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Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Bullhead City AZ

How to Enroll in the Best Interior Design School

Once you have made a decision to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Bullhead City AZ, it's time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial interiors, it's imperative that you get the proper training to put your talents to work. And since some states do require that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing exam also. So it's vital that you perform the appropriate research in order to analyze and compare each school that you are looking at prior to making your final choice. But exactly where do you start? Some future students will launch their research by looking for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are important issues when making a determination, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation need to be taken into account as well. We will cover 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 cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training alternatives are offered.

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Interior Decoration compared to Interior Design

interior designed living room in Bullhead City AZ

Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration. The key distinction between the two is the level of education required. Anyone can do business as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. On the other hand, working as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor's Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make living or work areas attractive as well as functional. On many projects they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Bullhead City AZ can specialize in:

  • Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
  • Commercial Design. When dealing with commercial or public areas, designers frequently focus primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may focus more on functionality over looks as the main concern.

There are various areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, such as lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. Designers need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui concepts, Bullhead City Arizona interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that contribute to their ultimate creations.
 

Interior Designer Degree Options

There are four degree alternatives available in interior design to obtain the training required to begin your new career in Bullhead City AZ. Your selection will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to devote to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, make sure to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in a number of states. More will be discussed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Below are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.

  • Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of training required to enter the profession. They take about two years to complete and programs are available at numerous Arizona trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can typically obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
  • Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are four year programs that deliver more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the business required to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain 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 choices in specialized majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are primarily for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs differ in length but are usually completed in three to five years.

To work as a professional and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", many states mandate that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can sit for the licensing examination.

Why Do You Want to Be an Interior Designer?

Bullhead City 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 Colleges

After you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the task of evaluating your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the campus has to be within driving distance from your Bullhead City AZ home. Of course if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your options as well. But choosing the most affordable school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you should consider also, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers as well as others to help you compare and subsequently pick the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's imperative to make sure that the interior designer program and college that you select has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have undergone an extensive evaluation of their teachers and programs. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify 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 accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Bullhead City Arizona employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.

Does the College Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States calling for licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required as well. So aside from providing an excellent education, the Bullhead City AZ college you choose should also furnish the proper education to pass the NCIDQ exam and fulfill the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be working.

What is the College's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and obtained your interior design certification, you will probably want some support in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are reviewing 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 school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design profession and its graduates are in demand. It could also indicate that the school has a significant network of Bullhead City AZ business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Contact the financial aid departments for the Bullhead City AZ colleges you are looking at and find out what type of assistance they provide. A number of interior designer colleges offer financial aid to their new students. Certain schools offer partial scholarships and others provide assistance in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that selecting an accredited school is essential for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its competitors because they offer more generous financial aid.

How Large are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Bullhead City AZ schools you are reviewing what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Bullhead City home, visit the school and monitor 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 styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior design college you select offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Bullhead City AZ, make sure that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an alternative as well. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.

Enroll in the Best Interior Designer Program near Bullhead City Arizona

interior designed kitchen in Bullhead City ArizonaChoosing the right interior designer school is a critical initial step toward starting your career in this creative and fulfilling profession. Finding a college where you will obtain your training and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a difficult task regardless of what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to attain an advanced education, there are several points to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. But it is still essential that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design schools so that you can make the ideal final selection. And with superior training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Bullhead City Arizona.