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Questions to Ask Interior Designer Schools

After you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the school needs to be within driving distance from your Bentonville AR home. Of course if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will narrow down your options also. But picking the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you should look at as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the program. Below are a list of questions that you may want to ask the colleges you are looking at to get those answers as well as others to help you examine and subsequently choose the ideal degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior design school and program that you enroll in has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their programs and teachers. Just confirm 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 verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are excellent, it may also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, many Bentonville Arkansas employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do mandate that interior designers become 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 program. And in several of those States mandating licensing, a minimum of 2 years of work experience may be required also. Therefore in addition to providing an excellent education, the Bentonville AR program you enroll in should also provide the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Arkansas or the State where you will be working.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior designer certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good sign that the school and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It could also signify that the school has a substantial network of Bentonville AR business relationships where they can place students to secure internships or employment after graduation.

Is Financial Assistance Provided? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the Bentonville AR schools you are reviewing and ask what type of support they provide. A number of interior designer schools provide financial aid to their new students. Certain schools offer partial scholarships while others provide support in obtaining federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Large are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Bentonville AR schools you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Bentonville home, go to the campus and sit in on a couple of classes. While there speak with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their credentials are in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make certain that the interior designer college you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Bentonville AR, verify that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, check that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.