How to Select the Right Interior Design College Senatobia 38668
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Senatobia MS, 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 important that you obtain the appropriate training to put your natural abilities to work. And since a number of states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing exam also. So it’s vital that you do the proper research in order to assess and compare each program that you are reviewing before you make your final selection. But just where do you start? A number of future students will begin their research by looking for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While location and cost are important issues when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation must be taken into consideration also. We will discuss those topics and other important questions that you must ask 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 training alternatives are available.
Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Many people mistake interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The principal difference between them is the level of training required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, conducting business as an interior designer necessitates 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 residential areas attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may team up with building engineers and architects. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Senatobia MS can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers typically 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 particular room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Design. 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 reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might focus more on functionality over looks as the primary consideration.
There are numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. Designers need to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to including Feng shui principles, Senatobia MS interior designers implement a wide range of skills that help bring about their final designs.
Interior Design Training Programs
There are 4 degree options available in interior design to obtain the training needed to launch your new career in Senatobia MS. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career goals as well as the money and time that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in several states. More will be discussed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are short 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 about two years to finish and programs are offered at a number of Mississippi vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can normally obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that supply more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical components of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs supply advanced training in design after achieving the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer options in specialty majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mostly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are usually completed in 3 to 5 years.
In order to work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of field experience may be needed before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Design Online Degree Programs
For individuals who wish to study in the comfort of their Senatobia MS homes, there are accredited online interior design classes. Studying online can be a good alternative for those students that are employed or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be accessed on a laptop or a personal computer when convenient for the student. For a number of students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design programs are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be decreased or eliminated as well. Just make certain that the school you enroll in is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on distance or online learning. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design college may be the ideal option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges
When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can start the task of reviewing your school options. Location will be a critical issue, particularly if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Senatobia MS home. Obviously if you are interested in attending an online school, or are willing to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will decrease your options also. But choosing the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you should look at also, including the reputation and accreditation of the program. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the programs you are considering to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you assess and ultimately choose the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It’s imperative to verify that the interior design program and college that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a regional or national agency. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a demanding evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just confirm 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 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 offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Senatobia MS employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the College Prepare 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) examination as well as a degree from an accredited program. And in several of those States mandating licensing, two or more years of occupational experience may be required also. So aside from furnishing an outstanding education, the Senatobia MS school you select should also furnish the appropriate instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Mississippi or the State where you will be working.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and earned your interior design certification, you will probably want some help in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good sign that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It could also indicate that the school has a substantial network of Senatobia MS business contacts where they can place students to secure internships or employment after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Contact the financial aid departments for the Senatobia MS colleges you are looking at and ask what kind of assistance they offer. Many of interior design schools offer financial aid to their incoming students. Certain schools provide partial scholarships while others provide support in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its competitors because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Senatobia MS colleges you are reviewing what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Senatobia home, visit the college 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 styles are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior design school you choose offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly significant if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Senatobia MS, confirm that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an alternative as well. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.
Enrolling in an Interior Design School near Senatobia MS?
Perhaps you are considering attending an interior design degree program in the Senatobia Mississippi area. If so, you may find the following information about the location of your new school campus interesting and informative.
Senatobia is the home of Northwest Mississippi Community College, a state community college that provides two-year academic and technical degree programs. Northwest's system-wide enrollment exceeds 8,000 on three campuses in Senatobia, Southaven and Oxford. Also located in Senatobia is the Baddour Center, a residential care facility for intellectually disabled adults.
On April 13, 1834 early settler James Peters purchased two sections of land from the Chickasaw Nation for the sum of $1.25 per acre. This land was later developed as the town of Senatobia. The name Senatobia, given by Charles Meriweather, was derived from the Indian word Senatohoba, which means "White Sycamore"—a symbol of "rest for the weary."
Senatobia received its charter as a municipality in 1860. Tate County was organized in 1873, during the Reconstruction era. During the Civil War, the town's business section was burned twice by Federal troops.
Find the Best Interior Design School near Senatobia MS
Selecting the right interior designer program is an important initial step toward launching your career in this artistic and gratifying profession. Finding a school where you will obtain your education and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging task regardless of what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to receive a higher education, there are a number of factors to think about before choosing a course, program or school. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design school are both accredited and highly respected in the profession. You originally came upon this website because you had an initial interest in Interior Design College Courses. However it is still imperative that you conduct your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design schools so that you can make the right ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Senatobia MS.
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