Trains of freight wagons traveled back to Salt Lake City and other points in the interior. These travelers followed the course of the Mojave River, watering and camping at Fish Ponds on its south bank (west of Nebo Center) or 3.625 miles up river on the north bank, at a riverside grove of willows and cottonwoods, festooned with wild grapes, called Grapevines (later the site of North Barstow). In 1859, the Mojave Road followed a route was established from Los Angeles to Fort Mojave through Grapevines that linked eastward with the Beale Wagon Road across northern New Mexico Territory to Santa Fe.
Indian troubles with the Paiute, Mojave and Chemehuevi tribes followed and from 1860 Camp Cady, a U.S. Army post 20 miles (32 km) east of Barstow, was occupied sporadically until 1864, then permanently, by soldiers occupying other posts on the Mojave Road or patrolling in the region until 1871. Trading posts were established at Grapevines and Fish Ponds that supplied travelers on the roads and increasingly the miners that came into the Mohave Desert after the end of hostilities with the native people.
Pick the Best Interior Design School near Barstow CA
Choosing the ideal interior design college is an important initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and fulfilling profession. Finding a school where you will obtain your training and cultivate your skills in a specific area of study is a difficult job regardless of what field you have selected. As with any endeavor to attain an advanced education, there are a number of factors to consider before selecting a program, course or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Accredited Interior Design Courses. But it is still important that you conduct your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare interior design programs so that you can make the ideal final selection. And with superior training and your determination to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer in Barstow CA.
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