What Classes To Take For Interior Design? A Detailed Guide

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Considering a foray into the vibrant world of interior design? You’re not alone. According to a recent survey, interest in home improvement and decor surged by 40% in the past year. Now comes the pressing question: What Classes To Take For Interior Design? Whether you’re seeking to spruce up your own space or kick-start a promising career, understanding the educational landscape is crucial. 

Understanding the Basics of Interior Design Education

You might think interior design is all about picking out funky lampshades and deciding on the best rug to go with your sofa. But there’s a lot more to it.

Dive into the world of interior design and you’ll quickly realize it’s a complex, multifaceted industry. Sure, having an eye for aesthetics helps, but there’s a whole world of knowledge waiting for you. Did you know that the average person spends roughly 93% of their life indoors? With that much time spent inside, it’s no wonder we all crave spaces that are both functional and beautiful.

The interior design market was valued at a whopping $130 billion! With such a lucrative industry at play, it’s no surprise that many decide to get formal training. This opens up doors (quite literally in some cases) to a world of opportunities in the design realm.
Now, let’s delve deeper into what classes to take for interior design and why they matter so much.

Core Courses for an Interior Design Major

Hands-On Interior Design Studio

Ever seen a room and thought, “It looks okay, but something’s off?” Chances are, there’s a lack of design theory at play.
Design theory forms the backbone of interior design. It’s the set of principles that guide designers in creating balanced, harmonious spaces. So, starting with a solid grasp of design theory is key.

Course Title Description
Design Theory Principles guiding balanced, harmonious space creation.
Studio Classes Hands-on application of design theory, experimentation, and style refinement.
Technical Drawing Learning technical drawing skills and software proficiency (AutoCAD, SketchUp, etc.).
History of Design Understanding the evolution of design trends and their influence.
Materials and Fabrics Study of various materials and fabrics for design applications.

Here, you’ll take all that theory and put it into practice, making mistakes, learning, and refining your style. Then comes the nitty-gritty: technical drawing and software. With technology’s ever-growing influence, designers now have a suite of tools at their fingertips. Software such as AutoCAD, SketchUp, and Adobe Creative Suite become a designer’s best friends.

For a deeper dive into the core courses, check out this detailed guide which maps out all you need to know.

Early Preparation: High School Courses

High School Art Class For Interior Design

If you’re still in high school and the design bug has bitten you, don’t fret! There are classes you can take right now to prepare.
Art and design subjects are given. They’ll give you a foundation in color theory, composition, and more. For more details refer to this article on Design Concepts: What Is Positive Space In Interior Design?

Course Type Course Name Description
Art and Design Color Theory and Composition Foundation in color principles, spatial relationships, and visual aesthetics.
Drafting Architectural Drawing Basics of architectural drawing, introducing students to scale, measurements, and plans.
Architecture Building Structure Understanding the structure of buildings, essential knowledge for interior designers.

Here, you’ll start to understand the structure of buildings, which, as you can imagine, is quite handy for an interior designer!

Diving Deeper: Advanced Classes and Specializations

You know, interior design isn’t static; it’s like fashion. One moment avocado-green appliances are all the rage and the next, everyone’s all about stainless steel.

The history of interior design is littered with such transformations. Remember when everyone was about to open floor plans? Now, people are sectioning off spaces for specialized needs like home offices. One major catalyst? Global influences. Just as sushi made its way from Japan to worldwide fame, interior design elements travel. Ever heard of Hygge? It’s a Danish term used to acknowledge a moment or feeling. But it’s also an entire design trend focused on coziness. Global connections have indeed shaped today’s hottest design trends.

Specialized Courses for Focused Learning

Not all interior designs are made equal. No, we’re not just talking about good vs bad design; it’s about specialization.

There’s a commercial design, where you deck out offices, restaurants, and other business spaces. And then there’s residential design, where you’re crafting the perfect oasis for someone’s personal space.

And in our modern age, where Earth is not just a planet but a responsibility, sustainable and green design has surged to the forefront. It’s about making spaces beautiful without leaving a mammoth carbon footprint.
Keen to explore more about specialized courses? This guide might just be your new best friend. It digs deep into what makes each specialty unique.

