Interior Design Degrees

The Advantages To Earning An Interior Design Degree

Interior design programs provide students with skills and knowledge related to using a variety of creative elements to beautify and maximize the function of spaces within homes, businesses, and other structures. Interior designers plan and compose nearly every type of interior space within private homes, offices, airport terminals, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, educational institutions, medical facilities, theaters, and some governmental agencies. Professionals within the field of interior design must create quality spaces for clients to increase a business’ productivity, attract sales and clients, provide relaxation and comfort to people within the spaces, and increase the market value of a structure.

Individuals pursuing interior design degrees learn how to maximize elements of color, texture, lighting, furniture, and decor to plan and prepare spaces that are aesthetically pleasing, practical, and focused. Attaining a degree in interior design is the best path to ensuring career success as students gain knowledge pertaining to art history, drafting, computer aided design, lighting, space planning, illustration, technology, business, and furniture. Interior design programs also give students a broad and versatile educational basis necessary for employment within a far range of potential occupations using skills ti plan and draft designs, understand building codes, work closely with clients, and create a variety of settings within structures.

Students who manage job and family responsibilities while pursuing a degree often find online degree programs one of the best paths to completing educational training necessary for career and personal success. Most colleges and universities have responded to the increasing demand for online instruction by developing innovative online degree programs. Online courses provide students with virtually the same educational experience as their traditional, on campus counterparts with the added benefits of a more personalized degree. Online classes are generally made up of groups of 25 students with 24 hour access to course information, materials, and instruction. Online courses also give students the opportunity to interact with instructors and other students on a more personal level through one on one Internet chats. Online degree programs provide busy students an added flexibility in course scheduling to enable students to meet obligations beyond their education.

What Students Learn Within An Interior Design Degree Program

An interior design degree enables students to gain the skills required to qualify as professionals within design occupations. Interior design programs provide instruction regarding art, function, safety, and aesthetics of spaces within a multitude of private and public structures. Traditionally, interior designers focused upon decorating spaces. Most recent trends have steadily grown for interior designers to work closely with engineers, electricians, contractors, and other professionals to incorporate aspects like architectural elements, building layouts, and safety concerns regarding building. Most interior design courses teach students elements of style, texture, furniture, lighting, safety, comfort, and color to ensure spaces meet the needs of the people who live, work, or use them. To qualify for employment within the field of interior design, candidates are required to possess a bachelor degree combined with work experiences, though some candidates begin their education with an associate’s degree.

Courses within an associate’s level interior design program include classes like: architectural drafting, history of interiors and architecture, residential design, commercial design, construction principles, design theory, color theory, perspective, fundamentals of design, drawing, marker rendering, space planning, visual indication, theory and development of form, basics of interior design, business principles, textiles, lighting specification, programming and institutional design, building codes, environmental design, computer aided drafting, 2D and 3D design, and hue and tint systems. Graduates who complete an associate degree program may advance to employment or go on to bachelor degree programs.

Bachelor level courses generally consist of: architectural drafting, architectural detailing and construction, drawings, color theory, fundamentals of design, history of interiors and architecture, perspective, visual indication, theory and development of form, residential design, commercial design, basic drafting, basics of interior design, digital visualization for interior design, construction principles, design theory, color, perspective, history of furniture: ancient style to 1830, programming and space planning, lighting, marker rendering, space planning, business principles, textiles, lighting specifications, institutional design, human factors, office design, drafting technology, codes/barrier free design, residential design studio, introduction to AutoCAD, building codes, environmental design, computer aided drafting, computer 3D architectural model making, interior architectural systems and design, advanced residential design studio, professional practices, environmental design, mixed medium rendering, digital presentation methods, commercial design studio, historical preservation, multicultural/global design, construction documents, materials and specifications, photography, sales and persuasive techniques, residential design: kitchen and baths, architectural design conceptualization, sustainable practices for residential design, sustainable building principles and practices, furniture design, advanced commercial design, and an internship program with more experienced interior designers. Graduates who complete bachelor level studies within the field of interior design generally qualify for entry employment as interior designers and other various design positions.

