- Decide what type of program you want to attend.
The first step in going to interior design school is deciding where exactly you want to go. There are a lot of factors to consider, but first and foremost you should think about what type of degree you want to pursue. You have three main options: certificate degree, associate’s degree, and bachelor’s degree. If you earn a four-year degree you can always go on to receive a graduate degree in interior design, if you really love school and want to be ultra-competitive in the job market. You might want to think about how long you want to be in school, what type of job you hope to get right after graduation, how much money you want to make, and how much knowledge you already have of interior design. Once you have decided which of the three schooling options is right for you, you can start looking for programs that offer that type of degree in interior design.
- Make sure you meet all admissions requirements
Each school has a unique set of admissions requirements, although there are generally some common themes among colleges and vocational schools. You will need a high school diploma or GED, and may be asked to have a minimum GPA (grade point average) either from high school or your previous college (if you are a transfer student). Some schools also have stipulations regarding the standardized test scores you must have in order to be selected for admission. How rigorous of requirements you will need to meet depends on the competitiveness and selectiveness of the interior design program within the school. Also keep in mind that if you attend school online or only want to earn a certificate, you might not need to meet any admissions requirements at all, and will only need to complete a short signup process to get started on your studies.
- Submit the application and documentation
Before you submit an application, find out if you can apply directly to the interior design program or if you need to first apply for admissions to the school. If the situation is the ladder, you will need to earn acceptance into interior design courses after you get into the school itself. In fact, in some cases you actually have to apply to a second level of interior design courses about halfway through your time in college. It all depends on the structure of the school to which you are applying and the rigor of the program. Once you have figured out the specifics, you can submit an application online by answering questions about your grades, test scores, and extracurricular/community involvement. You will probably also have to submit transcripts from your previous school(s), and potentially teacher recommendations or work information as well. You might also have to take placement tests as part of the admissions process in order to be put into the appropriate level English and math classes.