Department of Art and Design Patti & Rusty Rueff School of Visual and Performing Arts

Interior Design

Interior design is based on solving problems related to the quality of people's physical environment within a structure to achieve a built interior space. These solutions are functional, enhance the quality of life and culture of the occupants, and are aesthetically appealing. Interior designers must adhere to code and regulatory requirements, and encourage the principles of environmental sustainability. The interior design process follows a systematic and coordinated methodology, including research, analysis and integration of knowledge into the creative process, whereby the needs of the client are satisfied to produce an interior space that fulfills the project goals. The professional interior designer plans and creates interior spaces that enclose and serve human needs in relation to physical, functional, social, psychological, and aesthetic elements.

Students in Purdue's interior design program develop the analytical skills and gain the experience to plan commercial, institutional, healthcare, retail, and residential interiors. This program aims to develop students as creative designers who can formulate, propose, and execute creative design solutions for the physical, social, and psychological needs of a changing society influenced by rapid changes in technology.

Purdue's interior design program is CIDA (Council for Interior Design Accreditation) accredited and gives students a sound background in understanding the design process , from research and analysis of the client's goals and requirements, to the formulation of preliminary space plans and two and three dimensional design concept studies and sketches that integrate the client's program needs and are based on knowledge of the principles of interior design and theories of human behavior.  This process is refined in the program through design presentations, and construction documents necessary to implement solutions.  Students are also formed into teams for approaching design solutions in cooperative groups.

Coursework encompasses creative exploration, professional preparation, technical information, and skills with emphases on interior construction, building systems, codes, equipment, and components as well as accessibility, environmental, and sustainability strategies.

Introductory courses begin with drawing, design, and drafting, and are followed by a sequential series of studio classes on increasingly complex projects. Students learn rapid sketching techniques, model making, computer-aided design, lighting design, presentation techniques, and construction documents necessary to implement solutions. Courses in art and architectural history, textiles, building construction, and professional practice are complemented by field trips and presentations by practicing designers. Internship and co-op opportunities prepare students to enter this challenging profession.

Graduates find employment opportunities in architectural and interior design firms as well as in other design positions focusing on lighting, kitchens and baths, facilities planning, or the furniture industry.

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