Interior Design

Interior design focuses on making residential, commercial, and institutional places aesthetically pleasing, functional, and safe. Requiring creative and motivated individuals, interior design has to take into account the purpose of the space, any themes the individual or company may want, and the safety of the end result. This area of study has a direct career path to Interior Designer. Interior design is available at all degree levels, including certificate level. Competition is generally considered to be high within this career.

Program attributes to consider when choosing an institution include asking whether the interior design program is part of the fine arts department or the architecture and building department, or whether it’s an independent program. It can change the types of classes, or focus of the major, depending on where it's housed. 

Associate Level

Opting for a 2-year associate’s degree in interior design won’t likely make students eligible for an interior designer position, but it can be a good segue into the subject. The curriculum will include 3D design, history of design, and design fundamentals.

Careers for graduates with an Associate in Interior Design: Interior Design Assistant. The average salary for this level of education is between $35,000 and $40,000.

Baccalaureate

The standard degree in this field is a baccalaureate, which usually takes four years to complete. A bachelor’s will expand upon the curriculum offered at the associate level, including knowledge on how to read blueprints, understand building codes as well as safety regulations, and use computer-aided drafting systems. The curriculum will also likely include courses on interior lighting, use of color, architecture, floral design, ergonomics, and professional practice. Psychology classes often play a role in interior design programs, as well. There will often be an option to specialize in specific types of interior design, such as in creating environmentally friendly spaces or set design for films or theatre.

A baccalaureate in interior design can come in two forms, as a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Interior Design and a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Interior Design. The BA will focus more on liberal arts courses in conjunction with major courses, while the BFA is often considered more a pre-professional degree with most of students’ time spent in major classes.

Careers for graduates with a baccalaureate in interior design: Interior Designer, Healthcare Designer, Corporate Designer, Green Interior Designer, Set Designer, Space Planner, Lighting Designer. The national average salary for an Interior Designer is $62,000.

Master Level

Graduate degrees in interior design will add on to knowledge learned during the baccalaureate. Depending on the program type, a Master of Arts (MA) in Interior Design curriculum may be geared towards students without a bachelor’s in interior design. On top of furniture design, drawing, and interior materials, programs often include a research and theoretical aspect. Some programs may also offer the opportunity to specialize.

The other option for this area of study is a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Interior Design, which, like most MFA programs, is typically considered to be a pre-professional degree due to the extra focus placed on the major subject. Students will learn to problem-solve, become proficient in visual communications and spatial planning, and learn the ins and outs of presentation techniques. The program will likely include courses on emerging materials, textiles and finishes, and more about the human factors in design.  

Careers for graduates with a masters in interior design: Interior Designer, Retail Display Manager, Consultant 

PhD in Interior Design

Doctorates in interior design are primarily for those wishing to become professors and teach future interior designers. The curriculum will include advanced knowledge and practices, application of artistic techniques, and research.

Careers for graduates with a doctorate in interior design: Academic Professor, Facility and Design Manager, Consultant, Lead Designer

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Colleges

“…The University of Florida is a great college to attend because it provides a very diverse environment- which includes diversity within the students, professors, and employees, and diversity within the studies. It is a beautiful university with...” – Melissa from Silver Springs, FL

“…it is a great school because of the atmosphere, teachers, and everything that has to do with austin. it is at an awesome location. i feel welcomed and happily plan to live and get a job here.” – Emile from Dallas, TX

“…Arizona State University is a great school. I attend the Walter Cronkite School for students of Mass Communication and Journalism and I love the experience I have gained from the college. I feel prepared for future jobs and work experience. ” – Kirsten from Phoenix, AZ

“…Purdue is basically a land of opportunity; you get out of it what you put in, and much, much more. More majors and minors than you can imagine, even more clubs and organizations--something for everyone! I love this school and campus to the bottom of...” – Marie from Goose Creek, SC

“…The University of Washington is a challenging school that blossoms independence and creativity. The majority of all faculty members are enthusiastic about the subject they teach, and are willing to assist all students. This school provides excellent...” – Ronald from Honolulu, HI

“…michigan state had everything i was looking for in a university-challenging classes, all types of students, and a beautiful location to call home. as an undecided freshman, i appreciated the wide variety of available classes and majors. the 500+...” – Rachel from Ann Arbor, MI

“…Ohio State is it's own small world. Once you get involved, which is a must, you cannot walk across campus without seeing someone you know. From academics to sports, Ohio State is an excellent school with long standing tradition. ” – Amarilis from Newbury, OH

