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Topics to Ask Interior Design Colleges

When you have chosen the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the college has to be within driving distance from your Bellflower CA home. Of course if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your options also. But selecting the most affordable college or the one that is closest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you should consider as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the school. Below are a few questions that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others to help you compare and subsequently pick the ideal degree program.

Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's essential to confirm that the interior designer college 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 obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just confirm that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it might also help when applying for financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Bellflower California employers will only employ graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, a number of 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 college. And in several of those States calling for licensing, two or more years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore aside from providing an outstanding education, the Bellflower CA college you enroll in should also furnish the suitable training to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for California or the State where you will be working.

What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and obtained your interior design certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good sign that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its graduates are sought after. It might also signify that the school has a significant network of Bellflower CA business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Aid Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Bellflower CA colleges you are looking at and find out what kind of aid they provide. Many of interior design programs provide financial aid to their incoming students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide support in securing federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.

How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Bellflower CA colleges you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Bellflower home, go to the campus and sit in on a few classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior design school you enroll in offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Bellflower CA, confirm that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an option also. Finally, check what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.