How to Choose an Interior Designer Course near Ash Fork Arizona
Now that you have decided to enroll in an interior designer college near Ash Fork AZ, it’s time to start the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial spaces, it’s important that you obtain the proper training to put your skills to work. And since several states do mandate that interior designers be licensed, depending on your state of residence you could need training to pass a licensing exam as well. So it’s essential that you perform the appropriate research so that you can analyze and compare each school that you are looking at prior to making your final choice. But exactly where do you start? Some future students will kick off their research by searching for interior design programs near their home and then comparing tuition expenses. While cost and location are important issues when making a determination, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as reputation and accreditation need to be taken into account also. We will address those issues and other crucial questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are interested in later in this article. But first, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and class options are available.
Interior Design and Interior Decoration
Often people mistake interior design for interior decoration and vice versa. The main distinction between the two is the level of education required. Any person can work as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. However, working as an interior designer requires formal training and in numerous states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree as well as be licensed. Interior designers are taught to make work or living areas attractive as well as functional. On many occasions they may team up with architects and building engineers. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Ash Fork AZ can specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers frequently 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 bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with public or commercial areas, designers normally focus predominantly on either aesthetic appeal or functionality but take notice of both. As an example, business meeting rooms and reception areas are areas where aesthetics may be focused on over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might concentrate more on functionality over looks as the main concern.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as lighting, color schemes, acoustics and furniture. Designers need to be able to use graphic design and read blue prints in order to produce their visions. From picking wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui principles, Ash Fork AZ interior designers utilize a wide variety of skills that help bring about their final designs.
Interior Designer Degree Programs
There are four degree options available in interior design to obtain the training necessary to launch your new career in Ash Fork AZ. Your choice will undoubtedly be motivated 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, make certain to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is required in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination required in several states. More will be addressed on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design furnish the minimum amount of training needed to enter the field. They take about two years to finish and programs are available at many Arizona community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level positions 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 technical and creative aspects of the business needed to become a designer. They are the minimum degree needed by a college graduate in order to secure an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs supply advanced design training after attaining the Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees provide alternatives in specialty majors for such things as residential bathrooms or business offices. A number of students enroll to enhance their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are mainly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a college or university level. The programs vary in length but are normally completed in three to five years.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, many states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of field experience may be required before a candidate can take the licensing exam.
Interior Design Online Schools
For individuals who wish to attend classes in the convenience of their Ash Fork AZ homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Attending classes online can be an excellent 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 laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For a number of students online schools may be the only alternative if no interior design schools are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be cheaper than for more conventional options. Added expenses for such things as commuting or study materials may be minimized or eliminated as well. Just make certain that the college you enroll in is accredited by a recognized 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 learning. If you have the dedication to acquire your degree without the confines of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design college may be the perfect option for you.
Subjects to Ask Interior Design Colleges
After you have selected the interior design degree that you wish to earn, you can begin the task of reviewing your college options. Location will be a critical issue, especially if the college has to be within commuting distance from your Ash Fork AZ home. Of course if you have decided on attending a school online, or are prepared to move to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The expense for tuition will narrow down your choices also. But choosing the cheapest school or the one that is nearest to your residence are not the best ways to make your selection. There are other issues that you should look at as well, including the reputation and accreditation of the college. Following are a few concerns that you may want to ask the colleges you are looking at to get those answers as well as others in order to help you examine and subsequently choose the right degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s necessary to verify that the interior design program and college that you choose has earned accreditation from 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). Colleges obtaining accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive evaluation of their teachers and programs. Just confirm that both the degree program and the college have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged 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 aid or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited schools. Also, a number of Ash Fork AZ employers will only employ graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the College Prep you for Licensing? As we mentioned earlier, several States do require that interior designers get licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) examination as well as a degree from an accredited college. And in several of those States requiring licensing, at least 2 years of professional experience may be required also. Therefore besides providing an outstanding education, the Ash Fork AZ school you enroll in should also furnish the proper instruction to pass the NCIDQ examination and comply with the minimum requirements for licensing for Arizona or the State where you will be working.
What is the Program’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and earned your interior design certification, you will probably want some assistance in finding your first job. Ask the schools that you are considering if they have a job placement program. If so, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good indication that the school and its programs are highly esteemed within the interior design trade and its students are in demand. It might also signify that the school has a sizable network of Ash Fork AZ business contacts where they can refer students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Ash Fork AZ schools you are looking at and find out what kind of support they offer. Many of interior designer programs provide financial aid to their new students. Some colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide support in securing federal student loans or grants. It must be emphasized again that enrolling in an accredited program is important for qualification in most cases. Sometimes a program that has a higher tuition may ultimately be cheaper than its competitors because they offer more generous financial aid.
How Big are the Classes? Small classes are more personal and conducive to one on one instruction. If classes are large, you probably will receive minimal individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Ash Fork AZ programs you are looking at what their average teacher to student ratios are. If practical from your Ash Fork home, go to the campus and attend a few classes. Take the opportunity to talk with some 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 Available that Fit your Schedule? Finally, make sure that the interior designer college you select provides classes the fit your hectic schedule. This is particularly important if you will continue working while attending school. If you can only attend classes in the evening or on weekends near Ash Fork AZ, make certain that those classes are offered. If working full-time means you can only enroll part-time, verify that is an option as well. Finally, ask what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of illness, work or family emergencies.
Considering Attending Interior Design School in Ash Fork AZ?
Ash Fork, Arizona
Geologic places of interest include the Cathedral Caves which are approximately 10 miles (16 km) west of town off Arizona Road, and Dante's Descent, a 275-foot (84 m) deep sinkhole also known as "Devil's Hole", which is approximately five miles northwest of Ash Fork, off of Crookton Road. Unfortunately, after closure by the state, Dante's Descent cannot legally be visited by the public. Pictorial and historic documentation of the natural attraction may be found at the Ash Fork Library.
Ash Fork lies in close proximity to Kaibab National Forest and Coconino National Forest, and international attractions such as the Grand Canyon are approximately an hour's drive away using major roads. Service roads allow swifter access to back areas of Grand Canyon National Park, but may not be open to public thoroughfare.
Approximately 15 miles (24 km) to the north of Ash Fork is Beale Road, which has the distinction of being the first federally funded highway. The internationally renowned U.S. Route 66 also runs directly through the town. Notably, the longest original, uninterrupted stretch of Route 66 still in existence (approximately 9.6 miles (15.4 km) long) can be found between Ash Fork, Arizona, and Seligman, Arizona, beginning just beyond Ash Fork at Crookton Road. The surrounding geographical area and settlements served as inspiration for the 2006 Pixar film Cars.
Pick the Best Interior Design School near Ash Fork AZ
Selecting the right interior designer school is a crucial initial step toward launching your career in this artistic and gratifying occupation. Locating a college where you will receive your training and develop your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging job regardless of what major you have selected. As with any endeavor to recieve an advanced education, there are several points to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly regarded in the profession. However it is still important that you perform your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to properly review and compare colleges so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with quality training and your desire to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Ash Fork AZ.
More Awesome Cities in Arizona