“…Florida State University is an all-around excellent school and has provided me with a positive educational experience. Florida State also has a beautiful campus with many traditions that create an inclusive environment including the famous mascots...” – Alix from Oconomowoc, WI

“…indiana university has the most beautiful campus in all of indiana and is surprisingly very easy to get around despite how large it is. the students and professors are great and really easy to get along with, and are always willing to help out in any...” – Kyle from Merrillville, IN

“…howard university is an amazing school filled with ambitious students. this university helps better prepare their students for succession in today's society. every graduate from howard university will be gladly to express to you how they received a...” – Brittany from Washington, DC

“…The atmosphere of Baylor is very relaxing. The people on campus are really friendly. It is easy to make friends on a campus this size.” – Chalice from Pflugerville, TX

“…wsu is the perfect school for me. the academics are great, but the best part is the atmosphere of the town and the university. it is the perfect college in the perfect little college town!” – Megan from Sparks, NV

“…Central Michigan University has the best professors for the Recreation Department! Everyone here is a family and the people really do care about your well being and future. This college has made me a better person through it's programs.” – Jelina from Mt. Pleasant, MI

Auburn University
Auburn University, AL

“…auburn is a wonderful school with rich history and tradition. the faculty and staff are excellent and friendly, and always willing to help. the student life here is incredibly varied and offers something for everyone.” – Joshua from Auburn, AL

“…I would give Texas State a 10. Everyone is so nice and social and the campus is absolutely gorgeous! ” – Lauren from Keller, TX

“…OSU & Corvallis has so much to offer (year-round) it's sometimes hard to know where to start. It has a beautiful, relaxed campus with nearly 25,000 students & Corvallis' central location provides easy access to plenty of activities in less than 3...” – Earl from Tangent, OR

“…Colorado State University has given me the best college experience I could dream of. There are opportunities for anything you could imagine - and these opportunities are everywhere! Everyone is friendly, and all anyone wants is for each and every...” – Bailey

“…Virginia Tech is a beautiful place full a good people and food. The community is very welcoming and engaging to students. There is a wide variety of courses and you will always find something to do that you like.” – Delaney

“…my school, although huge, makes you feel like your at a small school with professors who actually care for your academics; my school works very hard to make sure that we the students are getting the help we need no matter what subject in school or...” – Anujin from Elk Grove Village, IL

“…George Washington is the only place I'd want to be. There's no other college in the world that is just a few steps from the White House and the Lincoln Memorial. GW is a large school, with a diverse student body who all come together for fun events...” – Meredith from Marlton, NJ

“…This campus is small enough to get to your classes in a reasonable time, but still big to find fun things to do. They have great places to eat with lots of variety. The people are all really friendly.” – Alex from Cincinnati, OH

“…This university offers great city living where museums, concerts and sports events are only a stones throw away. The opportunity offered to students to work 6 months inbetween academics is also appealing both in terms of seeing if your chosen major...” – Sean from Quakertown, PA

“…Iowa State is a large university with the small college feel. It has many students but everywhere I go, I see people I know, and that are in my classes. Everyone is very nice and the professors know what they are teaching.” – Grace from Vermont

“…The University of Tennessee is a very large and diverse campus where there are plenty of opportunities to get involved on campus. It is listed as one of the top ranking research institutions in the region and is highly ranked among the nation. UTK is...” – Isa from Chattanooga, TN

“…fiu is a great school for anyone who is looking for a diverse group of students and a great education. teachers will always have office hours open to help you whenever you need it and they truly encourage you to come ask them for help. fiu also makes...” – Vlera from Washington, DC

“…iupui is has a great educational atmosphere that goes out of its way to teach its students valuable life experience. iupui is a university that teaches its students to try to make impact on its community by doing various volunteer activities. the...” – Arnesha from Jeffersonville, IN

“…illinois state university is a wonderfully diverse university. since being here, i have learned so many life lessons as well as the tools needed to become a wonderful teacher; as they are wonderful as well. all in all, illinois state is not a...” – Tiffani from Chicago, IL

“…UNC Greensboro is a very diverse school in a positive light. Because this school is so diverse, I have so many more opportunities I feel open to exploring rather than feeling the pressure of needing to be a part of something. Being a UNCG Spartan has...” – Charlene from Colfax, NC

“…Madison is probably one of the most diverse colleges in the state of Wisconsin. Here, I have met a variety of people from all sorts of different backgrounds and have been introduced to a multitude of experiences. All in all, there's no place like...” – Amber from Greenleaf, WI

