Interior Design

Program Overview

Interior design intersects the fine and applied arts, social sciences, humanities, and building sciences. To practice interior design is to craft, through design acts, architectural interiors that are sensible, thought-provoking, fitting, and safe for their inhabitants. The interior design program at West Virginia University prepares students for entry-level interior design practice and meets the education requirement, via Route 2, for National Council for Interior Design Qualifications (NCIDQ) certification. NCIDQ certification is the basic credential required by most states that license interior design professionals. In addition to an educational requirement, NCIDQ certification requires the completion of two years in a professional internship as an interior designer and passing the NCIDQ examination.

The interior design program offers the Bachelor of Science (BS) degree and is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).

Career Opportunities

Recent alumni of the program are employed by interior design and architecture firms, while others have pursued graduate degrees in fields including interior design, architecture, historic preservation and sustainability studies. Some have followed less traditional paths in design publishing, product sales, and entrepreneurship, to name a few.

According to the United States Department of Labor (Occupational Outlook Handbook), the 2016 median pay for interior designers was approximately $49,810 per year. Employment for interior designers is expected to rise 4% between 2016 and 2026.

Program Opportunities

In addition to the required study abroad experience, students have opportunities to enroll in courses associated with interior design’s allied programs and faculty within the School of Design and Community Development. Courses in product design, sustainability, design studies, and global economies are regularly offered, and a minor in Sustainable Design is available.

The interior design program has an active student chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID), and all interior design majors are encouraged to join its ranks and maintain membership throughout their studies.

Admission Requirements

The interior design program at WVU is a competitive access major with required sequential studio course offerings and elective courses in interior design. Four (4) qualifying courses are offered during the first year of study, These are:

  • ID 293A Interior Design Peer Mentoring      
  • ID 110 Introduction to Interior Design    
  • ID 125 Interior Design Foundations
  • DSGN 293  Design Representation

To continue in the major beyond the first year, students must successfully complete ID 125 with a grade of B- or better and each of the other three courses with a grade of C- or better. Additionally, in order to become eligible for selection to continue in the second year, a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.67 must be earned in the first-year qualifying courses.

If more than twenty students apply to move forward into the second year, only the top twenty students will be allowed to continue in the major. The top twenty students will be determined based upon:

  • Cumulative GPA ranking in the first year qualifying courses
  • Performance in the Gateway Project conducted at the end of the first year
  • Overall GPA
  • A Faculty Interview, if requested by the faculty

Click here to view the Suggested Plan of Study

General Education FOUNDATIONS

Please use this link to view a list of courses that meet each GEF requirement.

NOTE: Some major requirements will fulfill specific GEF requirements. Please see the curriculum requirements listed below for details on which GEFs you will need to select.

General Education Foundations
F1 - Composition & Rhetoric3-6
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research
Accelerated Academic Writing
F2A/F2B - Science & Technology4-6
F3 - Math & Quantitative Skills3-4
F4 - Society & Connections3
F5 - Human Inquiry & the Past3
F6 - The Arts & Creativity3
F7 - Global Studies & Diversity3
F8 - Focus (may be satisfied by completion of a minor, double major, or dual degree)9
Total Hours31-37

Please note that not all of the GEF courses are offered at all campuses. Students should consult with their advisor or academic department regarding the GEF course offerings available at their campus.

Curriculum Requirements

Minimum GPA of 2.67 in all ID courses is required
Minimum grade of C- in all ID courses is required
GEF Requirements
ENGL 101
ENGL 102
Introduction to Composition and Rhetoric
and Composition, Rhetoric, and Research
CSAD 270Effective Public Speaking (may fulfill GEF 4)3
DSGN 340Design for Energy Efficiency (may fulfill GEF 2A)3
GEF 2A (non-lab) course3
ARHS 120Survey of Art History 1 (may fulfill GEF 6)3
or ARHS 160 Survey of Art History 2
GEFs 3, 5, and 812
Foreign Language (6 credits in the same language)6
University Requirements
ANRD 191First-Year Seminar1
Major Requirements
ID 100Interior Design Peer Mentoring1
ID 110Introduction to Interior Design3
ID 125Design Foundations3
ID 155Interior Design Graphics 13
ID 200Interior Materials and Structures3
ID 225Space Planning3
ID 230History of Interiors and Furniture 13
ID 235Interior Design Graphics 23
ID 240Codes and Interior Construction2
ID 260History of Interiors and Furniture 2 (fulfills Writing and Communication Skills requirement)3
ID 270Interior Lighting Design3
ID 293Special Topics (Design Representation)3
ID 325Computer-Aided Drafting and Design2
ID 330Design for Quality of Living3
ID 355Contract Interior Design 13
ID 375Residential Interior Design3
ID 376Interior Design Graphics 32
ID 420Interior Design Professional Practices3
ID 450Interior Design Seminar1
ID 455Contract Interior Design 2 (Capstone experience)3
Semester Study Abroad12
Electives (Number of electives may vary based on GEF and other courses selected; students must earn 120 credits to graduate)18
Total Hours120

