How to Choose the Best Interior Design Course near Collinsville Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior designer degree program near Collinsville AL, it’s time to start the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s important that you receive the proper training to put your skills to work. And since some states do require that interior designers become licensed, depending on your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s essential that you do the proper research in order to analyze and compare each program that you are looking at prior to making your ultimate decision. But exactly where do you begin? Some future students will start their research by looking for interior design courses near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While location and cost are important factors when making a determination, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation should be taken into consideration also. We will cover those topics and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But before we do, let’s talk a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training alternatives are offered.
Start Your Interior Design Career By Requesting Free Info on Local Schools Below
Interior Design vs Interior Decoration
Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration and vice versa. The principal distinction between them is the amount of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. However, doing business as an interior designer requires formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or living spaces attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad areas that an interior designer in Collinsville AL may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently work on new construction and existing homes. They can design essentially any room of the home, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they can specialize in designing one particular room, such as kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Design. When dealing with commercial or public spaces, designers often concentrate predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the primary consideration.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to including Feng shui principles, Collinsville AL interior designers utilize a wide range of skills that help bring about their final designs.
Interior Designer Degree Options
There are four degree options offered in interior design to acquire the training necessary to start your new career in Collinsville AL. Your selection will undoubtedly be driven by your career objectives as well as the time and money that you have to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in several states. More will be addressed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum level of training needed to enter the field. They take roughly 2 years to finish and programs are offered at numerous Alabama vocational schools and community colleges. Graduates can typically qualify for entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical components of the business needed to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs provide advanced training in design after achieving a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer alternatives in specialized majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs differ in length but are normally completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before an applicant can sit for the licensing exam.
Online Interior Design Degree Programs
For those who wish to study in the convenience of their Collinsville AL homes, there are accredited online interior design degrees. Attending classes online can be an excellent alternative for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended on a laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For some students online schools may be the sole alternative if no interior design programs are within commuting distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Additional expenses for such things as study materials or commuting may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just be sure that the school you select is accredited by a respected accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the structure of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design program may be the perfect alternative for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Programs
When you have chosen the interior designer degree that you wish to earn, you can start the process of assessing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, especially if the school has to be within driving distance from your Collinsville AL residence. Of course if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to move to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The fee for tuition will limit your choices also. But choosing the cheapest college or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you should consider as well, such as the accreditation and reputation of the college. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the programs you are looking at to get those answers as well as others to help you assess and subsequently select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s necessary to confirm that the interior design program and college that you choose has been accredited by either a national or regional organization. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a demanding evaluation of their instructors 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 establish that the reputation of the college and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when obtaining financial aid or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Collinsville AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the School Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do mandate 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 several of those States mandating licensing, 2 or more years of work experience may be required as well. Therefore aside from providing an exceptional education, the Collinsville AL college you select should also furnish the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and meet the minimum requirements for licensing for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will probably want some support in finding your first position. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out 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 profession and its students are in demand. It could also signify that the school has a substantial network of Collinsville AL business contacts where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Collinsville AL schools you are reviewing and ask what type of aid they offer. Many of interior design schools provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide support in obtaining federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its competitors because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classrooms? Smaller classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive little individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Collinsville AL colleges you are reviewing what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Collinsville home, go to the school and monitor a couple of classes. Take the opportunity to speak with a few students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior designer program you select provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Collinsville AL, make certain that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative as well. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
How To Become Interior Designer Collinsville AL
Picking the ideal interior design program is an important first step toward starting your career in this artistic and gratifying occupation. Locating a school where you will receive your education and develop your skills in a particular area of study is a challenging task no matter what major you have chosen. As with any undertaking to attain an advanced education, there are many things to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the design college and program are both accredited and highly regarded in the profession. You originally came upon this website because you had an interest in How To Become Interior Designer and wanted more info on the topic Online Courses For Interior Design. But it is still imperative that you conduct your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to effectively assess and compare interior design schools so that you can make the right ultimate selection. And with superior training and your drive to succeed, you can reach your goal of becoming an interior designer in Collinsville AL.
Other Alabama Designer Locations
Collinsville is a town in DeKalb and Cherokee counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. It was incorporated in 1887. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,983. The town is a part of the Gadsden, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Collinsville is located in southern DeKalb County at 34°15'55.555" North, 85°51'41.483" West (34.265432, -85.861523). A small portion extends southeast along Alabama State Route 68 into Cherokee County. The town is located in the Little Wills Valley, between Lookout Mountain to the east and the smaller Big Ridge to the west.
As of the 2010 census Collinsville had a population of 1,983. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 44.9% non-Hispanic white, 9.0% black or African American, 1.1% Native American, 0.1% Asian, 2.1% Pacific Islander (all of whom where Guamanian or Chamorro), 36.8% reporting some other race and 3.0% from two or more races. 43.1% of the population was Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Business Results 1 - 10 of 5