“…appalachian state university is a wonderful school that fosters an amazing environment for learning and personal growth. in such a short time i have grown to love this university and the small college town that surrounds it as my own home away from...” – Joseph from Winston Salem, NC

“…San Jose State University is a beautiful campus where a person could just sit and hang out with their friends or go downtown where all other students are studying or just talking. SJSU provides a variety of activities including sororities...” – Kaela from Fairfield, CA

“…The environment is very open and accepting, it gives everyone the opportunity to create a home. The curriculum is intense, however the instructors are more than equipt to teach college students, and willing to help outside of class. Overall, the...” – Monica from Glendale, AZ

“…East Carolina is one of the best universities in North Carolina! It's a hidden gem! It has so much to offer! You will never be bored here and you will find the classes challenging and rewarding!” – Kristyn from Holly Springs, NC

“…The University of Oklahoma has a wealth of opportunity to offer. It is a beautiful campus and the classes are kept small to offer individual attention to students. It also offers a lot of ways to get involved and give back to the community as well as...” – Brianna from Frisco, TX

“…You can tell that (most) teachers really care about their students, and have been doing their best to be there despite all of the drastic budget cuts. It has impacted the availability of services, which is disappointing; but you can see where the...” – Liz from Daly City, CA

“…The University of Arkansas has exactly what everyone should want from their college experience. It offers a quality education, a lively and beautiful atmosphere, and endless opportunities to get involved, meet new people, and make memories that will...” – Michaela from Fayetteville, AR

“…A friendly campus nestled in the heart of a city that's small enough to feel comfortable, with home town charm. The instructors know their stuff and deliver lectures of the highest caliber, providing a friendly learning environment that welcomes all...” – Jessica from Fresno, CA

“…I have been in the world of education since graduating--21 years ago--and have highly valued my education from Ball State University. I was well-prepared to face the challenges of a career. As an Art Ed major, both schools served me extremely well. ” – Laurie from Cedar Park, TX

“…Pratt is an oasis in the city for artistic people looking to develop and expand their skills. Prestigious and rigorous, this school is not for everybody, but it is a guaranteed that if you can get through four years here, you will be able to find...” – Landry from Scottsdale, AZ

“…Kent State University is way too often grossly stereotyped and given the reputation of having low standards. I have found my programs and the staff that I have worked with to be highly qualified. The atmosphere and diversity of the campus truly...” – Robert from Strongsville, OH

“…High Point is a very clean, organized, and up-and-coming school in North Carolina. It is a four-year university, although it is working on expanding currently and creating new masters degree programs as well. It has a generally friendly atmosphere...” – Caitlin from Daleville, VA

“…eastern is a fun, friendly school. all the professors are nice and really good at helping you retain the most knowledge possible. your fellow students are welcoming and willing to help all you have to do is ask.” – Stephanie from Ypsilanti, MI

“… Umass Amherst is a great school with abundant of activities and academic assistance. Within a nice and suitable environment to study and learn, you will able to explore one of the most beautiful places in the world.” – Jian from Jamaica Plain, MA

“…kansas state university is an all around great university weither it be their sports team or academics. this university has such a welcoming atmosphere. manhattan and kansas state have a small town feel but in a bigger college experience.” – Student from Manhattan, KS

“…The environment is amazing and not only the teachers but everyone is very helpful. Western will your home away from home and you will be proud to call yourself a Catamount. At Western, there is so much to do academically and recreationally so you...” – Samantha from Clayton, NC

“…Everything about this university is amazing! Not only is transportation free to go around all the city, but it's affordable, great learning environment, friendly, interactive, and great dorms. The distances between the buildings are perfect and so...” – Patricia from Kalamazoo, MI

“…Oklahoma State University is an amazing place to live. The second I stepped on campus the current students and the staff made me feel like I was at home. The faculty is always friendly and willing to work with you, allowing you to have a successful...” – Alyssa from Sapulpa, OK

“…Suffolk University has great professors that not only challenge your mind but guide you thoroughly through the course. The campus is in the heart of Boston which is another plus. And there are also so many opportunities for clubs and activities for...” – Desiree from Beverly, MA

“…Columbia College Chicago was more than just a great experience for me. I can't even explain how diverse the people are there as far as talent and culture . They really give you a lot of space to embrace who you are and they support you in any way...” – Courtney from Saint Louis, MO

“…it has a beautiful ivy league feel, with all of the brick. our business program is nationally know. we have an amazing greek system.” – April from Moscow, ID

