How to Choose the Right Interior Design Degree Program near Glennallen Alaska
Once you have decided to enroll in an interior design degree program near Glennallen AK, it’s time to begin the process of picking a school. Even if you have always had a talent for designing residential or commercial interiors, it’s imperative that you receive the proper training to put your skills to work. And since a number of states do require 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 so that you can analyze and compare each program that you are considering prior to making your ultimate selection. But just where do you begin? Many prospective students will start their research by looking for interior design colleges near their residence and then comparing tuition costs. While cost and location are relevant variables when making a decision, they should not be the only ones. Qualifiers such as accreditation and reputation must be taken into account also. We will cover those issues and other important questions that you must ask the interior design schools you are researching later in this article. But first, let’s cover 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
Many people mistake interior decoration for interior design and vice versa. The primary difference between the two is the amount of training required. Any person can do business as an interior decorator if they have a basic knowledge of or a skill for decorating interior areas. However, doing business as an interior designer requires formal training and in many states one must have an accredited Bachelor’s or Associate Degree and be licensed. Interior designers are trained to make work or residential areas functional as well as attractive. On many occasions they may work together with building engineers and architects. There are 2 broad categories that an interior designer in Glennallen AK may specialize in:
- Residential Design. Interior Designers frequently work on existing homes as well as new construction. They can design basically any area of a house, including bedrooms, closets and basements. Or they may specialize in designing one specific room, for example kitchens or bathrooms.
- Commercial Designing. When dealing with public or commercial areas, designers frequently 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 focused on over function. Designs for hospitals and banks might focus more on functionality over looks as the main consideration.
There are various areas of commercial and residential interior design that a designer needs to learn, such as color schemes, lighting, acoustics and furniture. Designers have to be able to read blue prints and use graphic design in order to create their visions. From selecting wall paper and carpeting to integrating Feng shui principles, Glennallen AK interior designers employ a wide variety of skills that contribute to their ultimate designs.
Interior Designer Training Programs
There are 4 degree options available in interior design to acquire the training needed to launch your new career in Glennallen AK. Your choice will no doubt be driven by your career goals in addition to the time and money that you have budgeted to commit to your education. But regardless of which degree program you choose to enroll in, be sure to pick one that is accredited. Accreditation is mandated in order to qualify for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam required in some states. More will be covered on additional accreditation benefits later. Below are short descriptions of the interior design degrees that are available.
- Associate Degree. Associate degrees in interior design provide the minimum amount of education needed to enter the field. They take roughly two years to finish and programs are offered at a number of Alaska community colleges and vocational schools. Graduates can commonly obtain entry level employment as design assistants.
- Bachelor’s Degree. Bachelor’s degrees are four year programs that provide more extensive training than the Associate Degree. They deal with the technical and creative facets of the business needed to become a designer. They are the lowest degree needed by a college graduate in order to obtain an entry level job as an interior designer.
- Master’s Degree. These two year programs supply advanced training in design after attaining a Bachelor’s Degree. Master’s Degrees offer options in specialty majors for such things as business offices or residential bathrooms. Many students enroll to improve their skills to be more competitive in their careers.
- Doctorate Degree. Doctoral degrees are mostly for those professionals who desire to teach interior design at a university or college level. The programs differ in length but are typically completed in 3 to 5 years.
In order to work professionally and adopt the title of “Interior Designer”, a number of states require that graduates of accredited colleges become licensed. In several instances, 2 or more years of field experience may be needed before an applicant can take the licensing examination.
Online Interior Designer Degree Programs
For those who wish to study in the comfort of their Glennallen AK homes, there are online accredited interior design classes. Attending classes online can be a good solution for those students that are working or have busy schedules that make going to classes on campus problematic. Classes can instead be accessed on a laptop or a personal computer when practical for the student. For many students online programs may be the sole alternative if no interior design schools are within commuting distance. And as an additional benefit, the tuition may be lower than for more traditional options. Additional expenses for such things as study materials or commuting may be minimized or eliminated as well. Just be sure that the school you enroll in is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (more on accreditation later). Online colleges may also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which focuses on online or distance learning. If you have the dedication to earn your degree without the structure of a physical classroom setting, then an online interior design program may be the right option for you.
