The BFA in Interior Design at Parsons has consistently ranked as a leading program for interior design education. Its research-intensive approach to place making prepares students for a competitive and changing marketplace.
In 1906, Frank Alvah Parsons established the first academic interior design program in the United States. Parsons and the program's other early leaders, especially William Odom, Van Day Truex, Jean-Michel Frank, understood interior design as both a critical design discipline and a potent social and economic force. More than a century later, the very concept of what constitutes an interior—and the discipline that engages with those concepts—are being explored and debated.
The Interior Design learning experience is intimate and thought-provoking. Students work in small groups with faculty to develop design concepts for residences, institutions, commercial spaces, and special building types. Each interior is treated as a unique confluence of forces that students navigate according to a value system that stresses environmental stewardship and cultural sensitivity.
After completing their first-year coursework, Interior Design students take a multiple-year series of art and design history and theory courses, as well as a six-semester studio sequence that introduces interior and architecture issues of increasing difficulty and detail. Students learn to conceptualize and develop interior designs through to detailed resolution, using representational means ranging from physical models to collage and digital renderings.
Senior students can apply to participate in The Design Workshop, where students design, develop, and construct a full-scale project for a nonprofit client. The workshop encapsulates the highest aspirations of the Interior Design program's socially engaged curriculum and its discipline-crossing culture.
The BFA Interior Design program is accredited by the National Association of
Schools of Art and Design. This program fulfills the education requirement that qualifies graduates to sit for the National Council of Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) professional licensing exam.