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Degree Overview: Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Interior Design

Majors Overview April 18, 2015

Get information about Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree programs in Interior Design and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree Programs in Interior Design

The school of architecture at a university typically offers four-year Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Interior Design programs. Students enrolled in the programs learn about core business fundamentals like marketing, economics, and accounting, to augment education in design basics, such as decorative arts, textiles, and architecture history. Specific skills are also taught to students, who learn how to operate computer-aided design technology, read blueprints, understand building codes, and decipher market trends.

Students’ career prospects are enhanced through participation in professional internships before they graduate. Apart from completing internships, students complete portfolios of their work to showcase their skills and knowledge to potential employers. Graduates of the program may need to obtain state licensure in order to practice the profession, the requirements for which may vary by state.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a GED certificate or a high school diploma. General preparatory courses in history, chemistry, mathematics, and English may also be required to be completed before students can be admitted to the program.

Students w hohave already fulfilled admission requirements to a larger university or college may typically be required to seek separate admission to the school of architecture. Successful completion by students in their freshman and sophomore years of a series of design-related courses and submission of a portfolio of design work may be a mandatory requirement before students can enroll in the interior design program.


Program coursework combines classroom instruction and hands-on experiences in areas such as design preparation, drafting, design technology, and independent research. Core coursework may include subject areas such as the following:

•Computer-aided design
•Non-residential interiors
•Residential interiors
•Lighting design
•Landscape design
•Basic drawing

Career Choices

Those who complete a bachelor’s degree program in interior design can seek jobs in various professional settings and positions. They may choose from career options such as:

•Kitchen and bath designer
•Home decorator
•Lighting specialist
•Commercial interior designer

Job and Wage Outlook

In 2013, the average annual wage ranging between $35,290 and $67,110 was earned by the middle 50% of interior designers, which comprised commercial, residential, and kitchen and bath decorators, among others (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, job growth rate of 13% have been predicted for the interior design industry (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Licensure may be compulsory for interior designers. Licensure is available through passage of the National Council for Interior Design Qualification’s examination. Six years of experience in the industry augmented by education will qualify students to take the exam. Licensure is maintainable through continuing education.

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