Questions to Ask Interior Design Colleges
When you have selected the interior designer degree that you want to earn, you can begin the task of assessing your college options. Location will be a critical factor, especially if the school needs to be within commuting distance from your Glennallen AK residence. Obviously if you are interested in attending an online school, or are able to relocate to attend classes, then location might not be a qualifier. The cost of tuition will narrow down your choices as well. But choosing the least expensive school or the one that is closest to home are not the best ways to make your decision. There are other issues that you need to consider also, such as the accreditation and reputation of the school. Below are a list of questions that you may want to address with the colleges you are looking at to obtain those answers in addition to others to help you assess and subsequently choose the appropriate degree program.
Is the Interior Designer Degree Program Accredited? It’s necessary to verify that the interior designer program and college that you choose has been accredited by either a regional or national agency. One of the most respected in the field is the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Colleges receiving accreditation from the NASAD have gone through an extensive assessment of their programs and teachers. Just confirm that both the college and the degree program have been accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Not only will it help verify that the reputation of the school and the quality of the education are outstanding, it may also help when obtaining financial assistance or a student loan. Often they are not accessible for non-accredited colleges. Also, many Glennallen AK employers will only hire graduates of accredited colleges for entry level positions.
Does the College Prep you for Licensing? As we previously mentioned, some States do mandate that interior designers become licensed. This would necessitate a passing score on the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam in addition to a degree from an accredited college. And in some of those States calling for licensing, a minimum of 2 years of occupational experience may be required also. Therefore besides furnishing an excellent education, the Glennallen AK program you enroll in should also furnish the suitable education to pass the NCIDQ exam and meet 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 attained your interior designer certification, you will probably need some help in finding your first position. Ask the colleges that you are looking at if they have a job assistance program. If yes, find out what their job placement rates are. A higher rate is a good indication that the college and its programs are highly regarded within the interior design field and its graduates are in demand. It may also signify that the college has a significant network of Glennallen AK business connections where they can refer students to obtain internships or employment after they graduate.
Is Financial Aid Available? Get in touch with the financial assistance offices for the Glennallen AK schools you are evaluating and ask what kind of support they offer. Many of interior designer colleges provide financial aid to their incoming students. Some schools provide partial scholarships while others provide help in obtaining grants or federal student loans. It must be stressed again that selecting an accredited school is imperative for qualification in most cases. Often a college that has a higher tuition may actually be cheaper than its competitors because they provide more generous financial aid.
How Large are the Classrooms? 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. Ask the Glennallen AK colleges you are considering what their typical student to teacher ratios are. If convenient from your Glennallen home, visit the campus and monitor a few classes. Take the opportunity to speak with some students and find out what their experiences have been. Ask the instructors what their teaching styles are and what their backgrounds are in interior design.
Are Classes Offered that Accommodate your Schedule? Finally, confirm that the interior designer school you choose provides classes the fit your active schedule. This is especially significant if you will continue working while going to college. If you can only attend classes at night or on weekends near Glennallen AK, make sure that those classes are available. If working full-time means you can only attend part-time, verify that is an option also. Finally, find out what the procedure is for making up classes missed due to illness, work or family emergencies.
Become Interior Designer Glennallen AK
Selecting the ideal interior design program is a crucial initial step toward starting your career in this artistic and gratifying profession. Searching for a college where you will receive your education and cultivate your talents in a specific area of study is a difficult task no matter what field you have selected. As with any endeavor to acquire an advanced education, there are several things to consider before enrolling in a program, course or school. At a minimum, verify that the program and design college are both accredited and highly respected in the business. You originally came upon this website because you had an interest in Become Interior Designer and wanted more info on the topic Interior Design Major Requirements. However it is still imperative that you complete your due diligence research. By doing so and following the rest of the recommendations presented in this article, you will be able to effectively review and compare interior design programs so that you can make the ideal ultimate selection. And with superior training and your drive to succeed, you can achieve your goal of becoming an interior designer in Glennallen AK.
Other Alaska Designer Locations
Glennallen /ɡlɛˈnælən/ (Ciisik’e Na’ in Ahtna) is a census-designated place (CDP) in the Valdez–Cordova Census Area in the Unorganized Borough of the U.S. state of Alaska. As of the 2010 census, the population of the CDP was 483, down from 554 in 2000.
Glennallen is located at 62°06′33″N 145°32′47″W / 62.10917°N 145.54639°W / 62.10917; -145.54639 (62.109170, -145.54639; Sec. 23, T004N, R002W, Copper River Meridian), in the Chitina Recording District and Game Management Unit 13.
It lies along the Glenn Highway at its junction with the Richardson Highway, 189 road miles (304 km) east of Anchorage. It is just outside the western boundary of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve.