NYIAD Complete Course in Interior Design Review

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As many of you know, for my 30th birthday my parents gave me the gift of enrollment in the New York Institute of Art and Design’s Complete Course in Interior Design. I planned on writing a review when I finished it, but that won’t be for a while and a few readers have been asking about it, so I decided to share a bit about it now.

I was pretty hesitant to take the course because I couldn’t really find any reviews of it and I wasn’t sure if it was going to be good, but at this point I feel comfortable saying it’s a great course so far, I’m learning a lot, and I definitely recommend it. I think it’s great for anyone who’s interested in design or becoming a designer but has a full-time job and can’t go back to school for a Bachelors in Interior Design, or anyone who just wants to do it online due to location and the convenience factor. Second, quick point I’ll make is that Lauren Liess, who is now a hugely successful and talented designer and author, took the course and as far as I know that’s her only formal training. If that’s not an endorsement I don’t know what is! I have no idea why the school doesn’t advertise that fact. Anyway, now I’ll get into more details for those that are interested! 

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What It Is 

The New York Institute of Art and Design is an online design school based in New York City, offering online courses in various creative subjects including interior design, photography, jewelry design, and others. They are accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission and licensed by the New York State Education Department.

The NYIAD Complete Course in Interior Design is a comprehensive course covering all the basics of interior design. You have around 18 months to complete it (of course if you need extensions you can get them), and it’s all online. It is not for any sort of college credit. At the end you are eligible for the Designer Society of America’s Residential Interior Design Qualification Certification. This is not the same as being a Certified Interior Designer, which is a qualification you earn by doing a Bachelors Degree in Interior Design. There’s a lot of debate out there over whether or not a formal Bachelor’s degree is necessary in order to be a successful interior designer, and some of the best designers out there (in my opinion) like Nate Berkus, Erin Gates and the aforementioned Lauren Liess don’t have Bachelor’s degrees in interior design…but anyway, that’s a topic for another day!


The entire program cost a little over $1200. For comparison’s sake, the New York School of Interior Design costs $915 PER CREDIT. Their Basic Interior Design program is 24 credits – 24 times 915 = a little under $22,000. Yikes.

Basic Structure:

There are 6 “Units” in the course. Each unit has several “topics” within. At the end of each Unit, after you’ve gone through all of the topics, you do a project. You mail the project in to the school, and they mail it back to you with a grade and audio feedback. The audio feedback is a recording of your teacher, who has your work in front of you, and she talks to you as she goes over it, offering critiques and insight on how you did. That part is pretty cool, I have to say – it makes it feel totally personalized and it’s great to know an actual person is sitting down with your project.

One thing I like is how they mix up the course content. For example, you learn about furniture styles in the course, and you learn about how to run a design business (among tons of other things), but instead of going through all of the furniture styles in a row, then doing all of the business stuff, they do Early American Farmhouse furniture in one unit, then switch to a business topic, then they do another furniture style and another business topic in the next unit, and so on and so forth – so basically you get a break from furniture styles, and a break from business stuff, instead of all of each topic being chunked together. I like that a lot, as it just prevents all of the information from getting muddled together. It keeps it interesting – just when you’re maybe getting a little tired of one topic, they switch to another aspect of design.

Another thing that keeps it from getting monotonous is how they mix up the format. As you’re going through each Unit and each topic, the main way it’s structured is written content with pictures and diagrams. But there are also videos and audio recordings mixed in throughout, which is a great break from just reading through the topics. It also feels a little more personal, to hear designers talking about the topics and see them doing things like drafting or visiting a space or showroom. Not all of the videos are amazing, but most I’ve really enjoyed so far.

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In addition to the online material, the school sends you a bunch of physical materials that are necessary for completing your projects. First they send the graph paper and measuring tape you need for room sketches and floorplans, and the watercolors you use to work on color basics. Next they sent me a huge package that included all of the materials for the remainder of the course, including a stack of reference books, colored pencils, a T-square and drafting board, and all of the other drafting materials (erasing shield, special pencils, eraser, triangles, drafting brush, scale ruler, door template, etc).

