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Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Buckeye AZ

How to Select the Best Interior Design Degree Program

Once you have decided to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Buckeye AZ, it's time to begin the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial spaces, it's important that you get the proper training to put your skills to work. And since several states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing examination also. So it's essential that you do the proper research so that you can analyze and compare each school that you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection. But just where do you begin? Some future students will start their research by looking for interior design courses near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are key factors when making a determination, they should not be the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be taken into consideration also. We will address those topics and other crucial questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are interested in later in this article. But before we do, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class alternatives are offered.

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Interior Design vs Interior Decoration

interior designed living room in Buckeye AZ

Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration. The primary difference between them is the amount of education required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a talent for decorating interior areas. However, doing business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or residential areas functional as well as attractive. On some projects they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are two broad categories that an interior designer in Buckeye AZ 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, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
  • Commercial Design. When dealing with public or commercial areas, designers normally focus primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main concern.

There are many areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. Designers have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From choosing carpeting and wall paper to integrating Feng shui concepts, Buckeye Arizona interior designers implement a wide range of skills that contribute to their final creations.
 

Interior Designer Degrees

There are four degree alternatives available in interior design to get the training necessary to begin your new profession in Buckeye AZ. Your decision will undoubtedly be motivated by your career objectives in addition to the money and time that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, make certain to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in some states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.

  • Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum amount of education required to enter the profession. They take roughly 2 years to finish and programs are available at many Arizona trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can commonly qualify for entry level jobs as design assistants.
  • Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the technical and creative aspects 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 position as an interior designer.
  • Master's Degree. These two year programs supply advanced training in design after achieving the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer choices in specialty majors in general areas such 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 programs are mostly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are usually completed in 3 to 5 years.

To work professionally and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", a number of states require that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can take the licensing examination.

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.

Topics to Ask Interior Design Schools

Once you have selected the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of reviewing your school options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the college must be within driving distance from your Buckeye AZ residence. Naturally if you have decided on attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The cost of tuition will limit your options as well. But choosing the most affordable college or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you need to consider as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the school. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the colleges you are looking at to get those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately pick the ideal degree program.

Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It's important to verify that the interior design program and school that you choose has earned accreditation from either a regional or national organization. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a demanding assessment of their teachers and programs. Just confirm 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 confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are outstanding, it may also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Buckeye Arizona employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.

Does the Program Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of States do mandate that interior designers get 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 college. And in several of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore in addition to providing an excellent education, the Buckeye AZ school you choose should also furnish the appropriate instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be employed.

What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will no doubt want some help in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It might also indicate that the college has a substantial network of Buckeye AZ business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Contact the financial assistance departments for the Buckeye AZ colleges you are evaluating and find out what type of aid they provide. Many of interior design colleges provide financial assistance to their new students. Certain schools provide partial scholarships and others provide assistance in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Big are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Buckeye AZ colleges you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Buckeye home, visit the school and attend a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Available that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior designer program you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Buckeye AZ, make certain that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.

Choose the Right Interior Designer School near Buckeye Arizona

interior designed kitchen in Buckeye ArizonaChoosing the right interior designer program is an important first step toward launching your career in this artistic and rewarding occupation. Searching for a college where you will receive your training and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what major you have chosen. As with any endeavor to attain an advanced education, there are a number of things to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, confirm that the design college and program are both accredited and highly respected in the business. However it is still imperative that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right final selection. And with quality training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Buckeye Arizona.