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Finding a College in Interior Decorating

written by: Tia Ahmed•edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom•updated: 6/28/2011

Interior decorating is one of those skills that many believe is a talent that one is simply born with; however, in the art world, it is a talent that must be honed, approved and educated in order to shine in this economy. Here are a few colleges and higher education institutes that do just that.

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    The Search for Interior Decorating Degrees

    There are many ways to figure out which colleges offer the interior decorating degree and with the use of the Internet, the search can easily be narrowed. Using a refined search engine, CollegeBoard.com is able to filter through degrees to match current high school students or high school graduates with colleges that are ranked nationally in the U.S. and are offering the specific degree.

    Other ways to find interior decorating colleges or colleges that offer interior decorating degrees, includes speaking with the Art department of one's current school to get a brief idea of what type of schools one should look at or to speak with a career counselor. Other routes may include actively looking for on campus art schools that have gained fame through word of mouth, after all, some of the best schools needed to be known first. Since art school is relatively expensive, try to find schools that are willing to give additional grants based on high school or college graduate portfolios.

    Before applying for such a degree one must remember that these degrees, like most art degrees, should be applied with careful consideration. Some of the top colleges that offer such programs are highly competitive and getting into such colleges will be extremely difficult without a compilation of a portfolio that has years of work put into it. One of the more alternate routes to this degree would be to complete a college level program of any other subject and to continue to build a strong portfolio. Requirements for some major art institutions in the U.S. are demanding and therefore could be very troublesome if there isn't enough passion or drive for this particular degree.

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    Top Colleges that Offer Interior Decorating/Design Degrees

    Many colleges throughout the nation offer interior decorating degrees, but the following colleges have ranked high according to U.S. News statistics: University of Florida, University of Wisconsin- Madison, University of Texas- Austin, and George Washington University. All of these colleges not only offers the degree, but offers variations of the degree; for instance, University of Florida offers a Bachelor of Arts degree whereas George Washington University as of 2008 offers both a Bachelor of Arts as well as an Associates Degree in interior decorating/design.

    When applying for an interior decorating/design degree, students may be able to by pass competitive schools by going for liberal arts colleges instead of art schools. The difference being that these colleges are still difficult to get into, but will not focus on artistic abilities and therefore give beginners a chance to enter into the art world. Sometimes, community colleges, liberal arts colleges, or even online colleges will give students enough credits to transfer to prestigious art schools in New York.

    When students feel that their portfolio is good enough and they are able to apply to difficult schools regardless of building an astounding portfolio in college, they may apply to, what the U.S. News ranks as the top four super art schools, Pratt Institute, Rhode Island School of Design, University of Cincinnati, and New York School of Interior Design.

    In the end, the application process will differ greatly. Some students have built a portfolio since before their middle school art classes through private art lessons, and some students have shown an interest during their last years of high school and therefore need a year or two in any college in order to build that portfolio. Regardless of when one applies, getting into the top interior decorating colleges in the U.S. will be a challenge, but the rewards may be worth it.