Interior Design FAQ

Commonly asked questions for current and prospective students of Interior Design

What is Interior Design at IUP?

We are one of four programs within the Human Development, Fashion, and Interior Design Department, within the College of Health and Human Services. Interior designers, as professionals, are in part responsible for the health, safety, and welfare of the public at large as we engage in the planning and design of spaces, both private and public. Interior design straddles a fine line between art, technology, and human development.

Do I have to choose between a residential or commercial design track?

No! We offer a robust program which allows students to experience both design theory and practice through upper-level residential and commercial classes.

Will I have to learn hand drafting, or will I be able to use my computer for drafting?

Both. Because we feel hand drafting is a key foundation in understanding and applying interior design theory, students first learn this technique before learning computer-aided design (CAD). Students usually complete a hand drafting course during their freshman year, and a CAD course (utilizing the current version of AutoCAD) during fall of their sophomore year.

Do I need to have my own laptop?

No. However, a laptop or updated PC is strongly recommended for completing projects outside of the classroom. Students have access to a university-maintained lab consisting of 25 laptops, but these are only available with faculty supervision. For maximum flexibility and 24/7 access to working on your computer-related projects, you should consider your own PC or laptop.

I already have my own laptop. What software will I need?

IUP maintains a license for AutoCAD, and it is installed on all of the department's laptops. 20-20 Design is a kitchen and bath program that you will need, typically during your third year. It is available at a reduced cost through the university.

What are the technology requirements?

I know I'll have to go to class and learn. Does the Interior Design program offer anything beyond classroom experience?

Yes. We have a very active student chapter of the American Society of Interior Designers. You will meet professionals and have them review your portfolio and give you real advice based upon trends in the field. You will have opportunities to assist in community service. We visit design trade shows, historic sites, and everything in between. In 2008, for example, trips were arranged to visit attend the Kitchen/Bath Industry Show in Chicago and NeoCon in Baltimore.