Colleges Offering Accredited Online Interior Designing Programs

Wish to enter the field of interior designing? Constrained by personal and/or professional limitations? Online interior designing programs are useful for those aspiring future career options as interior designers, interior decorators, consultants, floral designers and numerous others such specialized career options. The following factors should be taken into consideration by aspiring students before enrolling in an online interior designing program.

Accreditation
For any successful interior designing program, accreditation is the only aspect of successful grading of your career path. If the chosen online institution is an accredited one, than students should have no worries at all about the acceptance of their degrees and job feasibility options for their career. Accreditation is important, considering the fact that many employers have particular selection criteria for employees in which accreditation is at times considered a major factor, so you need to make sure your chosen online college or university is accredited.

What to Expect in an Online Interior Designing Program
A good online university integrates the theoretical and practical aspects of interior designing fundamentals and concepts in such a way which provides balanced, yet in-depth learning of the subject. What is important here is that a student must have flair of reasoning, creativity and planning to gear up his/her successful acquisition of degree and attainment of a good career in the competitive field of interior designing. This means that simply acquiring a degree will not do the trick; you need to be creative and innovative to prove yourself in the job market.

College and Universities Which Offer Interior Designing Programs
The Council for Interior Design Accreditation lists various online schools and institutions, which currently offer online courses in the field and sub-field of interior designing. All of the listed online colleges and universities have been ranked as quality institutions in America. Some of them are:

o The University of Cincinnati in Ohio
o Pratt Institute in New York
o Kansas State in Kansas
o Cornell in New York
o Arizona State in Arizona

In addition to the above listed colleges and institutes, the Council recognizes two major online interior design programs offered by:

o The Art Institute of Toronto in Toronto, Canada
o American Intercontinental University in London, UK

The Art Institute of Toronto
This institute offers a student-centric curriculum and various practical insights to equip aspirants about the fundamentals of interior designing concepts and subject matter on the whole.

American Intercontinental University in London, UK
This university offers an associate and a bachelor’s interior design degree program for its aspirant online students. The bachelor’s program is well-acclaimed for its professionalism edge and student-centric approach. To earn an online associate degree, aspirants have to shell a tuition cost of around 4,000 British pounds per quarter.

The choice of an institute and college offering specialization certification courses and post-graduate diploma courses can be many but it is up to a student to choose wisely the kind of degree course best suited for his/her future career needs.

What are the Main Pros and Cons of an Online Interior Design Programs?
The main advantages of acquiring an online interior designing degree is definitely the ability to acquire it online, which saves time, money and other valuable resources. An aspirant can make use of online resources and reference database of knowledge mostly without spending money on it. Moreover, many web-based tools are available for streamlining the e-learning method to help students in transcending boundaries of conservative learning methodology.

The main disadvantages of acquiring an online interior designing degree is its accreditation factor, impersonal interface between trainer-student and lack of proper understanding of practical problems and on-site demonstrations in absence of proper guidance and motivation like that available for students learning in conventional class room settings.

Interior designing degrees can now be acquired online, thank to the wonders of the internet. But it is not as easy as it might sound, considering that there are not many online colleges and universities which offer the program and then comes the accreditation factor, which makes the process even harder. But after deciding upon which online institution you wish to go to, the online learning experience can be very interactive and upon acquisition of the degree, graduates can expect to hold good positions in the job market.

Social Media Guide for Interior Designers

According to the definition provided in Wikipedia:

“Social media are media for social interaction, using highly accessible and scalable communication techniques. Social media is the use of web-based and mobile technologies to turn communication into interactive dialogue. “

Social media is everywhere, from email to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn. As the web 2.0 was unleashed, communication and co-ordination with friends got easier. Now people around the world can see what their friends and family are doing and which things they are enjoying as they perform their daily chores.

The latest tools of today enable users to communicate with people well beyond their social circuit and well beyond their limits. Hence, the collaboration and co-ordination as well as the ability to convey one’s feelings have dramatically increased. Using these tools, everybody can be a publisher whether he knows how to use the tools effectively and target the intended audience.

The internet is turning into a big party where everyone shares ideas and experiences, be it interior design ideas or game room designs.

So if you are using the social media and sharing your decorating ideas, you are part of the online family and invited to the part. However, if you under estimate the social media, you are not welcome at the party which means you wouldn’t be a part of the audience altogether.

The members of the interior design industry apart from some prominent figures from major cities like Los Angeles interior designers and New York interior designers have not fully understood the advantages of social media which can be reaped by them easily. It has been observed that interior designers usually make a single web page on a free template and give their email address, and hence, mitigate the chances of prospective customers finding them.

