Topics to Ask Interior Design Programs
Once you have decided on the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the task of evaluating your college options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the campus needs to be within commuting distance from your Indian Springs Village AL home. Naturally if you have decided on attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will limit your choices also. But selecting the most affordable college or the one that is closest to home are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other things that you need to consider as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the school. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the schools you are looking at to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you examine and ultimately pick the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's imperative to make sure that the interior design college and program that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a regional or national agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Not only will it help establish that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are exceptional, it may also help when applying for financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, many Indian Springs Village AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited school. And in several of those States mandating licensing, 2 or more years of work experience may be required as well. Therefore besides furnishing an excellent education, the Indian Springs Village AL college you choose should also furnish the proper training to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and earned your interior designer certification, you will no doubt want some support in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is an excellent indication 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 college has a substantial network of Indian Springs Village AL business relationships where they can place students to secure internships or employment after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the Indian Springs Village AL schools you are reviewing and ask what type of aid they offer. A number of interior design programs provide financial aid to their incoming students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in acquiring federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Large are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you probably will receive little individual attention from the teachers. Ask the Indian Springs Village AL schools you are considering what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Indian Springs Village home, visit the campus and attend 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 styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer college you select offers classes the fit your active schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending college. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Indian Springs Village AL, confirm that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an alternative as well. Finally, ask what the process is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.