How to Enroll in the Right Interior Designer Program near Skipperville Alabama
Now that you have made a decision to enroll in an interior design college near Skipperville AL, it’s time to begin the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a gift for designing commercial or residential interiors, it’s important that you get the appropriate 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 examination also. So it’s essential that you do the proper research so that you can assess and compare each program that you are considering before you make your ultimate selection. But exactly where do you begin? Many potential students will begin their research by searching for interior design courses near their home and then comparing tuition costs. While location and cost are important issues when making a determination, they should not be the sole ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation must be taken into account as well. We will address those topics and other vital questions that you should be asking the interior design schools you are reviewing later in this article. But before we do, let’s cover a little bit more about what interior design is and what degree and training choices are available.
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Interior Decoration vs Interior Design
Often people confuse interior decoration for interior design and conversely. The principal difference between the two is the level of education required. Anyone can work as an interior decorator if they have a general knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. However, conducting business as an interior designer requires a formal education and in many 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 projects they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are 2 general areas that an interior designer in Skipperville AL may specialize in:
- Residential Designing. Interior Designers typically work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any room of a house, including bedrooms, basements and closets. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for example bathrooms or kitchens.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with commercial or public areas, designers normally concentrate predominantly on either functionality or aesthetic appeal but take notice of both. As an example, business reception areas and meeting rooms are spaces where aesthetics may be emphasized over function. Designs for banks and hospitals might focus more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are several areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, for example lighting, color schemes, furniture and acoustics. Designers have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to produce their visions. From choosing wall paper and carpeting to including Feng shui principles, Skipperville AL interior designers implement a wide range of skills that help bring about their final creations.
Interior Design Degree Programs
There are 4 degree alternatives available in interior design to receive the training necessary to launch your new career in Skipperville AL. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career objectives as well as the money and time that you have to invest in your education. But no matter which degree program you decide to enroll in, make certain to choose one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam mandated in a number of states. More will be covered on additional benefits of accreditation later. Following are short explanations of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Interior Design Associate Degrees provide the minimum amount of education needed to enter the field. They take about two years to finish and programs are available at a number of Alabama community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level jobs as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that provide more in depth training than the Associate Degree. They cover the creative and technical facets of the trade needed to become a designer. They are the lowest 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 provide advanced training in design after achieving a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer choices in specialty majors in general areas such as residential bathrooms or business offices. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in the job market.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral programs are largely for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a university or college 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”, a number of states mandate that graduates of accredited schools become licensed. In some instances, two or more years of professional experience may be called for before a candidate can sit for the licensing exam.
Interior Designer Online Schools
For anyone wishing’ to attend classes in the comfort of their Skipperville AL homes, there are online accredited interior design schools. Attending classes online can be a good alternative for those students that are employed or have busy schedules that make attending classes on campus challenging. Classes can instead be attended on a home computer or laptop when convenient for the student. For some students online programs may be the sole alternative if no interior design colleges are within driving distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more conventional options. Added costs for such things as study materials or commuting may be decreased or eliminated as well. Just make sure that the college you pick is accredited by a recognized accrediting organization, 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 acquire your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design school may be the right alternative for you.
What to Ask Interior Designer Schools
Now that you have selected the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can start the task of analyzing your school options. Location will be an important factor, especially if the college needs to be within driving distance from your Skipperville AL residence. Obviously 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 limit your choices as well. But picking the most affordable school or the one that is closest to your residence are not the ideal ways to make your decision. There are other factors that you need to consider as well, including the accreditation and reputation of the program. Below are a few questions that you may want to address with the schools you are considering to get those answers as well as others to help you compare and ultimately pick the right degree program.
Is the Interior Design Degree Program Accredited? It’s necessary to confirm that the interior design school 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). Colleges earning accreditation from the NASAD have undergone a rigorous assessment 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 confirm that the reputation of the college and the quality of the education are outstanding, it may also help when requesting financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not offered for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Skipperville AL employers will only hire graduates of accredited programs for entry level positions.
