Six interior design courses you need to know about

These programs will teach you the tricks of the trade to make your dream a reality.
interior design coursesNic Gossage

If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to take the reins on your own home renovation or, better still, work to design dream spaces for others, perhaps it’s time to take the plunge and skill up by enrolling in an interior design course.

Adding Interior Designer to your resume may be a dream you’ve held for some time, or perhaps you have dabbled over the years but felt a formal qualification was out of reach? Not only is a career in interior design affordable but with so many courses now available online, there is more flexibility than ever to learn on your own terms.

From short courses to more comprehensive, certified programs, you will learn from experienced designers, stylists, decorators and industry experts to glean their knowledge and experience of creating beautiful interiors. Course modules, pricing and course structure varies widely and are both classroom-based and accessible online so there’s something for everyone and every circumstance.

Do your research to find out which course suits you best – whether you’re after formal qualifications such as a diploma or certificate to pursue a career in interior design, or hand-ons experience and the wherewithall to complete a tranformation of your own home. Uncover your true potential!

1. Sydney Design School

What you need to know:

  • Course: Certificate IV in Interior Decoration

  • Duration: 6 months

  • Time: Night time or two days per week 9:30am – 2:30pm, or at your own pace for 1-2 years

  • Location: On Campus in Sydney, Australia, or online – either guided or self-directed

  • Course focus: Everything you need to become an interior designer. Graduate with a portfolio of work displaying residential design and decoration techniques from brief to presentation. The course culminates in a major project with a brief from a real client.

  • Cost: $9,490 (GST free)

  • Visit: Sydney Design School

2. Interior Design Institute

What you need to know:

  • Course: Certificate of Interior Design

  • Duration: 24 weeks (up to 12 months)

  • Location: Online

  • Course focus: Twelve modules in design and decoration for professional skills with a view to building an interior design portfolio. There is also an 18 month diploma course which includes a MASTERSERIES by Darren Palmer.

  • Cost: $999.00 one-time payment or 12 installments totalling $1099

  • Visit: The Interior Design Institute

3. Billy Blue College of Design (Torens University)

What you need to know:

  • Course: Diploma of Interior Design and Decoration

  • Duration: 18 months full-time, up to 3 years part-time, or 12 months accelerated

  • Location: Online or on-campus in Sydney, Melbourne, or blended learning

  • Course focus: Generate ideas, learn technical skills (including AutoCAD software), and understand the design processes to engage with complex interior sites. Work on real briefs and gain studio experience to prepare you for a career in the interior design industry.

  • Cost: $2,180* indicative price

  • Visit: Torens University Australia

4. Three Birds Reno School

What you need to know:

  • Course: Six modules from creating a masterplan to improving the exterior of your home

  • Duration: Six weeks – every Monday, or work at your own pace

  • Location: Online

  • Course focus: Rather than an interior design qualification, this is a home renovation course to learn the skills needed to complete a renovation of your own home. It is great for homeowners and budding stylists or interior designers who want to dip their toes in the water of home design, by using their own renovation project as a jumping-off point.

  • Cost: $997 upfront or 3 monthly payments of $369

  • Visit: Three Birds Reno School

Turn your interior design dreams into reality with a certificate or diploma course that fits with your lifestyle and aspirations.

(Credit: Photographer: Nic Gossage | Story: Real Living)

5. Australian Academy of Interior Design

What you need to know:

  • Course: Advanced Certificate in Interior Design

  • Duration: Approximately 6-12 months (or at your own pace up to 36 months)

  • Location: Home study or classroom

  • Course focus: Based on ten practical assignments become an interior designer by developing the skills and techniques to create, present and deliver your own design projects, together with an understanding of the interior design industry.

  • Cost: $1195.00

  • Visit: Australian Academy of Interior Design

6. International School of Colour and Design (ISCD)

What you need to know:

  • Course: Diploma of Interior Design

  • Duration: 15 – 20 hours per week, 4 blocks of 6 months each, up to 24 months

  • Location: Online

  • Course focus: A nationally accredited diploma course to learn the skills, knowledge and creative ability to work as an Interior Designer for a firm or establish your own design business. Graduate with a portfolio and technical skills including Photoshop, inDesign, CAD and hand drafting technical skills.

  • Cost: $13,940 + Starter Kit of $300

  • Visit: International School of Colour and Design

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