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Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Buckeye AZ

How to Choose the Right Interior Designer School

Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior design college near Buckeye AZ, it's time to begin the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential interiors, it's imperative that you get the proper training to put your natural abilities to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing examination also. So it's crucial that you do the appropriate research so that you can evaluate and compare each program that you are looking at prior to making your final choice. But just where do you start? A number of future students will launch their research by looking for interior design courses near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are key issues when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation must be taken into account as well. We will discuss those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are looking at later in this article. But first, let's cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class options are available.

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Interior Design compared to Interior Decoration

interior designed living room in Buckeye AZ

Often people mistake interior decoration for interior design. The main distinction between the two is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. However, working as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in a number of states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor's Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or residential areas functional as well as attractive. On many projects they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are two broad categories that an interior designer in Buckeye AZ can specialize in:

  • Residential Design. Interior Designers often work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any room of the home, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
  • Commercial Designing. When working on commercial or public spaces, designers often concentrate primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. As an example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main concern.

There are many areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, including color schemes, lighting, furniture and acoustics. They have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui principles, Buckeye Arizona interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that contribute to their ultimate creations.
 

Interior Design Training Programs

There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to get the training needed to begin your new career in Buckeye AZ. Your choice will undoubtedly be driven by your career goals in addition to the money and time that you have to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you opt to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are brief descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.

  • Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design supply the minimum amount of education needed to enter the field. They take about two years to complete and programs are available at numerous Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can normally obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
  • Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are four year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the business required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level job 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 for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a university or college level. The programs vary in length but are generally completed in three to five years.

In order to work as a professional and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of field experience may be needed before an applicant can take the licensing exam.

Why Do You Want to Be an Interior Designer?

Buckeye AZ student attending interior design school onlineThere are many options available to you once you graduate and enter the field of interior design.  If you’ve got an entrepreneurial spirit you may become self-employed and open your own interior design shop. You might also work for a small or larger design firm. Designers have careers creating interiors for businesses, hospitals, government buildings, as well as private residences. Rarely is a design career a 9 to 5 job. You’ll need to be flexible, patient, and persistent to get your career off the ground. But you will have the opportunity to earn an attractive income as well as the personal satisfaction of creating beautiful living and working spaces.

What to Ask Interior Design Schools

When you have decided on the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can start the task of reviewing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the campus needs to be within driving distance from your Buckeye AZ residence. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The cost of tuition will limit your options also. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other variables that you need to look at as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately choose the right degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's imperative to make sure that the interior design program and college that you select 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 earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous assessment of their instructors and programs. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it may also help when requesting financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many Buckeye Arizona employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.

Does the College Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some States do require that interior designers become 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 school. And in several of those States mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So in addition to providing an outstanding education, the Buckeye AZ college you enroll in should also provide the appropriate education to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the State where you will be working.

What is the College's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will undoubtedly want some support in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It could also indicate that the school has a significant network of Buckeye AZ business relationships where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Buckeye AZ schools you are reviewing and ask what kind of aid they offer. A number of interior designer schools provide financial assistance to their new students. Various schools provide partial scholarships and others provide assistance in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Buckeye AZ colleges you are reviewing what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Buckeye home, visit the school and monitor a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few 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 Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior designer school you enroll in offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly significant if you plan to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Buckeye AZ, make sure that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the process is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.

Enroll in the Best Interior Designer College near Buckeye Arizona

interior designed kitchen in Buckeye ArizonaChoosing the ideal interior designer program is a crucial initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and rewarding profession. Searching for a school where you will obtain your education and develop your skills in a specific area of study is a difficult job no matter what field you have decided on. As with any undertaking to receive a higher education, there are many things to think about before enrolling in a course, program or school. At a minimum, check that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the business. But it is still essential that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the remaining suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with superior training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Buckeye Arizona.