Interior design is one of five professional programs in the Department of Architecture and one of three that require national accreditation. Like most professional programs where licensure is a requirement for professional practice, being accredited means that UTSA’s interior design program meets professional standards defined by the Council of Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA), a national organization of practitioners and design educators whose mission it is to establish and evaluate design programs ensuring compliance with national professional standards. Students who graduate from accredited programs are equipped with the knowledge and skills to perform as future professionals and, thus qualified to take professional licensing exams, a requirement in most states and specifically in Texas.
The accreditation process involves a rigorous and lengthy review of a program’s curriculum, educational objectives and goals, human and physical resources, and opportunities to link students with the profession. The process requires exhibition of student work often collected over several years that shows evidence of the hundred plus learning outcomes involving subjects ranging from design aesthetics and human comfort, building technology and professional practice. The interior design program at UTSA received its initial accreditation in 1999 and has maintained accredited status continuously.