Suggested Plan of Study

First Year
ID 1253ID 293 (Design Representation)3
ID 1103ENGL 101 (GEF 1)3
ID 1001GEF3
ARHS 120 or 160 (GEF 6)3GEF3
 14 15
Second Year
ID 1553ID 2253
ID 2003ID 2353
ID 2303ID 2402
ID 3252ID 2603
ENGL 102 (GEF 1)3Foreign Language (fulfills GEF 8)3
Foreign Language (fulfills GEF 7)3 
 17 14
Third Year
Semester Study Abroad12ID 2703
 ID 3753
 ID 3762
 CSAD 270 (GEF 4)3
 DSGN 340 (GEF 2A)3
 12 17
Fourth Year
ID 3303ID 4501
ID 3553ID 4553
ID 4203Free Electives12
Free Electives6 
 15 16
Total credit hours: 120

Major Learning Outcomes

interior design

Interior designers create architectural interiors that improve inhabitants’ quality of life and protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Upon graduation from the interior design program at WVU, students will be able to demonstrate entry-level professional competencies that include:

  • applying the elements and principles of design to the analysis and development of architectural interiors;
  • understanding relationships between architecture, architectural interiors, interior artifacts, and the human condition – through historical, theoretical, social, and scientific lenses;
  • utilizing hand and computer drawing and modeling technologies, techniques and conventions in the study, visualization, and presentation of architectural interiors;
  • selecting and integrating appropriate building materials and construction assemblies; building systems; finishes, furnishings & equipment (FFE); and codes during the design of architectural interiors;
  • understanding professional and ethical responsibilities, opportunities, and constraints associated with interior design practices.

These competencies are introduced in both design studio and lecture courses and are developed and expanded incrementally along the curriculum. The holistic integration and synthesis of these competencies in the design of architectural interiors are centered in design studio courses which are rigorous laboratories and typically have a high number of contact/meeting hours in relation to credit hours.

Maintaining Good Standing

In order to remain in the program, interior design students are required to maintain at least a 2.67 GPA in ID courses. Students' GPAs will be monitored each semester. Any student who has an ID GPA below 2.67 will be notified of the deficiency and will have one semester to raise their ID GPA to 2.67 or above. Students who do not raise their ID GPA to 2.67 or above after one semester may not be permitted to enroll again in interior design courses.

All interior design students are required to earn at least a C- in all ID courses.

All studio courses are to be taken sequentially. Any student who has earned a grade of D+ or lower in any of the interior design studio courses will be notified of the problem and will not be permitted to enroll in their next ID studio course until the course in which a D+ or lower was earned is repeated and completed with a grade of C- or higher. Interior design studio courses are: ID 125, ID 155, ID 225, ID 235, ID 355, ID 375, ID 376, and ID 455. Any student who earns a grade of D+ or lower in ID 455 must retake it and earn a C- or higher in order to graduate.

Typically, only one section of each interior design course is offered annually.  Therefore, repeating a studio course adds one year to the student's college career.

Computer Expectation Policy

All students are expected to have, upon the first day of the ID 155 course, a computer that meets the interior design program's hardware and software specifications. These specifications are updated annually and published by the beginning of May. Please consult the interior design advising booklet for a full copy of the policy.

Studying Abroad

Graduation from the interior design program requires a full semester of study abroad through a WVU approved program. While only six credit hours earned abroad are required to fulfill the study abroad requirement, graduation in four years typically requires that students complete approximately fifteen (15) credit hours during the study abroad semester. Among courses completed during study abroad, students must successfully complete at least two courses (6 credit hours) in design, and at least half of all credit hours earned must be in art and design subjects.

The semester study abroad requirement may already be satisfied for interior design students who are non-U.S. citizens studying at WVU with a student visa. These students should meet with the program coordinator for advising during pre-registration for the semester that their cohort studies abroad to identify acceptable design and art courses that may be taken on-campus during the typical study abroad semester.

