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The Department of Interior Architecture and Design, housed in the College of Fine Arts, offers two CIDA-accredited bachelor’s degrees, a one-year master of science (M.S.) degree with two separate tracks and a 2-year Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree.  A fast-track option for qualified bachelor’s degree students can also provide a combined bachelor’s and master of science (M.S) degree in 5 years. Students engage with design theory, history, technical skills, and participate in studio classes addressing residential and commercial spaces including health care, retail, office environments, hospitality, furniture design and specialized projects for children, seniors, and others in need of supportive spaces.  The curriculum prepares students to work in interior design firms, as interior designers in architectural firms, or in many other design-related settings.

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The Program

The Department offers both Bachelor’s and Master’s programs in interior design.  The Undergraduate Program has been fully accredited since 1975 by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Both the Undergraduate and Graduate Programs are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). Graduates are eligible to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Exam (NCIDQ), the gateway to professionalism and required for practice in many states and provinces.

Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts degrees are offered at the undergraduate level.  The Graduate Program includes the Master of Science Advanced Professional Project TrackMaster of Science Advanced Professional Research Track, and Master of Fine Arts degrees are available for candidates already holding a Bachelor’s degree in interior design or other related and approved design discipline. Our MFA program is especially responsive to those graduate students wishing to enter the field of design education in the future.

Department Mission

The Department’s mission is to provide students the knowledge necessary to pursue careers as interior designers who create functional, sustainable and beautiful environments that positively impact human health, safety and well-being. To this end, the Department imparts the values of human-centered and equitable design, evidence-based design processes and creative and critical thinking so that students create well-designed spaces where people live, work, and thrive.

Educational Philosophy

Design is a pivotal driver of change, advancement, and equality in society, and it is essential to the physical and psychological well-being of the human experience. The Department of Interior Architecture and Design provides a strong foundation for the collaborative practice of interior design. Throughout the interactive studio culture, students are nurtured as independent and creative learners who integrate fundamental skills, critical thinking, and evidence-based research into the design process. Employing constructivist pedagogies and experiential learning techniques, students move beyond passive learning to become active producers of knowledge in the field.

Department Values

As designers, we believe that well-designed spaces have the potential to positively impact human well-being.  As faculty, we strive to impart the following human-centered values to our students:

  • Creative, beautiful and meaningful spaces enhance our life experiences.
  • Well-designed spaces are an important part of our culture and history.
  • Good design should be available to all and can serve as an agent for social change.
  • Spaces have the ability to contribute to our sense of place and community.
  • Spaces should be functional and meet the needs of building occupants.
  • Sustainable design is essential to human health and well-being.
  • Research and evidence-based design are an essential part of design decision making.
  • Ethical behavior and responsible business practices are essential.

Career Path

The FSU Interior Design program resides in the Department of Interior Architecture & Design.  The department name accurately describes the work students engage in while in school and out in the workforce.  Students are heavily involved in shaping interior space.  The undergraduate program leading to the bachelor’s degree (either BS or BA) is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA),, 206 Grandville Avenue, Suite 350, Grand Rapids MI, 49503.  The CIDA-accredited program prepares students for entry-level interior design practice, for advanced study, and to apply for membership in professional interior design organizations.  The bachelor’s degree granted by Florida State University meets the educational requirements for eligibility to take the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Examination (NCIDQ Exam).  For more information about NCIDQ eligibility visit: It is important to note that students remaining in the state of Florida will be eligible (upon passage of the NCIDQ) to be licensed as interior designers.  Because our program name is interior design, FSU diplomas read “interior design.”  Please contact the department for any clarification.

Department Facilities

The Department is housed in the William Johnston Building, on Landis Green in the heart of the FSU campus (with our main department office in 1038 WJB). Aside from the department and faculty offices, our facilities consist of 6 design studios, a CAD lab, print center, resource room, graduate lab, seminar and lecture spaces, a gallery, a design library and congregation spaces for our students. The building achieved a Gold LEED certification.  The FSU Innovation Hub is directly across the green.

Studio D: Design and Fabrication Labs

Established in the summer of 2013, the Studio D: Design and Fabrication Labs are prototyping and testing workspaces in the Department of Interior Architecture and Design. Studio D labs are focused on the design, fabrication, and testing of small and full-scale prototypes of furniture and interior design objects that support the three areas of curriculum development and instruction, research and critical analysis, and product development and material testing.

The Carnaghi Arts Building houses the department’s traditional woodshop tools in Studio D, digital fabrication equipment in Studio 3D, and also undergraduate and graduate studio space in the MOTL (Materials and Objects Testing Lab) and Fundamentals classrooms.

Retention and Placement Statistics

State of the Industry

The Council for Interior Design Accreditation’s Summary Report 2019 summarizes societal trends that impact the interior design profession and interior design education, available here.


How accreditation impacts a student.