Here are some tips to use social media effectively for your interior design business:

Identify target market

Identifying what your target market will be is very important. Remember that the current circle of people knowing you is minutiae as compared to the networking possibilities available on the net.

See where your customers are spending time online

Analyze carefully as to where your current and prospective customers are spending time online. Target the places where most of them are spending their time..

Engage your audience

Keep your audience engaged in various activities and interesting discussions, this helps them to understand you and vice versa.

Build an online PR

Build a solid online PR and make sure you give attention to queries of your customers.

Blogging

You can write a blog about your current and previous projects. Moreover, you can provide illustrations to make sure that potential customers can see your work, admire it and hire you in future.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

If you have a dedicated site, and a keyword search on a search engine does not return your site on top, use SEO tools to fine tune your site and improve its search engine ranking.

Great Free Online Resources For Interior Designers

Who doesn’t love free design information? Recently in one of the groups we belong to in LinkedIn, the CEO of Mudpie Design (a trend forecasting company) posted a great discussion. “Great resources for designers – Free!” This inspired us to take some websites from this discussion and add some of our own favorites to help designers and furniture manufacturers looking for freebies. This first list of a 2-part series is websites. Next month we will feature the top home furnishing blogs.

1stDibs

Why not look at the past to predict the future! 1stDibs is an antique website, focusing on high-end antique furniture, home decor, lighting, and has now added fashion and jewelry. We’re constantly amazed by this website, and there is no harm in getting inspiration from 70 year-old designs that are surprisingly on trend for 2010! Also, we recommend subscribing to their newsletters. The writers at 1stDibs have fantastically interesting comments on different styles and how interior designers should use them today.

2modern

The name pretty much says it all. This website has some of the best looking modern furniture, lighting, and home decor, on the web. The site’s design and feel are fun, and the editors are constantly adding new modern products. Also be sure to visit their Design Blog, which is also a fantastic source for wildly creative ideas in home furnishings. They have “Eco Friendly” and “Made in the USA” product sections, and a newsletter + RSS Feeds.

HomePortfolio

Home Portfolio is the largest database for home furnishing suppliers in the USA. This site is simple to navigate, featuring all types and styles of home furnishings to help interior designers find the right furniture for their products ( customers?). It works like an online catalog and is really simple to use.

Trendir

Trendir is a Home Decorating Trends Magazine. The Trendir Interiors website has fantastic posts; and although they call themselves “modern” interiors, they also feature some beautiful traditional home furnishings. They cover all items for the home, from bathroom hardware to outdoor living, and also cover architecture and appliances.

ElleDecor

The popular fashion magazine has made it easy for web users to dig through their past stories and images of products. The PointClickHome.com website features images from both Elle Decor and Metropolitan Home. Users can view great designs in the “Room Finder” and select the type and style of home. Home Furnishings can be found in the “Decorate” tab, and housewares are in the “Entertain” tab. Also, the blogs on this site are good: Savvy/Chic, Design Daily, Word on Modern Style, I on Design, Stylemonger, and Deal of the Day.

Thecoolhunter

This website focuses on ground-breaking design. Probably more for interior designers and architects, we think that everybody will enjoy the products, buildings, and fashion concepts these guys bring to a fun-to-use website. The most relevant area is the “Design” section, which can be found on their navigation menu. This site tends to feature the bright and exotic and is really fun.

Inmod.com

Another modern design focused retail website is Inmod. The coolest feature here is the “Design Your Own”. You can design your own pillows and bedding! Overall, this site very is similar to 2modern, and they have a blog, newsletter, and RSS feed. If you like modern, this site is a must see…

TODL.COM (Trade Only Design Library)

The Trade Only Design Library is another large database of products for home decor, furniture, and housewares. This site is operated by the same company that sets up the HD Expo in Las Vegas, for hospitality and commercial furnishings. While you cannot normally view this website if you enter directly, if you click this link to Hopitality Design, I have found a secret way to access the website!

Dwell.com

Dwell is a modern home magazine (print) but they also have a great website. It has a dedicated product section, which allows users to select what to view by product category, ranging from clocks to wall coverings.

ArchitectualDigest.com

Long one of the most prestigious architecture and home design inspiration magazines (print), Architectual Digest now has a decent website that allows free access to the design features and beautiful images that have kept this magazine on the shelves for almost 90 years! It is not as easy to navigate products on this site, as it shows the latest stories as features, but if you type in the name of the room or type of furniture into the search box, you should come up with some nice design concepts.