“…This school requires a good amount of studying and focus, plus you'll be walking quite a bit from class to class. It has a laid back atmosphere, and the teachers are helpful. It's a very good value for the price. ” – Paul from Long Beach, CA

Marist College
Poughkeepsie, NY

“…marist is a small campus with small classes in which professors learn your name and know your specific learning style. there is a lot of school spirit. there are many opportunities for off-campus trips into new york city and other exciting options. ” – Leah from Seaford, NY

“…georgia southern is a great place to go if you are outgoing and like being around people. the campus is absolutely beautiful, and the library is unlike anything you've ever seen. being involved on campus is the best thing you could do for yourself!” – Rebecca from Acworth, GA

“…This school is amazing. The teachers are very understanding and seem to love their jobs. The campus is very beautiful, clean, and very easy to navigate.” – Kirby from Chesapeake, VA

“…the university of memphis has a surprisingly diverse faculty and student body for a southern school. there are loads of student help and services available here as well. it's best feature by far is frosh camp, a camp for incoming freshmen to learn...” – Rachel from Memphis, TN

“…Ferris State University is a well organized college, full of helpful professors. I love it there and the food and dinning is also wonderful. This university has a friendly atmosphere. ” – Katherine from Newaygo, MI

“…Valdosta is a very fun school. There is a good balance between academics and social life in the town!” – Marcia from Columbus, GA

“…Utah State University is a great place to attend if you like to be outside (during the spring and summer of course). There are many things to do on campus. Classes are remotely easy to find. ” – Jenna

“…TCU is a small-medium size school that is gaining national recognition in academics and sports. The community is very supportive and school-spirited. The students and professors are all passionate about their particular area of study and just...” – Becca from California

“…Montana State University has a very inspiring feel to it. Not only am I surrounded by motivated learners on a daily basis, I am also surrounded by intriguing landscapes that constantly reward my efforts. I've found my niche in the Earth Sciences...” – Erika from Polson, MT

“…The physical functionality of the school has its ups and downs. Though there are some students here with non-academic goals, there are just as many dedicated, aspiring professionals. The teaching and administration, and the opportunities offered are...” – Ashaun from Carbondale, IL

“…virginia commonwealth university is a terrific school.i don't recommend this school to someone who isn't use to a big city. also if you don't like big classrooms with 150 plus students, i don't recommend it.” – Christa from Lynchburg, VA

“…New School is a wonderful school, small classes and very involved student and faculty. As students we also benefit from great lectures and organized events involving highly recognized professionals in fields from fashion design to sustainable...” – Saydee from Brooklyn, NY

“…i would rate fit, 9 out of 10. fit offers endless opportunities that allow students to get involved in the fashion industry in college. all of the professors and faculty are serious about every students success. last but not least, fashion institute...” – Michelle Smith

“…The academics are rigorous RIT is not a place to take your academics lightly. How good your social life is depends on what your looking for. If your a geek you'll fit right in but if more of a party person it will be harder for you to find your niche...” – Ernesto from Inglewood, CA

“…A small private school in the midst of big changes in the upcoming years. Good community within the school that reaches out and makes use of the surrounding community as well. Teachers and advisers on the whole are very supportive and will do what...” – Britnee from Annandale, VA

“…This college is meant for those who want to be themselves or want to discover themselves. The classes feel almost personalized, everyone cares about your education and how you do. Basically, everyone accepts you without judging you and wants the best...” – Ana from Savannah, GA

“…Kean University is a great school to attend if you like diversity, a beautiful campus, and a great education.” – Brianna from Piscataway, NJ

“…plenty of interest clubs available. cultural community with friendly people. great staff who are always willing to help.” – Morgan from Rock Hill, SC

“…If you're looking for a small campus with a big campus feel, then UNI is the place for you! Activities are available for everyone who wants to get involved; whether you're interested in a club linked to a major or a special interest you have, the...” – Katlyn from Spencer, IA

“…Park University is a very DIVERSE school. It is also very private not cluttered like most of your public schools. The teachers there also give you more attention then any other school I went to.” – Chaz from Saint Louis, MO

“…BYU-IDAHO is spectacular. It has all the curriculum that I am looking for. The spiritual environment is great for my spiritual growth. One of the best religious schools.” – VALERIE from ORLANDO, FL

“…weber state is a great school. i love the diversity here. i have made so many wonderful friends as well!” – Karlie from Ogden, UT

“…The University of Charleston is small private college located on the Kanawha River in Charleston, WV. The professors genuinely care about each individual student's grades, progress, and success in his or her respective field. This institution is...” – ElizabethR from Charleston, WV

