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Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges

Once you have selected the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can start the task of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the school must be within commuting distance from your Beverly Hills CA residence. Obviously if you have decided on attending an online school, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will limit your options also. But choosing the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other things that you should look at as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others in order to help you compare and subsequently select the ideal degree program.

Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's imperative to make sure that the interior design program and school that you select has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. 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 undergone a demanding assessment of their programs and instructors. Just make sure 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 verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it may also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Beverly Hills California employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.

Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several 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 program. And in some of those States calling for licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So in addition to furnishing an exceptional education, the Beverly Hills CA school you choose should also provide the proper 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 received your interior design certification, you will probably want some support in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication that the school and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It might also signify that the school has a significant network of Beverly Hills CA business contacts where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after they graduate.

Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the Beverly Hills CA schools you are reviewing and ask what type of support they offer. A number of interior designer programs provide financial assistance to their new students. Certain schools offer partial scholarships and others provide help in acquiring grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.

How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive limited individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Beverly Hills CA schools you are considering what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Beverly Hills home, go to 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 approaches are and what their experiences have been in interior design.

Are Classes Accessible that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior design program you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly significant if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Beverly Hills CA, make certain that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an option as well. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.