Bachelor's programs in interior design are available at many private and public colleges and universities, design schools and technical institutes. Students in this program learn design principles necessary for creating indoor spaces through color, lighting and texture, and may have the opportunity to gain hands-on design experience through internships. Programs typically prepare students for entry-level interior design positions and to sit for certification exams. Online availability is limited due to the hands-on nature of interior design curricula.
Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Interior Design
A high school diploma or its equivalent is needed for admission into a bachelor's program in interior design. In addition, a portfolio review may be required or preferred for admission to some programs. The curricula of interior design bachelor's degree programs are based on design, architecture and art principles. In addition to receiving classroom instruction, students also often participate in internships so they can acquire professional experience under the supervision of an interior design professional. Common classes may include:
- Interior design materials
- Design philosophy
- Interior architectural drafting
- Interior lighting
- Furniture design
- Color theory
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), interior designer positions should increase by 4% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). Interior designers who specialize in particular areas, such as bathrooms or kitchens, may find better prospects. Salaries differ according to an interior designer's specialty, employer, experience and status. As of May 2015, the BLS reported that interior designers earned an annual mean income of $55,510.
Certification and Continuing Education Information
Some state require interior designers to acquire a license or register, which typically involves passing an exam by the national Council for Interior Design. Qualified candidates must meet certain education and experience requirements. Voluntary certifications are also offered by the National Kitchen and Bath Association.
Advanced degrees are available for students wishing to purse their interior design studies further. Students focus on research, theory and issues within interior design and often choose a concentration to focus on a certain aspect within the field.
When students earn a bachelor of fine arts in interior design, they will learn more about color theory, furniture design, and interior lighting. Students should make sure they pay attention to licensing and registering requirements in their state, as this might be required after graduation.