ID 100. Interior Design Peer Mentoring. 1 Hour.

PR: ID major. New students in interior design participate with upper division mentors in a variety of activities designed to acquaint the students with peers and faculty and to enhance their understanding of the field of interior design.

ID 110. Introduction to Interior Design. 3 Hours.

Introduction to design philosophy, elements and principles, universal and sustainable design, and aesthetic and functional evaluation in the context of interior environments using design as a methodology and problem- solving process.

ID 125. Design Foundations. 3 Hours.

PR or CONC: ID 110. Application of the theoretical elements and principles of design to two-and three-dimensional compositions.

ID 155. Interior Design Graphics 1. 3 Hours.

Studio experience reading and drafting architectural plans, elevations, sections, details, and paralines.

ID 200. Interior Materials and Structures. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 110 and ID major. Interior design materials including types, qualities, and uses, and calculations of quantities; basic architectural elements related to interior design.

ID 225. Space Planning. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 110. Studio experience using two-and three-dimensional techniques to increase understanding of spatial relationships; emphasis on ergonomics, anthropometrics, and proxemics.

ID 230. History of Interiors and Furniture 1. 3 Hours.

The course examines the history of western European design from antiquity through the neoclassical periods as situated within the larger content of the contemporary globe.

ID 235. Interior Design Graphics 2. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 155. Studio course in spatial graphics; experience in constructing and using perspective grids; perspective sketching and basic color rendering.

ID 240. Codes and Interior Construction. 2 Hours.

This course addresses construction issues, building codes, and life safety codes as they relate to both the commercial and residential built interior environment.

ID 260. History of Interiors and Furniture 2. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 230. Interiors, furniture, and decorative arts of Europe and America in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

ID 270. Interior Lighting Design. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 200. General concepts of light quality, quantity, distribution, and color rendering for residential and contract spaces; practical applications using lighting calculations and graphic illustrations for lighting design.

ID 293. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

ID 325. Computer-Aided Drafting and Design. 2 Hours.

PR: ID 376. Lecture/studio using computer-aided drafting and design for interior design; emphasis on CADD as a drafting tool.

ID 330. Design for Quality of Living. 3 Hours.

Introduces the concept and methodology of design thinking and the theoretical base of quality of living through design programming to enhance quality of living.

ID 355. Contract Interior Design 1. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 375 and ID 376. Studio experience in contract interior design and problems; emphasis on design of offices as work experience.

ID 375. Residential Interior Design. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 270 and ID 260 and TXCL 240. Studio experience in residential interior design problems; emphasis on design process, problem solving, functional and aesthetic considerations, critiquing and graphic presentations.

ID 376. Interior Design Graphics 3. 2 Hours.

PR: ID 155. Studio course to strengthen drafting, detailing, and presentation skills; production of typical design construction drawings.

ID 400. Interior Design Internship. 3-6 Hours.

PR: ID 375 and consent. Supervised, direct experience with a practicing designer or other closely allied professional in a career environment.

ID 420. Interior Design Professional Practices. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 375. Relationships between marketing/management functions and the design process; problem-solving approach to completion of a design installation.

ID 450. Interior Design Seminar. 1 Hour.

PR: ID 420. Professionals in interior design discuss professional organizations, ethics, entry-level positions, and business practices.

ID 455. Contract Interior Design 2. 3 Hours.

PR: ID 355. Studio experience in solving design problems related to public spaces, hotels, restaurants, department stores, specialized retail outlets, or health care facilities. facilities.

ID 490. Teaching Practicum. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Teaching practice as a tutor or assistant.

ID 491. Professional Field Experience. 1-18 Hours.

PR: Consent. (May be repeated up to a maximum of 18 hours). Prearranged experiential learning program, to be planned, supervised, and evaluated for credit by faculty and field supervisors. Involves temporary placement with public or private enterprise for professional competence development.

ID 493. Special Topics. 1-6 Hours.

PR: Consent. Investigation of topics not covered in regularly scheduled courses.

ID 494. Seminar. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent. Presentation and discussion of topics of mutual concern to students and faculty.

ID 495. Independent Study. 1-6 Hours.

Faculty supervised study of topics not available through regular course offerings.

ID 496. Senior Thesis. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Consent.

ID 498. Honors. 1-3 Hours.

PR: Students in Honors Program and consent by the honors director. Independent reading, study or research.