How to Choose the Best Interior Design College near Craig Alaska
Once you have made a decision to enroll in an interior design college near Craig AK, it’s time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing residential or commercial spaces, it’s imperative that you obtain the right training to put your talents to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing examination also. So it’s vital that you carry out the proper research so that you can analyze and compare each school that you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision. But where do you begin? Some prospective students will begin their research by searching for interior design colleges near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are key variables when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation need to be taken into consideration also. We will discuss those topics and other vital 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 class choices are offered.
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Interior Decoration and Interior Design
Many people confuse interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The key difference between them is the amount of education required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. However, conducting business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or living areas attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may collaborate with building engineers and architects. There are two broad categories that an interior designer in Craig AK may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any area of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When working on public or commercial spaces, designers normally concentrate primarily on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but pay attention to both. As an example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are areas where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might concentrate more on functionality over looks as the primary concern.
There are many areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer needs to learn, including lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui concepts, Craig AK interior designers implement a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Designer Degree Options
There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to receive the training needed to begin your new career in Craig AK. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career objectives as well as the money and time that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you opt to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination mandated in a number of states. More will be discussed on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design supply the minimum level of training needed to enter the profession. They take about 2 years to complete and programs are offered at a number of Alaska trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that furnish more comprehensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical aspects of the business required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a graduating student in order to secure an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs provide advanced design training after achieving the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide choices in specialty majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate degrees are primarily for those professionals who want to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs vary in length but are typically completed in 3 to 5 years.
To work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states mandate that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be called for before a candidate can take the licensing exam.
Online Interior Designer Colleges
For individuals who wish to attend classes in the comfort of their Craig AK homes, there are accredited online interior design colleges. Studying online can be a good alternative for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For many students online schools may be the sole alternative if no interior design schools are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the college you choose is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online programs may also receive accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the discipline to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the perfect alternative for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Designer Colleges
Once you have chosen the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can start the task of assessing your school options. Location will be a critical issue, especially if the campus has to be within commuting distance from your Craig AK home. Obviously if you have decided on attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The expense for tuition will narrow down your choices as well. But selecting 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 variables that you should look at also, including the reputation and accreditation of the school. Following are a list of questions that you may want to ask the colleges you are looking at to get those answers as well as others to help you assess and subsequently pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It’s necessary to make sure that the interior design program and college that you choose has earned accreditation from either a national or regional agency. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their instructors and programs. Just verify 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 education are outstanding, it may also help when applying for financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not available for non-accredited schools. Also, many Craig AK employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level jobs.
Does the College Ready you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, a number of States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination in addition to a degree from an accredited program. And in some of those States mandating licensing, at least 2 years of work experience may be required as well. Therefore in addition to furnishing an exceptional education, the Craig AK program you choose should also furnish the proper training to pass the NCIDQ examination and satisfy the minimum requirements for licensing for Alaska or the State where you will be employed.
What is the College’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and attained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first position. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job placement program. If so, find out 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 profession and its graduates are sought after. It could also signify that the college has a sizable network of Craig AK business contacts where they can refer students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Offered? Get in touch with the financial aid offices for the Craig AK colleges you are evaluating and ask what type of assistance they offer. A number of interior design colleges offer financial assistance to their new students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships while others provide assistance in obtaining federal student loans or grants. It must be stressed again that choosing an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a program that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the Craig AK colleges you are considering what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Craig home, go to the school and sit in on a few classes. While there talk with a few students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching approaches are and what their experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, make certain that the interior designer college you select offers classes the fit your busy schedule. This is especially important if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Craig AK, confirm that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative as well. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Interior Design University Craig AK
Choosing the right interior design school is an important initial step toward launching your career in this creative and rewarding occupation. Locating a college where you will obtain 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 acquire a higher education, there are a number of factors to think about before selecting a course, program or school. At a minimum, confirm that the program and design college are both accredited and highly esteemed in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an interest in Interior Design University and wanted more info on the topic Interior Design Institute Online. However it is still imperative that you perform your due diligence research. By doing so and following the remaining recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively evaluate and compare interior design schools so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with excellent training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Craig AK.
Other Alaska Designer Locations
Craig (Tlingit: Sháan Séet) is a first-class city in the Prince of Wales-Hyder Census Area in the Unorganized BoroughA[›] in the U.S. state of Alaska. The population was 1,201 at the 2010 census, down from 1,397 in 2000.
Craig is the largest town on Prince of Wales Island, the fourth largest island in the USA. Craig is approximately 56 miles (90 km) by air northwest of Ketchikan and 220 miles (350 km) south of Juneau.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 9.4 square miles (24.3 km2), of which, 6.7 square miles (17.4 km2) of it is land and 2.7 square miles (7.0 km2) of it (28.94%) is water.