What You Should Know About This Degree
Interior design in the 21st century is far removed from the profession as it was practiced 20 or 30 years ago. Interior designers today need to be as software-savvy as they are design-savvy, since many of the tools of the trade are the computer programs that help designers and their clients envision and plan the final product.
Another change in the profession is the fact that designers are increasingly operating as part of a team that may include architects, landscape designers, contractors of all kinds, and more. An interior designer needs to be able to communicate clearly and operate as a member of a tightly-organized group of professionals.
There is no national-level licensing required for interior designers. Several areas, including Nevada, Florida, Louisiana, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, require state registration to practice interior design legally. Other states offer certification or registration that can lend legitimacy to a practice and allow designers to differentiate themselves from their competition.
Here are some questions to ask when researching master’s in Interior Design programs:
- Am I eligible for this program? Many master’s programs in Interior Design are intended for those who are already working in the field and wish to expand and deepen their skill set. Some programs are willing to accept students with a bachelor’s degree in art, design, or a related field. Generally, you will need to have had a GPA of 3.0 or higher at the bachelor’s level. The application process may include a portfolio review of your best work.
- How long does it take to complete this online degree? The length of time it takes you to complete your master’s in Interior Design depends largely on whether you attend classes full-time or part-time. Full-time study may allow you to complete the program in as little as one year; part-time attendance may take three to five years.
If you are interested in an online program at a school that is far from your home, note that some online programs include a requirement to meet on campus once or twice a year. Ask an admissions counselor if you’re uncertain of the requirements of any program you’re interested in — they are usually available via phone, email, or live chat.
Most colleges and universities offer both need and merit-based scholarship assistance to students. You may also find financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, or loans through your place of employment or professional organizations to which you belong.