Unit 1 Overview

In Unit 1, they teach you how to start from scratch: meeting a client, sitting down with them, doing a “Room Condition Checklist” (writing down details of the room), and a “Lifestyle Questionnaire,” (to help you understand how the client lives and uses their space). They teach you about the different ways designers charge, and talk about having the conversation about price with clients. Then they teach you how to measure a room and do a room sketch, not to scale -which by the way, is harder than it sounds! You also learn about real estate staging, an interesting aspect of design that I hadn’t thought about before, and color basics. They go over some aspects of picking furniture, such as, is it in harmony with the rest of the room? Is it suitable in terms of budget and function? There’s also some talk about determining the mood of the room – is it modern? Is it traditional…and how choosing furniture has to fit in with that.

For the Unit 1 project you need to make a room sketch of a real living room, which includes all of the measurements of walls, windows, doors, and fireplaces, along with all of the symbols for outlets and light switches and such. You also hand in a Lifestyle Questionnaire for the living room client, a Room Condition Checklist for the living room, and a couple of color exercises where you paint a color wheel and such. You have the option of handing in elevations for the living room, but they aren’t required. The good thing is that they talk you through it all step-by-step, so everything is very clear.

Unit 2 Overview

In Unit 2, you learn how to take a room sketch (from Unit 1) and make a to-scale floorplan from it. Which by the way, is WAY harder than it sounds! Well, for me anyway. You learn how to use all of the drafting materials to do the to-scale floorplan. You also learn about how to make a letter of agreement for working with a client (and how to present it to them), and they delve into the first furniture style being covered: Early American Farmhouse (ladderback chairs, trestle tables, etc). They also talk a bit about antiques and reproductions, and proportion and scale for furniture.

For the Unit 2 project, you build upon your Unit 1 living room by taking that room sketch you did and creating a to-scale floorplan of that living room. You also do a bedroom. So you do a room sketch of a bedroom, along with a Room Condition Checklist for it, and the to-scale floorplan for that. Then you also hand in some more color exercises that have to do with value and hue (really interesting, actually), and you hand in some sort of quiz about Early American Farmhouse furniture (I haven’t gotten to that yet). So as you can see, each Unit builds upon the last.

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Things to Note:
When I first started the program I was slightly perturbed to learn that it doesn’t cover any computer programs like Autocad, Sketchup, or InDesign, which as far as I know are standard for designers today. However, it didn’t take me long to understand that to learn those would require courses in and of themselves (and interestingly, NYIAD recently started offering a separate Autocad course). Those programs are beyond the scope of the course, and what they’re really teaching you here are the basics – drawing and drafting a room from scratch, by hand. I think you need to understand those fundamentals in order to function and later move on to utilizing programs like Autocad.

A great aspect of the course is that it deals with both design basics and practical concerns, such as how to charge, how to write a letter of agreement, and how to talk to clients. It’s very real-life, job-oriented, which makes it feel immediately useful, versus just being theoretical.

Another good aspect: Your advisor is just an email away and I found that they answered questions I sent via email very quickly. I also received the feedback for my Unit 1 Project promptly.

One thing I wish is that they didn’t actually grade you. Since the course isn’t for credit, the grade doesn’t matter, and I find it more discouraging than anything else. I like getting the feedback and the constructive criticism but I would prefer not to be graded…that’s just my opinion!

My Feelings on It 

So far the biggest thing I’ve realized from this course is how much I don’t know about design, and how much I have to learn! Which is really exciting for me. However, I do vacillate between feelings of enjoyment and frustration while going through this. I love what I’m learning, but I am struggling with feelings of frustration when it comes to the drafting. It’s just really not in my wheelhouse – I have a lifelong hatred of math, and I’m just not good with measurements and numbers. I find the measuring to be a bit boring and the drafting makes me stressed because every line and measurement has to be so precise. I’m trying not to let it get to me though…and not to let it make me feel like this is something I shouldn’t be pursuing. I don’t think anyone gets into design because they love math and measuring, right? I’m looking forward to working on the actual decorating part.

But, as much as I don’t like the drafting, I really appreciate that the course is making me learn the fundamentals. This is the groundwork. You can’t decorate if you don’t have measurements, and you can’t communicate with contractors and other professionals in your field if you don’t understand floor plans and elevations. I think I wouldn’t mind the drafting as much if I was better at it, but practice makes perfect so I just have to keep pushing.