Some graduates advance to master’s level programs and participate in classes like: qualifying design, color and materials, qualifying architectural drawing, qualifying construction, autoCAD, design, research methods, construction, presentation techniques, history of interior design, directed research in interior design, lighting design, 3D CAD, concepts of design, decorative arts, ethics, and advanced interior design and architectural theory. Graduates who complete a master’s degree program often qualify for chief design or managerial positions or advance to doctoral degree programs.

Courses within a doctoral degree program include: art and design; design methods; research methods; interior design systems and practices; design communications; organizational systems and design; facility management and design; facility management and design; design planning and analysis; interior design systems; universal design and accessibility; environment and aging; philosophical foundations of design, housing and apparel; housing, neighborhood design, and sustainability; organization theory; experiential learning; fundamentals of knowledge; and fundamental principles of philosophy. Graduates from doctoral degree programs qualify as experts within the field of interior design and work as researchers and instructors within colleges, universities, and design schools.

Prospective Jobs For Interior Design Graduates/

Interior design graduates who complete their studies gain a well rounded educational background necessary for personal and career success. Most graduates from an interior design program qualify for employment within many fields. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics expects employment of interior designers to increase by 19 percent through 2018 at a faster than average rate in comparison to other occupations. Demand for professionals within the field of interior design is predicted to increase as businesses seek spaces which satisfy workers and customers within offices and stores, as residential homeowners renovate, remodel, and add on to houses, as hotels update or renovate existing structures, and as healthcare facilities expand to accommodate an aging population.

Despite the increasing demand for interior designers, competition for jobs is expected to be particularly high due to the number of qualified applicants in relation to the number of available jobs. Many graduates specialize their services in one particular design element, like home remodeling or energy efficient “green” design, to increase employability and ensure career stability. Graduates who complete associate degree programs often work as interior design assistants, junior designers, or as sales representatives within furniture and home stores.

Graduates who obtain bachelor degrees often work as furniture, textile, residential, civic, and lighting designers. Some bachelor level graduates work as project managers, in-house interior designers within firms, historic preservationists, or as design specialists within bath kitchen, lighting, green, and ergonomic design companies.

Graduates who complete advanced studies within master’s degree programs often work as chief designers, illustrators, computer renderers, or facility management members within architecture and design firms, businesses, and corporations. Some graduates who complete master degree programs in interior design work as project managers, and product developers within organizations. Many individuals begin self operated freelance firms upon completing degree programs, gaining adequate funding, and acquiring work experiences. Some interior design graduates work within related fields, like marketing, sales, or journalism if unable to gain employment within interior design occupations.

Career Outlook and Advancement Opportunities For Graduates With Interior Design Degrees

The field of interior design is expected to provide qualified graduates with long term, mostly stable career and employment opportunities. Graduates with interior design degrees who complete formal training programs, specialize studies, gain work experience, and display talent, style, and creativity in their work may find increased job prospects in comparison to graduates with less formal training, knowledge, and skills. Overall employment for interior design degree graduates can be greatly affected by economic fluctuations and current consumer trends. During economic downturns, graduates may find decreases in employment options in consumer and business sectors.

As the economy expands, interior design graduates may find an increased demand for their services. Despite economic factors, graduates who specialize training in sustainable, green technologies, or one particular design element like kitchen and bath design, lighting, remodeling/renovations, outdoor living spaces, ergonomic design, hospitality design, or medical fields will find increased career stability and employment options. As with most design careers, graduates generally begin as entry level assistants working closely with experienced interior designers and other professionals until gaining one to three years of experience and establishing their reputation. Upon gaining experience, most interior designers advance to positions with greater responsibility, less supervision, and higher pay.

Many graduates who complete masters or doctoral programs begin employment as chief designers within firms to gain experience and may advance to their own businesses. Graduates with advanced degrees also work as instructors within colleges, universities, and design schools. As with most occupations, graduates who complete formal degree programs, distinguish their style and talent, gain work experiences, and specialize their services often build long term, lasting careers within the field of interior design.

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