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Interior Design

Accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA), the interior design program offers both the Bachelor of Science (BS) and the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degrees.  The BA degree includes four (4) semesters of foreign language and a three-hour philosophy course.  The BS degree includes four (4) semesters of natural science and six (6) hours in mathematics.  Throughout the program, students earn 42 advanced hours (3000 to 4000-level) and graduate with 120 minimum credit hours. 

Interior design education at Sam Houston State University provides a broad experience in design, critical thinking and problem solving, computer graphics, building codes, design history, materials, sustainability, space planning, construction and overall design competencies. During the program, emphasis is placed on design that is energy and sustainability conscious. Evidence-based design is widespread in the profession, especially in healthcare design, which uses past experiences, research and practice-set precedence for future buildings and interiors. Computer knowledge is imperative with programs such as AutoCAD®, Revit® and SketchUp®. The coursework in the program provides the foundations for the needed skill set to have a productive career within the field. Students complete an internship experience at the end of the senior year which provides the opportunity for student interns to be hired into permanent employment positions.

Interior design courses are a continual building process, learning fundamentals first and concluding with a senior capstone project. Courses must be taken consecutively, through a minimum of six semesters, to remain on track in the program. Students who plan to transfer should seriously review the course equivalencies as they enroll in courses at their college to be sure the credits will transfer. Majors must maintain a 2.0 GPA in their interior design and related courses to be eligible for graduation.


A degree in interior design is a broad-reaching degree.  Graduates can practice in any of the following specialties:

  • Corporate – offices
  • Hospitality – resorts, theatres, casinos, hotels, restaurants
  • Healthcare – hospitals, clinics, long-term care facilities
  • Educational
  • Retail – boutiques, malls, stores,
  • Residential – homes, apartments, condos
  • Historic Preservation
  • Facility management- in-house designer, often supervising designers
  • Kitchen and Bath design
  • Lighting design
  • Code Specialist
  • Sales – retail, sales reps for products, specialty sales


Mission & Goals Statement

Interior Design Program, Sam Houston State University

The mission of the interior design program at Sam Houston State University is to provide an academic background preparing students to think critically, creatively, and independently, enabling them as beginning professionals in interior design to produce quality work and serve the public through protecting health, safety and welfare in a diverse marketplace.

To achieve this mission the program has the following goals:

  • To produce graduates with knowledge and skills necessary to practice as entry-level interior design professionals within a diverse marketplace.  These graduates will progressively build upon their academic knowledge with work experiences which will make them qualified to become an NCIDQ-eligible design professional.
  • To continuously assess the curriculum, ensuring content meets industry and CIDA expectations. 
  • To develop design projects and assignments relevant and current to real world situations.
  • To maintain a level of quality for all course work by requiring students to achieve a minimum grade of “C” in all required FACS, ARTS and ITEC courses, and to complete prerequisite courses in order as they progress through the curriculum.
  • To uphold and continue to build strong relationships with industry professionals in the region.

Student Achievement Information

Retention Rate

78% of student enrolled in the Spring 2013 returned to continue in the interior program in the Fall 2013 semester.

Graduation Rate and Degree Awarded

In 2013, 17 bachelor degrees were awarded to interior design graduate. Ten of the 17 degrees were Bachelor of Arts and seven were Bachelor of Science Degrees.

Job Placement Rates

In 2013, 82% of interior design graduates were employed upon graduation. 53% of the graduating group was employed by residential designers, corporate designers, architectural firms, builders, or design retail. 29% were employed in non-interior design positions such as education, business and other retail. 12% of the group applied to graduate school and one student entered missionary work.

Acceptance into Graduate Programs

In 2013, 100% of the graduating interior design students who applied to graduate schools were accepted.

Student Projects Policy The interior design program reserves the right to keep, display, and reproduce design projects and assignments submitted by students.  Graded projects and assignments are the property of the department until they are returned to students.

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