How to Pick the Right Interior Designer Degree Program near South Orange New Jersey
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near South Orange NJ, it’s time to begin the process of selecting a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing commercial or residential spaces, it’s important that you obtain the proper training to put your talents to work. And since a number of states do require that interior designers become licensed, based upon your state of residence you could need preparation to pass a licensing examination also. So it’s crucial that you carry out the appropriate research in order to analyze and compare each college that you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection. But just where do you start? Some prospective students will launch their research by searching for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are important factors when making a decision, they are by no means the sole ones. Qualifications such as reputation and accreditation need to be considered also. We will discuss those issues and other vital questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are interested in 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 alternatives are offered.
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Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Some people mistake interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The primary distinction between them is the level of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they possess a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. On the other hand, doing business as an interior designer necessitates formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Associate or Bachelor’s Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make living or work areas attractive as well as functional. On various projects they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are two general categories that an interior designer in South Orange NJ can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on new construction and existing homes. They can design basically any area of the home, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one particular room, for instance kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public areas, designers normally concentrate primarily on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but pay attention to both. For instance, business reception areas and meeting rooms are areas where aesthetics may be stressed over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main concern.
There are various areas of residential and commercial interior design that a designer must learn, such as color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. They have to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to create their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to incorporating Feng shui principles, South Orange NJ interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that help bring about their ultimate creations.
Interior Design Degree Options
There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to obtain the training required to start your new profession in South Orange NJ. Your selection will no doubt be influenced by your career goals as well as the money and time that you have budgeted to devote to your education. But no matter which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is needed in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in a number of states. More will be discussed on additional accreditation benefits later. Following are brief explanations of the interior design degrees that are offered.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees supply the minimum amount of education required to enter the profession. They take approximately two years to finish and programs are offered at numerous New Jersey community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can commonly qualify for entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that furnish more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical aspects of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the minimum credential needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level position as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs furnish advanced design training after attaining a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide options in specialty majors in general areas such as business offices or residential bathrooms. A number of students enroll to advance their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctorate programs are mostly for those professionals who wish to teach interior design at a college or university level. The degree programs differ in length but are typically completed in three to five years.
In order to work as a professional and use the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In several instances, two or more years of professional experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Colleges
For those who wish to attend classes in the comfort of their South Orange NJ homes, there are online accredited interior design schools. Attending classes online can be a good alternative for those students that are working or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be accessed on a home computer or laptop when practical for the student. For many students online schools may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Additional expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be reduced or eliminated as well. Just be sure that the school you choose is accredited by a respected 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 distance or online education. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the ideal option for you.
Topics to Ask Interior Designer Programs
After you have decided on the interior designer degree that you would like to earn, you can begin the task of assessing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, particularly if the college needs to be within commuting distance from your South Orange NJ home. 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 fee for tuition will limit your choices also. But choosing the most affordable school or the one that is nearest to home are not the ideal ways to make your selection. There are other factors that you need to look at also, including the reputation and accreditation of the college. Following are a few questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are looking at to get those answers in addition to others to help you compare and ultimately pick the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It’s imperative to confirm that the interior designer college and program that you select has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. One of the most highly regarded in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Schools receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through a rigorous assessment of their programs and teachers. Just make sure that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Not only will it help confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are outstanding, it might also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of South Orange NJ employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level jobs.
Does the School Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do require that interior designers become licensed. This would require a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited school. And in several of those States mandating licensing, two or more years of work experience may be required also. Therefore besides furnishing an exceptional education, the South Orange NJ program you enroll in should also provide the suitable instruction to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum requirements for licensing for New Jersey or the State where you will be working.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? After you have graduated and attained your interior design certification, you will no doubt need some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the programs that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A high rate is an excellent indication that the college and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It could also indicate that the college has a large network of South Orange NJ business relationships where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after graduation.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial assistance departments for the South Orange NJ colleges you are looking at and find out what type of aid they offer. A number of interior design programs provide financial assistance to their incoming students. Some colleges offer partial scholarships and others provide help in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited college is important for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a program that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Small are the Classes? Smaller classes are more intimate and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are large, you may receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Ask the South Orange NJ schools you are looking at what their average student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your South Orange home, go to the campus and monitor a couple of classes. While there talk with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching philosophies are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Fit your Schedule? Last, verify that the interior designer school you enroll in provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while attending college. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near South Orange NJ, verify that those classes are offered. If you have a full-time job and can only attend part-time, check that is an option as well. Finally, find out what the protocol is for making up classes missed due to work, sickness or family obligations.
Good Colleges For Interior Design South Orange NJ
Choosing the right interior designer program is a critical initial step toward starting your career in this creative and gratifying occupation. Locating a school where you will obtain your education and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a daunting job regardless of what major you have chosen. As with any endeavor to receive an advanced education, there are a number of points to think about before selecting a course, program or school. At a minimum, check that the design college and program are both accredited and highly respected in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an interest in Good Colleges For Interior Design and wanted more info on the topic Online Masters Degree In Interior Design. However it is still imperative that you perform your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with superior training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in South Orange NJ.
Other New Jersey Designer Locations
South Orange, New Jersey
South Orange, officially the Township of South Orange Village, is a suburban township in Essex County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the village's population was 16,198, reflecting a decline of 766 (-4.5%) from the 16,964 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 574 (+3.5%) from the 16,390 counted in the 1990 Census.Seton Hall University is located in the township.
"The time and circumstances under which the name South Orange originated will probably never be known," wrote historian William H. Shaw in 1884, "and we are obliged to fall back on a tradition, that Mr. Nathan Squier first used the name in an advertisement offering wood for sale" in 1795. Other sources attribute the derivation for all of The Oranges to King William III, Prince of Orange.
South Orange Village dates back to May 4, 1869, when it was formed within South Orange Township (now Maplewood). On March 4, 1904, the Village of South Orange was created by an act of the New Jersey Legislature and separated from South Orange Township. In 1978, the village's name was changed by referendum to "The Township of South Orange Village", becoming the first of more than a dozen Essex County municipalities to reclassify themselves as townships in order take advantage of federal revenue sharing policies that allocated townships a greater share of government aid to municipalities on a per capita basis.
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