Topics to Ask Interior Design Schools
When you have chosen the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the task of reviewing your school options. Location will be an important factor, particularly if the college must be within driving distance from your Weaver AL home. Naturally if you have decided on attending an online school, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will decrease your choices also. But choosing the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house are not the optimal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you should look at also, including the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are considering to obtain those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and ultimately choose the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer School Accredited? It's important to make sure that the interior designer school and program that you select has earned accreditation from 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). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their programs and teachers. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the college 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 accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Weaver AL employers will only employ graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the College Prepare you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require that interior designers get 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 college. And in some of those States requiring licensing, a minimum of 2 years of occupational experience may be required as well. Therefore aside from furnishing an outstanding education, the Weaver AL program you enroll in should also provide the suitable instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be employed.
What is the Program's Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will undoubtedly want some support in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent sign that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its students are sought after. It could also signify that the college has a significant network of Weaver AL business contacts where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Weaver AL schools you are reviewing and ask what type of assistance they offer. A number of interior designer colleges offer financial aid to their incoming students. Some schools offer partial scholarships while others provide support in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that enrolling in an accredited program is imperative for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be less expensive than its counterparts because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Large are the Classes? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Weaver AL colleges you are reviewing what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Weaver home, visit the school and sit in on 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 styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior design school you select provides classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Weaver AL, make sure that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, check that is an option also. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.