How to Select the Best Interior Design College near Kiana Alaska
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior designer college near Kiana AK, 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 essential that you get the right training to put your skills to work. And since a number of states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need preparation to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s very important that you carry out the proper research in order to analyze and compare each program that you are reviewing before you make your ultimate choice. But exactly where do you start? Some future students will begin their research by looking for interior design colleges near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While location and cost are key variables when making a decision, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation need to be taken into consideration as well. We will address those issues and other vital questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But first, let’s cover 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
Often people mistake interior design for interior decoration and vice versa. The principal difference between them is the amount of training required. Anyone can do business as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, conducting business as an interior designer requires formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are educated to make work or living areas attractive as well as functional. On some projects they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are two general categories that an interior designer in Kiana AK can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of the home, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with public or commercial spaces, designers frequently focus primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks may concentrate more on functionality over appearance as the main concern.
There are various areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, such as lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. They need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Kiana AK interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that contribute to their final designs.
Interior Design Degrees
There are 4 degree options offered in interior design to get the training necessary to launch your new career in Kiana AK. Your choice will undoubtedly be driven by your career goals in addition to the money and time that you have to devote to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, make sure to select one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in a number of states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design furnish the minimum level of training required to enter the field. They take about 2 years to complete and programs are available at numerous Alaska trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can usually qualify for entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are 4 year programs that provide more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the creative and technical facets of the business required to become a designer. They are the lowest credential needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs furnish advanced design training after achieving a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide alternatives in specialty 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 degrees are primarily for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a university or college level. The degree programs vary in length but are normally completed in 3 to 5 years.
In order to work as a professional and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, many states mandate that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In some instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be required before an applicant can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Design Online Schools
For those who wish to attend classes in the convenience of their Kiana AK homes, there are online accredited interior design degrees. Studying online can be a great solution for those students that are working or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when practical for the student. For a number of students online programs may be the sole option if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as study materials or commuting may be reduced or eliminated also. Just be sure that the school you pick is accredited by a respected accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online schools may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance education. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design program may be the perfect option for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Designer Programs
When you have chosen the interior design degree that you want to earn, you can begin the process of reviewing your college options. Location will be an important issue, particularly if the college has to be within driving distance from your Kiana AK residence. Of course if you are interested in attending a school online, or are able to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualification. The fee for tuition will decrease your choices as well. But selecting the most affordable school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other variables that you need to look at as well, such as the reputation and accreditation of the college. Below are a list of concerns that you may want to ask the schools you are considering to obtain those answers as well as others to help you assess and ultimately select the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It’s essential to confirm that the interior design college and program that you select has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a rigorous assessment of their instructors and programs. Just verify 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 school and the quality of the training are outstanding, it might also help when applying for financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Kiana AK employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the Program Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, several States do require 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, 2 or more years of occupational experience may be required also. So besides furnishing an exceptional education, the Kiana AK college you enroll in should also provide the appropriate training to pass the NCIDQ exam 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 received your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly need some help in finding your first job. Ask the colleges that you are reviewing if they have a job placement program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good sign that the school and its programs are held in high regard within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also indicate that the school has a significant network of Kiana AK business relationships where they can refer students to secure internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Get in touch with the financial aid departments for the Kiana AK colleges you are looking at and ask what type of assistance they provide. A number of interior designer schools offer financial assistance to their incoming students. Certain colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide help in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be less expensive than its counterparts because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Small are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Kiana AK schools you are considering what their average student to teacher ratios are. If practical from your Kiana home, visit the college and monitor 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 approaches are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Last, confirm that the interior designer school you choose provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially important if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Kiana AK, verify that those classes are available. If you have a full-time job and can only enroll part-time, verify that is an alternative also. Finally, ask what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, family or illness.
Online Classes For Interior Design Kiana AK
Choosing the right interior designer program is a crucial initial step toward starting your career in this creative and fulfilling profession. Finding a school where you will obtain your training and cultivate your talents in a specific area of study is a challenging job regardless of what major you have decided on. As with any undertaking to receive a higher education, there are a number of points to consider before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, make sure that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an interest in Online Classes For Interior Design and wanted more info on the topic Best Interior Design Schools Online. But it is still important that you carry out your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations provided in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with superior training and your determination to succeed, you can accomplish your goal of becoming an interior designer in Kiana AK.
Other Alaska Designer Locations
Kiana, meaning where three rivers meet, was founded several centuries ago. Before Kiana became a village, the Inupiat Eskimos tended to travel with certain animal herds; constantly hunting for meat and furs.
In the 1800s, the Inupiaqs of Kiana used to live along the Kobuk River. Throughout the year the villagers would hunt and fish near their houses. They moved to where there was an abundance of animals and fish. The Inupiaqs lived in sod houses, and did not live in them twice, because they would move to where the animals were.
When someone died inside the house they abandoned it, believing they would catch a contagious disease. Instead of building coffins or digging graves, the villagers wrapped the bodies of the deceased in cloths and put poles in them to make a teepee shape.