The course is totally self-guided, no deadlines or anything, so it’s totally on me to stay motivated and put the time in. That can be a bit of a challenge as I’m usually really tired after work, but since the course is overall enjoyable (aside from the dang drafting!), it’s not too hard to set aside a few hours on weekends to devote to it.  At times, it can feel hard sacrificing time to something when I’m not sure if it’s going to actually result in any positive outcome. But I try to remind myself, there is no guaranteed outcome for this…and that’s okay! It’s more about learning so much valuable information, and less about whatever’s going to happen at the end. Whoever knows what’s going to happen with anything? Trite though it may be, in this situation, it’s true: it’s more about the journey than the destination. No knowledge is ever wasted, and the more I know about design, the better!

Any questions, leave ’em in the comments below and I’ll be happy to answer!

EDITOR’S NOTE 4/14/2017:
I’ve had a lot of people e-mailing me to see if I’m still in the course and how it’s going, so I wanted to answer that here – I’m still in it, and it’s still going great! I’m still learning a lot, which is exactly what my goal was when starting the course. My opinion hasn’t changed since writing this post – I would recommend the course and am hoping to write a follow-up on Unit 3 soon, so stay tuned for that :). 

Leave a Comment

  1. Brigid wrote:

    Thanks so much for posting this, Jackie! I was one of the ones asking about it so I appreciate the in-depth review. I made a career switch about 2 years ago and work for an interior designer. It’s been difficult to find the right classes/programs that aren’t full-time and super intensive.

    If there are any referral codes that would help you (or me!) feel free to pass them along 🙂 I’m actually thinking of signing up for either the Interior Design or AutoCAD course soon.

    Published 7.13.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome! So great that you work for a designer – you’re probably already familiar with many of the topics taught in the program. And thanks for asking about referral codes, that’s so nice of you. I did see on the site that if you sign up for two courses at once, you get 25% off both so that’s something to keep in mind!

      Published 7.13.16 · Reply
  2. heather wrote:

    I also asked about this–love this post and all the detail. I need to get my act together and sign up! (I also bought Habitat–SO good!

    Published 7.13.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      So glad you liked the post. Habitat is the best!

      Published 7.14.16 · Reply
  3. April wrote:

    Hi Jackie,

    I signed on to your blog today specifically to re-read your initial post about the course. So, this was perfect timing!

    I’m currently serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Kosovo, and I’m looking for projects to work on during the long, cold, mountain winters. $1,200 is more money than I can really spend at the moment, but I will definitely keep this is mind for the future!

    Published 7.14.16 · Reply
    • Dawn wrote:

      The $1200 can be broken up into affordable monthly payments. I pay $49/month.

      Published 11.15.16 · Reply
  4. Oh, sounds fun (and challenging)!
    I love design of all sorts, but I really don’t know how good I am at interior design.
    One of my favorite books for design inspiration is Erin Swift’s “French Accents”. I love flipping through it =)
    Have fun with your course!
    Megan @ http://www.blingelegance.wordpress.com

    Published 7.14.16 · Reply
  5. Maria Fernanda wrote:


    thanks so much for sharing your experience so far with us. I am 100% with you on the drafting + math; it makes me question whether I should go into ID, as well. Hang in there! 🙂

    I hope you enjoy the course and can learn many new things.

    great job with the pictures, the post, and your floorplan.

    Published 7.14.16 · Reply
  6. Lindsay Taylor wrote:

    Is the RIDQC certification only available when you register for $495. Or is this offered upon completion as well? And from what you have learned, is this necessary? Thank you!

    Published 8.19.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      I’m pretty sure you have to pay $495 to take the test and become RIDQC certified – taking the NYIAD course qualifies you to register, but the price is separate (unfortunately). In my opinion it is 100% not NECESSARY, per-se, but I think it is always great to have a credential and some sort of certification to back up your skills. So basically not needed, but certainly doesn’t hurt!

