Home >> California >> Apple Valley >> Interior Design Courses Online


Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Apple Valley CA

How to Pick the Best Interior Designer Course

Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near Apple Valley CA, it's time to start the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial spaces, it's imperative that you obtain the proper training to put your skills to work. And since several states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing examination also. So it's crucial that you carry out the appropriate research so that you can evaluate and compare each program that you are considering before you make your final selection. But where do you start? A number of potential students will kick off their research by looking for interior design programs near their residence and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are key issues when making a decision, they are by no means the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation should be considered also. We will discuss those topics and other crucial questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are looking at 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 choices are offered.

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

Interior Design and Interior Decoration

interior designed living room in Apple Valley CA

Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design. The key difference between the two is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have 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 Associate or Bachelor's Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make living or work areas attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are two broad areas that an interior designer in Apple Valley CA can specialize in:

  • Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any area of the home, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
  • Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public spaces, designers normally focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may focus more on functionality over looks as the primary consideration.

There are various areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. Designers have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to incorporating Feng shui principles, Apple Valley California interior designers implement a wide variety of skills that contribute to their ultimate creations.
 

Interior Designer Degree Options

There are 4 degree alternatives offered in interior design to receive the training required to launch your new profession in Apple Valley CA. Your selection will no doubt be motivated by your career goals as well as the money and time that you have to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you opt to enroll in, make certain to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in several states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.

  • Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of training required to enter the field. They take about 2 years to finish and programs are available at numerous California trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can usually obtain entry level positions as design assistants.
  • Bachelor's Degree. Bachelor's degrees are four year programs that supply more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the trade required to become a designer. They are the lowest credential needed by a graduating student in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
  • Master's Degree. These two year programs provide advanced design training after acquiring the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees provide options in specialty majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are largely 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 three to five years.

In order to work professionally and use the title of "Interior Designer", many states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of professional experience may be needed before an applicant can take the licensing exam.

Why Do You Want to Be an Interior Designer?

Apple Valley CA 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.

What to Ask Interior Designer Schools

When you have selected the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of assessing your school options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the campus has to be within commuting distance from your Apple Valley CA home. Naturally if you are interested in attending an online school, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will decrease your options as well. But picking the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your house are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you need to look at as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the college. Below are a few concerns that you may want to ask the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and ultimately choose the right degree program.

Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's necessary to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you select has earned accreditation from 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). Colleges obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their teachers and programs. Just confirm 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 confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are excellent, it might also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Apple Valley California employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.

Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do mandate that interior designers get licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States mandating licensing, at least 2 years of work experience may be required as well. So besides furnishing an outstanding education, the Apple Valley CA college you select should also furnish the proper education to pass the NCIDQ exam and fulfill the minimum licensing requirements for California or the State where you will be employed.

What is the College's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job placement 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 highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its graduates are in demand. It might also indicate that the school has a substantial network of Apple Valley CA business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Apple Valley CA colleges you are looking at and ask what kind of support they provide. Many of interior designer schools provide financial assistance to their new students. Some colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide help in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.

How Small are the Classrooms? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Apple Valley CA colleges you are considering what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Apple Valley home, go to the school 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 experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior designer program you choose provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly significant if you plan to continue working while going to college. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Apple Valley CA, verify that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, confirm that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the process is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.

Enroll in the Best Interior Designer Program near Apple Valley California

interior designed kitchen in Apple Valley CaliforniaPicking the ideal interior design school is an important initial step toward launching your career in this creative and rewarding occupation. Searching for a school where you will receive your training and develop your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging job regardless of what major you have selected. As with any endeavor to acquire an advanced education, there are many factors to consider before selecting a school, program, or course. At a minimum, verify that the program and design school are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. However it is still imperative that you conduct your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare interior design schools so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Apple Valley California.