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Subjects to Ask Interior Design Programs

When you have chosen the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the campus has to be within driving distance from your Florence AL 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 qualification. The expense for tuition will decrease your options also. But selecting the cheapest college or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you should look at also, including the reputation and accreditation of the program. Below are a list of questions that you may want to ask the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you examine and subsequently choose the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It's essential to verify that the interior design program and college that you choose has earned accreditation from either a national or regional organization. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have undergone an extensive evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just verify 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 verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it might also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Florence Alabama employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States mandating licensing, 2 or more years of work experience may be required also. So aside from furnishing an excellent education, the Florence AL school you select should also furnish the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum licensing requirements 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 undoubtedly want some help in finding your first job. Ask the colleges 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 an excellent indication that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its students are sought after. It may also indicate that the school has a sizable network of Florence AL business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or employment after they graduate.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Florence AL schools you are reviewing and find out what type of aid they offer. A number of interior design schools provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Certain colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide assistance in securing federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that choosing an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.

How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Florence AL colleges you are considering what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Florence home, visit the school and attend 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 philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make sure that the interior design school you choose provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Florence AL, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an option as well. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.