      Published 8.21.16 · Reply
  7. jp wrote:


    Im an Architect and im thinking of enrolling for an online ID course, NYIAD is one of my options. I previously enrolled in The Institute of Interior Design San Francisco but I find it too basic and boring. So I want to switch to NYIAD.

    Do you have the prospectus of the whole course? Can you send me the copy? Just an outline of the what I can learn.

    How long was the shipping before you got your learning materials? Im only in US until Sept 19, so Im not sure if they will be able to send it to me in time.

    I hope you respond. Thanks.


    Published 9.7.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi JP, happy to help! Just shoot me an email: jclair24 [at] gmail dot com. Thanks!

      Published 9.8.16 · Reply
    • Mlle Fobi wrote:

      Hi JP
      I am curious to hear your thoughts on the learning materials, that is if you got a chance to review it?I am an architect as well and I am considering taking this course but have the same concerns you had about it being potentially too basic or boring. Thanks

      Published 7.13.17 · Reply
  8. Kim wrote:

    HI,I happened upon this blog and so happy I did. I’m very very interested in interior decorating. The math and drafting info is a little scary but I won’t let it deter me. I’m looking for a career change and I really feel this is it!! Thank you for the very detailed write up and best of luck to you?

    Published 9.20.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re very welcome! Good luck to you with your career switch and I will keep updating about my experience with the course!

      Published 9.20.16 · Reply
    • Kim wrote:

      Hi, did you purchase the hard copies of the material? I am wondering if it’s necessary or is it something I can just print myself.

      Published 9.23.16 · Reply
      • York Avenue wrote:

        From what I can remember, I did not purchase the hard copies. I don’t think it’s necessary, and they do send you several books as part of your course materials anyway.

        Published 9.24.16 · Reply
  9. Leslie Manning wrote:

    I graduated from NYIAD in June of 2015. I thought the school and the design program were excellent. I was a very dedicated student and even though I work full-time I completed the course in 11 month to the day. I got an A+ on my final project and I won a design excellence award from NYIAD. I was very proud of myself! NYIAD also filmed my final project and added it to the revised curriculum.

    I’ve done well since graduation. I am actually working on a multi million dollar senior living project. My education has really paid off!

    Published 9.27.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      That’s wonderful Leslie, thanks for telling us! Great to hear a success story come from taking the course.

      Published 9.29.16 · Reply
    • Tina wrote:

      Congratulations on your success! To land your deal; did you have other educational credentials to back you up or was it strictly based on you interior ed at NYIAD?

      Published 1.6.17 · Reply
    • Hello, am very interested. .am enrolled in the program newly started,looks fun,using my tablet and libraries to study, going thr limited resources in a year,last year ! Designing it’s in my blood decorating, vrafts,design,cooking.,my mom florist,cake making and decorative cakes.,my brother and nephew art painter! wondering is you could send me names of books so I can purchase used.

      Published 1.15.17 · Reply
  10. Amber Irene Beatryce Maag wrote:

    This helps! I always have been super creative. Drawing, cooking, design, so on. I’m currently full time and I spent a lot of money at art schools and a cooking school getting certificates in things I’m not using…the price doesn’t sound bad at all and if it’ll give me knowledge I don’t know yet, that sounds super helpful!
    Hopefully good things come to both of us for signing up for this! 🙂

    Published 9.29.16 · Reply
  11. Veronica Leach wrote:

    Thank you so much Jackie for the wonderful informative information. I have always had a love for design and I always wanted to go to school for this field but I had babies young and old..LOL Now that my youngest is 16 I can move forward with my career. I have worked as a teachers aide for the last 20 years so I could be home when my kids were home….Now it’s ME time….

    Published 10.30.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      So glad to hear that Veronica! Best of luck to you with your new adventure 🙂

      Published 10.30.16 · Reply
  12. Iqra wrote:

    Hi. Thanks for a nice detailed review. I wanna ask that if we r from some other country even then they will send us the material? Or is it only for new yorkers?

    Published 11.1.16 · Reply
  13. Jane wrote:

    Thank you so much for your detailed info on the school! Greatly appreciated!

    Published 11.3.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re very welcome!