Does the College Ready you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do require that interior designers get 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 college. And in some of those States requiring licensing, 2 or more years of professional experience may be required also. So aside from furnishing an outstanding education, the Skipperville AL program you select should also provide the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the State where you will be working.
What is the School’s Job Placement Rate? Once you have graduated and received your interior design certification, you will probably want some help in finding your first position. Ask the schools that you are reviewing if they have a job assistance program. If so, ask what their job placement rates are. A high rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are held in high esteem within the interior design field and its students are in demand. It might also indicate that the school has a large network of Skipperville AL business relationships where they can place students to obtain internships or jobs after they graduate.
Is Financial Assistance Offered? Contact the financial assistance offices for the Skipperville AL colleges you are looking at and find out what type of assistance they offer. Many of interior designer schools offer financial assistance to their new students. Various colleges provide partial scholarships and others provide support in acquiring federal student loans or grants. Again it must be stressed that enrolling in an accredited school is important for qualification in most cases. In some cases a school that has a higher tuition may effectively be cheaper than its competitors because they offer more generous financial assistance.
How Big are the Classrooms? Small classes are more personal and conducive to personalized instruction. If classes are larger, you may receive limited individual instruction from the teachers. Find out from the Skipperville AL schools you are considering what their average teacher to student ratios are. If convenient from your Skipperville home, go to the school and sit in on a few classes. While there speak with some students and ask what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their credentials are in interior design.
Are Classes Available that Fit your Schedule? Finally, verify that the interior design program you enroll in provides classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially significant if you plan to continue working while going to school. If you can only go to classes at night or on weekends near Skipperville AL, verify that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an option as well. Finally, check what the procedure is for making up classes missed because of work, sickness or family obligations.
Interior Designer College Skipperville AL
Choosing the right interior design college is an important initial step toward launching your career in this creative and fulfilling occupation. Finding a college where you will obtain your training and cultivate your talents in a particular area of study is a challenging job regardless of what field you have selected. As with any endeavor to attain a higher education, there are a number of points to think about before choosing a program, course or school. At a minimum, check 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 Designer College and wanted more info on the topic Education For Interior Designer. But it is still imperative that you complete your due diligence research. By doing so and following the balance of the recommendations provided in this article, you will be able to properly evaluate and compare interior design colleges so that you can make the appropriate final selection. And with quality training and your determination to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Skipperville AL.
Other Alabama Designer Locations
Dale County, Alabama
The area now known as Dale County was originally inhabited by members of the Creek Indian nation, who occupied all of southeastern Alabama during this period. Between the years of 1764 and 1783 this region fell under the jurisdiction of the colony of British West Florida. The county, together with the surrounding area, was ceded to the United States in the 1814 Treaty of Fort Jackson, ending the Creek Indian Wars. A blockhouse had been constructed during the conflict on the northwestern side of the Choctawhatchee River, and the first non-Indian residents of Dale County would be veterans who began to settle in the area around 1820.
Dale County was established on December 22, 1824. It originally included the whole of what is now Coffee County and Geneva County, together with the "panhandle" portion of Houston County. The original county seat was located at Dale's Court House (now the town of Daleville), but when Coffee County split from Dale in 1841, the seat was moved to Newton. Here it remained until 1870 when, following a courthouse fire in 1869 and the formation of Geneva County (which took the southern third of Dale County), the county seat was moved to the town of Ozark, where it remains. In 1903 a small portion of the southeast part of Dale county was joined to the newly formed Houston County.
Portions of the 15th Regiment of Alabama Infantry, which served with great distinction throughout the U.S. Civil War, were recruited in Dale County, with all of Co. "E" and part of Co. "H" being composed of Dale County residents. This unit is most famous for being the regiment that confronted the 20th Maine on the Little Round Top during the Battle of Gettysburg on July 2, 1863. Despite several ferocious assaults, the 15th was ultimately unable to dislodge the Union troops, and was ultimately forced to retreat after a desperate bayonet charge led by the 20th Maine's commander, Col. Joshua L. Chamberlain. This assault was vividly recreated in Ronald F. Maxwell's 1993 film Gettysburg. The 15th would continue to serve until the final capitulation of Lee's army at Appomattox Court House in 1865.
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