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Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Queen Creek AZ

How to Pick the Best Interior Designer Program

Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior design school near Queen Creek AZ, it's time to start the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial spaces, it's essential that you receive the proper training to put your talents to work. And since several states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing examination as well. So it's crucial that you carry out the appropriate research in order to assess and compare each college that you are looking at prior to making your final decision. But just where do you begin? Many potential students will kick off their research by searching for interior design courses near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are important factors when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be taken into consideration as well. We will cover those issues and other vital questions that you should be asking 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 class options are offered.

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Interior Decoration compared to Interior Design

interior designed living room in Queen Creek AZ

Many people mistake interior decoration for interior design. The key difference between them is the level of training required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. However, conducting business as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or living spaces functional as well as attractive. On various projects they may team up with building engineers and architects. There are 2 general categories that an interior designer in Queen Creek AZ can specialize in:

  • Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any room of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
  • Commercial Designing. When working on public or commercial areas, designers often concentrate predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the primary consideration.

There are numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. They must be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Queen Creek Arizona interior designers implement a wide variety of skills that help bring about their ultimate creations.
 

Interior Designer Degree Options

There are four degree options available in interior design to get the training needed to launch your new profession in Queen Creek AZ. Your decision will no doubt be influenced by your career objectives 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, make certain to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated 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 education needed to enter the profession. They take roughly 2 years to finish and programs are offered at numerous Arizona trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level employment 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 creative and technical 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 position as an interior designer.
  • Master's Degree. These two year programs supply advanced design training after achieving a Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees offer choices in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are mainly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are normally completed in three to five years.

In order to work professionally and adopt the title of "Interior Designer", a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.

Topics to Ask Interior Designer Schools

Queen Creek Arizona interior designer bathroomWhen you have selected the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of reviewing your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the school has to be within driving distance from your Queen Creek AZ home. Obviously if you have decided on attending a school online, or are willing to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualification. The expense for tuition will decrease your options as well. But picking the most affordable school or the one that is closest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other things that you should consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to ask the programs you are considering to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you compare and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's necessary to confirm that the interior design program and college that you select has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when applying for financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Queen Creek Arizona employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of States do require that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those States requiring licensing, a minimum of 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore aside from providing an exceptional education, the Queen Creek AZ program you choose should also furnish the suitable training to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be working.

What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will probably want some support in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are reviewing if they have a job assistance program. If yes, ask 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 profession and its students are in demand. It might also indicate that the college has a substantial network of Queen Creek AZ business connections where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Contact the financial aid offices for the Queen Creek AZ colleges you are reviewing and find out what type of assistance they provide. Many of interior designer schools provide financial aid to their new students. Various schools provide partial scholarships and others provide assistance in securing federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that selecting an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Small are the Classrooms? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Queen Creek AZ colleges you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Queen Creek home, visit the college and monitor a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some 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 Available that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior design college you select offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially important if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Queen Creek AZ, confirm that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only enroll part-time, verify that is an option as well. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.

Choose the Best Interior Design College near Queen Creek Arizona

interior designed kitchen in Queen Creek ArizonaPicking the right interior designer college is a crucial first step toward launching your career in this artistic and fulfilling profession. Searching for a school where you will receive your training and cultivate your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging task regardless of what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to acquire an advanced education, there are several factors to think about before choosing a course, program or school. At a minimum, check that the program and design school are both accredited and highly respected in the business. However it is still important that you conduct your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations provided in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with excellent training and your desire to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer in Queen Creek Arizona.