“…samford is a great place to learn in a christian environment. there is a great student to faculty ratio, giving students plenty of opportunity to seek individual help. the faculty are warm and inviting, and always willing to help students improve...” – Megan

“…palm beach state college is an affordable and highly diverse educational institutional in palm beach county. they offer many courses in hundreds of majors and also offer many great activities both on and off campus. also, palm beach state college...” – Ryan from Palm Beach Gardens, FL

“…UB is essentially a diverse small friendly community providing a great atmosphere with much to benefit and learn from. The programs as well as courses satisfy my academic endeavor for the pursuit of knowledge. Living on campus is an individualistic...” – Brian from Yonkers, NY

“…The U of M has exceptional opportunities for those undergraduates who want to pursue research. The campus has a very diverse population with students coming from all over the world. The classes are difficult, but numerous sources of help are...” – Staci from MN

“…Houston Community College is great! It's easier to learn here, because of the smaller classes. In addition, the classes are more affordable.” – Lashandra from Houston, TX

“…Seattle Pacific University is a great school. They have good food, great faculty, and kind fellow students. I believe my next three years here will be very good.” – Josiah from Battle Ground, WA

“…the community here is an incredible blessing. the close-knit relationships formed are life changing. the professors truly care about each student.” – Sharon from Abilene, TX

“…Buffalo State is very diverse. They have a really great program for my major and I love the fact thats in the middle of the city and surrounded by art.” – Aleeah from Buffalo, NY

“…Awesome staff/teachers/workers, number 2 in the country for travel abroad, 100% of students complete professional internships! AWESOME! AWESOME! AWESOME!” – Alexis from Durham, NC

“…If you are interested in studying abroad then Arcadia University is the school for you. It is very open to all cultures hence it is very diverse. Finally the professors and staff are very friendly and approachable and there is a one on one with the...” – Imoinda from Philadelphia, PA

“…Professors with Masters or professional experience Attractive modern buildings Attractively dressed girls” – Harshana from Westwood, CA

“…mtsu is a great university. it is quickly becoming the best school in tennessee's state system of colleges and universities. the professors are great as is the support staff, who will free you up to learn.” – Luther from Nashville, TN

“…NYIT has two campuses in New York. I enthusiastically attend the Manhattan Campus. The location in incredible and curriculum is challenging.” – lee martin from Belmar,, NJ

“…pima is an outstanding community college. the college makes it convenient for students with campus locations all around the city of tucson. the staff for the most part is very helpful, knowledgeable and friendly. ” – Shanna from Marana, AZ

“…this is a great school to attend. there are small classroom sizes and teachers who really care. this is an awesome place to make friends for life.” – katie from Saint Louis, MO

“…Endicott College is an institution based on helping the needs of students. With rigorous course work, an overload of student activities and an involved president, EC is somewhere worth spending the next four years of my life. The college has a wide...” – Alyssa

“…Fullerton college is certainly one of the better community colleges in california. Enrolling in classes is hard though. However, the campus has great reputation.” – Suman from LA Habra, CA

“…montgomery college is an affordable, conveniently located, and diverse campus in which a student can gain the best experience and knowledge they need to succeed.” – Alexis from Germantown, MD

“…the best school i could ever have attended. the staff is so professional, warm, caring, and helpful. the campus community is more like a family.” – Beverly from Raleigh, NC

“…mesa community college is one of the largest community colleges in the nation and it is located in a busy area. but it still manages to have classes that are small enough that they can deliver a personal, meaningful student-teacher experience. on top...” – Charles from Chandler, AZ

“…College of Dupage has changed alot and has become a very beautiful school to attend. It has added alot of new building to help each major get a better education experience. The school has expanded alot and allows personal rooms of education so...” – Thomas from Justice, IL

“…A rapidly expanding university. With small class sizes and professors who care about your growth. Located in one of the premiere cities to go to school in.” – Stephen from Belchertown, MA

“…the recent change in collin turning into a 4 year university has helped the university and student reach a higher level of education. it has made it possible to become more prepared to transfer into a larger state university such as utd. overall the...” – Ernesto Plano, Tx

“…the brenham campus is small enough to walk but big enough to get plenty of exercise. there are many clubs available to join and there is always free fun things going on. they also have great helpful teachers that really do care about their students...” – Faith from Bellville, TX

“…South Dakota State University has a great campus. The buildings are beautiful. The classrooms are easy to find and the professors are willing to help with any questions.” – Sheela from Lamberton, MN