Home >> Arizona >> Goodyear >> Interior Design Courses


Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Goodyear AZ

How to Choose the Right Interior Designer Program

Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior design college near Goodyear AZ, it's time to start the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential interiors, it's imperative that you receive the appropriate training to put your talents to work. And since a number of states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing exam also. So it's vital that you carry out the appropriate research so that you can analyze and compare each program that you are looking at prior to making your final selection. But exactly where do you start? A number of prospective students will start their research by looking for interior design courses near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are relevant factors when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation must be considered also. We will address those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are reviewing 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 available.

Start Your Interior Design Career By Requesting Free Info on Local Schools Below

Interior Decoration and Interior Design

interior designed living room in Goodyear AZ

Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design. The main difference between the two is the amount of training required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, working as an interior designer requires formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or living spaces attractive as well as functional. On some projects they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are 2 general categories that an interior designer in Goodyear AZ can specialize in:

  • Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently 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 particular room, for instance bathrooms or kitchens.
  • Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public spaces, designers frequently focus predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are areas where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the main concern.

There are several areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer must learn, for example lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They must be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From selecting wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui concepts, Goodyear Arizona interior designers employ a wide range of skills that help bring about their final designs.
 

Interior Design Degrees

There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to get the training necessary to begin your new profession in Goodyear AZ. Your selection will undoubtedly be motivated by your career objectives as well as the money and time that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you decide to enroll in, make sure to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.

  • Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of education needed to enter the field. They take about two years to finish and programs are available at many Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can normally qualify for entry level jobs as design assistants.
  • Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are 4 year programs that furnish more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical aspects of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level position as an interior designer.
  • Master's Degree. These 2 year programs provide advanced design training after achieving a Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer options in specialty majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees 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 professionally and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", many states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of professional experience may be called for before an applicant can sit for the licensing exam.

Topics to Ask Interior Design Programs

Goodyear Arizona interior designer bathroomNow that you have selected the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of analyzing your school options. Location will be a critical issue, especially if the college has to be within driving distance from your Goodyear AZ home. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will narrow down your choices as well. But picking the most affordable school or the one that is closest to your house are not the best ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you should consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the program. Following are a few concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you examine and subsequently pick the right degree program.

Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It's essential to verify that the interior designer school and program that you choose has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their programs and teachers. Just verify that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Goodyear Arizona employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.

Does the Program Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of 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 school. And in several of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. So besides providing an exceptional education, the Goodyear AZ program you select should also furnish the proper training to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy 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 designer certification, you will undoubtedly want some support in finding your first position. 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 higher rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design trade and its graduates are in demand. It may also indicate that the school has a large network of Goodyear AZ business relationships where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Goodyear AZ schools you are reviewing and find out what type of assistance they offer. Many of interior designer colleges provide financial aid to their incoming students. Some colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that choosing an accredited school is essential for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a school that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.

How Large are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Goodyear AZ programs you are reviewing what their typical teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Goodyear home, visit the campus and attend a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer school you enroll in offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly significant if you will continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Goodyear AZ, make certain that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, confirm that is an alternative also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.

Enroll in the Best Interior Designer College near Goodyear Arizona

interior designed kitchen in Goodyear ArizonaChoosing the right interior designer college is a critical first step toward starting your career in this artistic and rewarding occupation. Finding a college where you will obtain your training and develop your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to receive a higher education, there are several factors to think about before selecting a school, program, or course. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the business. However it is still essential that you carry out your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to properly assess and compare interior design programs so that you can make the appropriate ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Goodyear Arizona.