Topics to Ask Interior Design Programs
Now that 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 factor, especially if the college needs to be within commuting distance from your East Brewton AL home. Of course if you have decided on attending a school online, or are prepared to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices as well. But selecting the cheapest college or the one that is closest to your residence are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other things that you need to consider as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a few concerns that you may want to address with the schools you are considering to get those answers as well as others to help you examine and ultimately choose the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's essential to verify that the interior design school and program that you choose has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their teachers and programs. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are exceptional, it may also help when securing financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, many East Brewton AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the School Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do require that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam as well as a degree from an accredited school. And in some of those States requiring licensing, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore aside from furnishing an outstanding education, the East Brewton AL college you select should also furnish the proper education to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and obtained your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly need some support in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design field and its graduates are sought after. It may also signify that the college has a large network of East Brewton AL business connections where they can place students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the East Brewton AL colleges you are looking at and find out what type of support they offer. Many of interior design schools offer financial aid to their new students. Various colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide help in securing grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that choosing an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a college that has a higher tuition may actually be less expensive than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classrooms? Small classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive little individual attention from the teachers. Ask the East Brewton AL colleges you are reviewing what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your East Brewton home, go to the campus and monitor a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to talk with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior design school you select offers classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near East Brewton AL, confirm that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative as well. Finally, find out what the process is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.