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Schools Offering Interior Design Programs near Beaumont CA

How to Enroll in the Right Interior Designer Program

Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design college near Beaumont CA, it's time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential spaces, it's essential that you get the proper training to put your natural abilities to work. And since several states do require that interior designers be licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing exam also. So it's very important that you carry out the proper research so that you can evaluate and compare each school that you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision. But where do you begin? Some future students will start their research by searching for interior design schools near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are key variables when making a decision, they should not be the sole ones. Qualifications such as accreditation and reputation should be taken into account also. We will address those topics and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are looking at later in this article. But first, let's talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training choices are available.

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Interior Design compared to Interior Decoration

interior designed living room in Beaumont CA

Many people mistake interior design for interior decoration. The main distinction between them 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 areas. However, working as an interior designer requires formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor's or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated 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 two general categories that an interior designer in Beaumont CA may specialize in:

  • Residential Design. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any room of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they can specialize in designing one specific room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
  • Commercial Design. When working on commercial or public areas, designers frequently focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality 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 hospitals and banks may focus more on functionality over looks as the primary concern.

There are several areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From selecting carpeting and wall paper to including Feng shui concepts, Beaumont California interior designers implement a wide range of skills that help bring about their final designs.
 

Interior Design Degrees

There are four degree options available in interior design to receive the training necessary to start your new career in Beaumont CA. Your decision will undoubtedly be influenced by your career objectives in addition to the time and money that you have to invest in your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in a number of states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are brief 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 approximately two years to finish and programs are available at a number of California community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can normally qualify for 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 deal with the creative and technical facets of the business required to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
  • Master's Degree. These 2 year programs supply advanced design training after acquiring the Bachelor's Degree. Master's Degrees provide alternatives in specialized majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
  • Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mostly for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are normally completed in three to five years.

In order to work as a professional and use the title of "Interior Designer", many states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be needed before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.

Online Interior Designer Colleges

Beaumont CA student attending interior design school onlineFor anyone wishing to study in the comfort of their Beaumont CA homes, there are accredited online interior design colleges. Attending classes online can be an excellent option for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when convenient for the student. For many students online colleges may be the sole alternative if no interior design schools are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the school you enroll in is accredited by a respected accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the dedication to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design school may be the ideal option for you.

Topics to Ask Interior Design Colleges

Once you have chosen the interior design degree that you would like to earn, you can start the process of analyzing your college options. Location will be a critical issue, especially if the campus must be within commuting distance from your Beaumont CA residence. Of course if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will decrease your options as well. But selecting the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you need to consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the school. Below are a few concerns that you may want to ask the programs you are reviewing to obtain those answers as well as others to help you compare and ultimately choose the appropriate degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior designer program and school that you select has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools earning accreditation from the NASAD have undergone 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 recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when requesting financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Beaumont California employers will only employ 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 require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States mandating licensing, at least 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore in addition to furnishing an exceptional education, the Beaumont CA program you select should also provide the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ exam and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for California or the State where you will be employed.

What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly need some help in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good sign that the school and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design field and its graduates are sought after. It might also signify that the school has a significant network of Beaumont CA business contacts where they can place students to obtain internships or employment after graduation.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Beaumont CA colleges you are evaluating and ask what kind of assistance they offer. A number of interior design colleges provide financial assistance to their new students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited school is essential for qualification in most cases. Often a program that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.

How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Beaumont CA colleges you are considering what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Beaumont home, visit the college and attend a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior design college you enroll in provides classes the fit your busy schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Beaumont CA, confirm that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an option also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, family or illness.

Choose the Right Interior Designer College near Beaumont California

interior designed kitchen in Beaumont CaliforniaPicking the right interior design school is a crucial first step toward launching your career in this creative and gratifying occupation. Finding a college where you will obtain your education and cultivate your talents in a specific area of study is a difficult job regardless of what field you have decided on. As with any endeavor to attain a higher education, there are many factors to consider before choosing a school, program, or course. At a minimum, check that the program and design school are both accredited and highly regarded in the business. But it is still imperative that you conduct your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the suggestions presented in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design schools so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with quality training and your desire to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Beaumont California.