Topics to Ask Interior Design Colleges
Once you have selected the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of reviewing your school options. Location will be a critical factor, especially if the school must be within driving distance from your Munford AL home. Of course if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will limit your choices also. But picking the most affordable school or the one that is closest to home are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you need to consider as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a list of concerns that you may want to address with the colleges you are reviewing to get those answers in addition to others to help you examine and subsequently choose the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design College Accredited? It's imperative to make sure that the interior design program and college that you enroll in has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most respected in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the training are exceptional, it may also help when applying for financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Munford AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, some 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 college. And in several of those States calling for licensing, 2 or more years of work experience may be required as well. Therefore aside from providing an exceptional education, the Munford AL college you choose should also provide the appropriate education to pass the NCIDQ exam and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the School's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will probably need some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the school and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It might also signify that the school has a significant network of Munford AL business relationships where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the Munford AL colleges you are looking at and ask what type of assistance they provide. Many of interior design schools offer financial assistance to their new students. Some colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide help in obtaining federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited college is important for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive little individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Munford AL programs you are considering what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Munford home, visit the college and attend a few classes. While there speak with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Accessible that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer school you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Munford AL, verify that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm that is an alternative also. Finally, find out what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.