How to Pick the Right Interior Design Program near Point Lay Alaska
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design school near Point Lay AK, it’s time to begin the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential interiors, it’s imperative that you obtain the right training to put your natural abilities to work. And since some states do mandate that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you may need training to pass a licensing examination as well. So it’s vital that you perform the appropriate research so that you can analyze and compare each college that you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate decision. But exactly where do you begin? A number of potential students will launch their research by looking for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are key factors when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation should be considered as well. We will cover those topics and other important 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 available.
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Interior Design compared to Interior Decoration
Many people confuse interior design for interior decoration and conversely. The key difference between the two is the level of training required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior spaces. However, conducting business as an interior designer necessitates a formal education and in many states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make living or work areas attractive as well as functional. On some projects they may collaborate with architects and building engineers. There are two broad categories that an interior designer in Point Lay AK can specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design essentially any area of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Design. When working on public or commercial areas, designers normally focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For instance, business meeting rooms and reception areas are spaces where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals may concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are numerous areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, for example lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. They must be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From picking carpeting and wall paper to incorporating Feng shui principles, Point Lay AK interior designers implement a wide range of skills that contribute to their ultimate creations.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are 4 degree alternatives offered in interior design to receive the training needed to launch your new profession in Point Lay AK. Your choice will undoubtedly be influenced by your career goals as well as the time and money that you have to commit to your education. But no matter which degree program you opt to enroll in, make sure to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in a number of states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum level of education required to enter the field. They take approximately two years to finish and programs are offered at a number of Alaska trade schools and junior colleges. Graduates can normally obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that provide more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They cover the technical and creative components of the trade required to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These 2 year programs furnish advanced design training after attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer choices in specialized majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are largely for those professionals who wish 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.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited degree programs become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of professional experience may be needed before a candidate can sit for the licensing examination.
Online Interior Design Schools
For students who to study in the comfort of their Point Lay AK homes, there are accredited online interior design degrees. Studying online can be a good solution for those students that are working or have hectic schedules that make going to classes on campus difficult. Classes can instead be attended on a home computer or laptop when practical for the student. For many students online programs may be the only alternative if no interior design programs are within driving distance. And as an added benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Added expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated also. Just make sure that the program you enroll in is accredited by a highly regarded accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also obtain accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the dedication to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom environment, then an online interior design school may be the perfect option for you.
What to Ask Interior Design Programs
After you have decided on the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of analyzing your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the college must be within commuting distance from your Point Lay AK residence. Naturally if you are interested in attending a school online, or are willing to relocate to attend classes, then location may not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices also. But choosing the least expensive college or the one that is closest to home are not the optimal ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you need to consider also, such as the reputation and accreditation of the program. Below are a few questions that you may want to ask the colleges you are reviewing to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you assess and subsequently pick the ideal degree program.
Is the Interior Designer College Accredited? It’s necessary to make sure that the interior designer college and program that you choose has been accredited by either a regional or national organization. One of the most highly regarded in the industry is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a rigorous evaluation of their programs and instructors. Just make sure that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are excellent, it may also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, a number of Point Lay AK employers will only hire graduates of accredited schools for entry level jobs.
Does the College Prepare you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do mandate that interior designers become 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 school. And in some of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required as well. So aside from providing an outstanding education, the Point Lay AK program you enroll in should also provide the proper education to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Alaska or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and received your interior designer certification, you will undoubtedly want some help in finding your first position. Ask the schools that you are reviewing if they have a job assistance program. If yes, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design trade and its graduates are in demand. It may also signify that the school has a substantial network of Point Lay AK business relationships where they can place students to secure internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Available? Contact the financial aid offices for the Point Lay AK schools you are evaluating and ask what type of support they provide. A number of interior designer schools provide financial aid to their new students. Some colleges offer partial scholarships while others provide support in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited college is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a school that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial assistance.
How Small are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you may receive minimal individual attention from the teachers. Find out from the Point Lay AK colleges you are reviewing what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Point Lay home, go to the school and sit in on 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 experiences have been in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior design college you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while attending school. If you can only go to classes in the evening or on weekends near Point Lay AK, confirm that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, confirm 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.
Interior Design Online Certificate Point Lay AK
Picking the right interior designer school is an important first step toward launching your career in this creative and gratifying profession. Searching for a school where you will obtain your training and develop your skills in a specific area of study is a difficult job no matter what field you have selected. As with any endeavor to receive an advanced education, there are a number of points to consider before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, verify 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 Interior Design Online Certificate and wanted more info on the topic How To Study Interior Design At Home. But it is still important that you complete your due diligence analysis. By doing so and following the remaining suggestions provided in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the right final selection. And with quality training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Point Lay AK.
Other Alaska Designer Locations
Point Lay, Alaska
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 34.5 square miles (89 km2), of which, 30.5 square miles (79 km2) of it is land and 4.0 square miles (10 km2) of it (11.66%) is water.
Point Lay once was on a barrier island of Kasegaluk Lagoon, but moved to the mainland near the mouth of the Kokolik River during the 1970s.  A weather station was operated from October 1949 to March 1958.
Point Lay first appeared on the 1880 U.S. Census as an unincorporated Inuit village. All 30 of its residents were Inuit. It returned again in 1890 with 77 residents, all native. It did not appear again until 1940 and again in 1950. The original settlement on the barrier island was relocated a mile to the east on the mainland in the 1970s. The new village of Point Lay returned on the 1980 U.S. Census and was made a census-designated place (CDP). It has continued to return on each successive census.