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Interior Design Degrees in Fort Lauderdale with Course Overviews

Research interior design programs in the Fort Lauderdale, Florida, area, which currently has six colleges offering degrees within 50 miles. Read an overview of courses, admission information and program requirements for these schools and decide which one is right for you.

Fort Lauderdale Interior Design Schools

Students in the Fort Lauderdale area have interior design training options at schools that are less than 45 minutes away from downtown. This article highlights the undergraduate or graduate degree programs at three institutions. Also included is a table with even more information about each school, including facts on student body size, tuition and graduation rates.

  • Miami Dade College is a large community college in Miami that's located about 24 miles south of central Fort Lauderdale. It offers two associate degree programs in interior design.
  • Palm Beach State College is situated around 34 miles north of downtown Fort Lauderdale in Lake Worth. Students can earn an associate degree in the field.
  • Those looking for graduate degrees in interior design will find master's degree programs in interior architecture at Florida International University, which is located 30 miles from Fort Lauderdale's downtown area.

Comparison of Schools

After learning about the profiled schools' academic offerings, take a look at this table to find out about costs, acceptance rates, campus environments and more.

Miami Dade College Palm Beach State College Florida International University
School Type 4-year college; public 4-year college; public 4-year; public
Total Enrollment (2017) 56,001* 30,052* 56,718*
Campus Setting Large city Large suburb Large suburb
Tuition & Fees (2017-2018) $2,838 for in-state; $9,661 for out-of-state* $2,444 for in-state; $8,732 for out-of-state* $6,556 for in-state; $18,954 for out-of-state*
% of First-Year Students Receive Some Form of Financial Aid (2017) 82%* 68%* 86%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) N/A - Open admissions* N/A - Open admissions* 54%*
Retention Rate (2017) N/A* N/A* 88% for full-time students; 77% for part-time students*
Graduation Rate (for those who began their studies in 2011) 31%* 33%* 57%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

Miami Dade College

MDC offers two associate degree programs, one for students interested in immediate employment and one for students interested in transferring to a 4-year program. The interior design program at MDC is housed in the School of Architecture and Interior design along with programs in construction technology, architectural design and architecture. Students in interior design create a work portfolio suitable for applying to a 4-year program or an entry-level position.

Associate of Arts in Interior Design

The Associate of Arts in Interior Design degree program is transferable to a bachelor's degree program. The curriculum includes general education courses along with a mixture of art, design and architecture classes. Students learn how the total design of a structure relates to the interior space and vice versa. History of interior design, lighting and landscaping are just a few of the topics covered in the program's courses.

Associate of Science in Interior Design Technology

This associate degree program is intended for students who want to seek employment after acquiring the degree, although the credits earned in this degree program may be transferable to a 4-year school. The curriculum for the program takes a hands-on and practical approach to learning foundational skills. Additionally, interior design courses cover the technical and theoretical aspects of the field.

Palm Beach State College

The program at this school meets the necessary education requirements for the State of Florida Board of Architecture and Interior Design's interior design licensing.

Associate of Science in Interior Design Technology

A minimum of 75 credits must be earned to receive this Associate of Science in Interior Design Technology degree. Students spend summers completing an internship and a course on building and barrier-free codes. In a student's first year, it is common to take classes in interior history, estimating and specifications, technical design and design graphics. In the second year of study, students move onto coursework in kitchen and bath design, sustainable design and interior lighting. It is important for students to plan their coursework in advance because some courses are only offered once a year.

Florida International University

The Council for Interior Design Accreditation has accredited the professional programs at Florida International University. Completing an FIU interior design program qualifies students to apply for interior design licenses after meeting any additional requirements set by the state.

Master of Interior Architecture

The Master of Interior Architecture degree program can be tailored to a student's level of education in the area of interior design. The program has a two-year track for students with a relevant bachelor's degree and a three-year track for those with baccalaureate degrees in an unrelated field. The two-year track is comprised of 63 credits in areas like color theory, computer applications in design, materials for interiors and the history of modern interiors. The three-year track includes 90 credits of classes in subject areas like visual notation, design foundations, lighting design, building systems for interior designers and project programming.

Master of Arts in Interior Architecture

At Florida International University, students can complete a post-professional Master of Arts in Interior Architecture. This program takes one year and one semester to complete and prepares students for work as educators in the field of interior design or to specialize in one area of interior design.


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