‘What Classes To Take For Interior Design: Choosing the Right College

Ah, the age-old question: Which college should I attend? When it comes to interior design, it’s not just about the cafeteria food quality or the dormitory view. It’s about the program.

Accredited programs are the gold standard in the design world. They’ve undergone rigorous evaluations to ensure they meet specific academic and professional standards. So, they’re not just making things up as they go along.
But among the accredited, which are the crème de la creme? Every aspiring designer dreams of attending a top-notch institution that propels them to stardom.

Feeling lost? Don’t fret. Here’s a list of top interior design colleges and what they offer.

Real-world Application: Beyond the Classroom

Interior Designer's Versatile Portfolio Showcase

So you’ve aced your interior design classes and can now distinguish Rococo from Art Deco in your sleep. Congrats! But in the real world, potential employers aren’t as interested in your dream journal as they are in your actual designs.

Enter The Portfolio. Think of it as your design diary but with less teenage angst and more showstopping living rooms. A diverse portfolio showcases not just your best work, but also your versatility. Whether it’s a minimalist bachelor pad or a baroque-inspired ballroom, make sure you flaunt your range.

To have a portfolio, you need experience. To get experience, often, you need a portfolio. Solution? Internships and apprenticeships. These experiences can be more invaluable than a golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. They offer firsthand exposure, mentorship, and – you guessed it – portfolio material.

Continued Learning and Certifications

The world of interior design is dynamic. And no, we don’t just mean the ever-changing whims of homeowners. Design trends, technologies, and tools evolve, and to stay relevant, one must keep learning.

Industry certifications can be the difference between being an ordinary designer and the designer everyone wants to hire. Think of them as the extra sprinkles on your already delicious design donut. They testify to your dedication, expertise, and, let’s face it, your sheer awesomeness.

The reality is, the design world doesn’t stand still, and neither should you. Yearning for more juicy details? Dive deep into this well-curated piece on how to truly become an interior designer.

Exploring Interior Design Careers and Paths

When folks hear ‘interior design’, they think of someone picking out throw pillows. But the industry is as multifaceted as a perfectly cut diamond (or a well-designed chandelier). From residential consultants to commercial design maestros, the roles within the interior design universe are vast and varied.

Networking isn’t just for computer systems. In the design realm, building connections can lead to collaborations, contracts, and even your own HGTV show (one can dream, right?). From industry events to casual coffee chats, never underestimate the power of a handshake (or a well-timed LinkedIn request).

Feeling overwhelmed? Wondering what path beckons? Navigate your way through this maze by understanding the multiple career avenues in interior design. It’s more than just picking out curtains, after all.

Frequently Asked Questions

What core courses fall under ‘What Classes To Take For Interior Design’?

Design theory, studio classes, and technical drawing are some of the foundational courses for budding interior designers.

Is formal education mandatory for a career in interior design?

While not always mandatory, formal education in interior design often opens doors to better job opportunities and client trust.

How do high school courses contribute to interior design?

High school art and design subjects provide an early foundation, acquainting students with basic drafting and architectural concepts.

Are there specialized courses in interior design?

Yes, students can opt for courses in commercial vs residential design, sustainable design, and more.

How significant are internships in this field?

Internships offer invaluable practical experience, allowing students to apply theoretical knowledge and build a robust portfolio.

What’s the importance of a diverse portfolio in interior design?

A diverse portfolio showcases a designer’s versatility and creativity, often being a pivotal factor during job placements.

Are there certifications available in interior design?

Indeed! Industry-specific certifications can elevate a designer’s credibility and reflect their expertise in specialized areas.


Embarking on a career in interior design is not just about inherent talent but also about acquiring the right skills and knowledge. This guide on What Classes To Take For Interior Design has aimed to be your compass, pointing you toward the right academic and practical paths. Remember, the world of design is vast, offering countless opportunities for those ready to learn and innovate. So, why wait? Take the next step in your interior design journey today. Keep creating, keep designing, and let your spaces tell their stories.

Thank you for reading!