      Published 11.3.16 · Reply
      • Jesseca wrote:

        I would like to know if there was any kind of delays in the program are assignments are materially not getting anywhere on time cuz I have plan on wanting to go to this to go but I live overseas so I’m kind of scared that I will not pass because things get delayed I don’t get there on time

        Published 6.13.17 · Reply
      • Jesseca wrote:

        I would like to know if there was any kind of delays in the program are assignments are materially not getting anywhere on time cuz I have plan on wanting to go to this to go but I live overseas so I’m kind of scared that I will not pass because things get delayed I don’t get there on time please write me on my email address that would be darrowjf@yahoo.com

        Published 6.13.17 · Reply
  14. Marina wrote:

    Hey Jackie! How far through the course are you? Are you done already? Just want to check if your feelings have changed by now about it… I applied yesterday, seeking a carreer change and want to know if I’m doing the right move! Thanks!

    Published 11.3.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi Marina! I’m not done, still working on it! Feeling the same so far but sadly haven’t had much time to work on it. When I progress further I’ll be sure to post an update! xoxo

      Published 11.3.16 · Reply
  15. Sarah wrote:

    What is the percentage of people getting a job after they graduate from this program?

    Published 11.3.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      I’m not sure but if you email the school they can probably tell you!

      Published 11.3.16 · Reply
  16. RITU SHARMA wrote:


    Published 11.6.16 · Reply
  17. Briana Strickland wrote:

    Thank you so much for this review! I do have a question – how long does it take to finish? I know they give you 18 months, but do you foresee it taking that long?

    Published 11.16.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome! 18 months sounds about right to me. The workload wasn’t too heavy in the first two units, but it really all depends on how much time you have available to dedicate to it.

      Published 11.17.16 · Reply
  18. Deb wrote:

    Thank you for taking the time to write such a helpful review! I’ve been considering taking this course for a few years. I’m not looking to become a professional, but to improve my game significantly on my house and an apartment we have overseas. And the process of learning is always fun, and who knows, maybe the course would inspire me to think bigger about future possibilities. It’s easy to get skeptical about online courses, but this sounds very legit, useful and worth the money. All the best to you as you go through the course!

    Published 12.18.16 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks Deb! Good luck with it 🙂

      Published 1.3.17 · Reply
  19. melissa wrote:

    HI! I am torn between doing this course or one at Rhodec. Does anyone know anything about Rhodec?

    Published 1.2.17 · Reply
  20. Anda wrote:


    I am interested in this online interior design course. I want to mention that I am not from United States. I am living in Europe ( Romania more precisely). I want to know if it possible for me to take part of this course and if they can send me all the materials considering I am not from United States.
    Thank you.


    Published 1.5.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      I would email the school and ask! The contact info is on their website.

      Published 1.6.17 · Reply
      • Livia wrote:

        Im from Hungary. I study in the US, but would like to apply to this course this summer (from home). I called them and asked if it is possible. They said yes, but extra at least 100$ the shipping.

        Published 1.19.17 · Reply
  21. Tina wrote:

    Yes, Jackie. Thank you so much for your time; very informative, esp since their aren’t many reviews to reference. I’m strong considering. I already do a few odds and ends for clients; but I want to expand my knowledge as interior designing is my passion by far and start my personal small business.

    May I ask; how have your put your credentials to work since you’ve finished the course?

    Thanks again of your time.

    Published 1.6.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      I’m still working on the course!

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
  22. I need text book names,really can’t afford books,only used!! Please help its the interior design program. Mylifeinjersey at g mail. Please that would be a blessing..

    Published 1.15.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi Natasha – you can do the course without any books. It’s all online.

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
  23. Ridhima wrote:

    Thank you so much for this detailed review. I have been wanting to study Interior Design but have 2 young kids at home with me, so I thought doing it online is quite possible. I am gonna go ahead with this decision and start a new journey.

    Thanks for your time.
    Truly appreciated.

    Published 1.24.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome Ridhima. Best of luck to you on the course!

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
  24. Christina Calle wrote:

    Congrats on your course!! I have a silly question… Do you have to be really good at drawing for this career?

    Published 2.4.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi Christina! It’s not a requirement at all, no. I’m terrible at drawing. Of course I’m sure it wouldn’t be hurt, but a lot is done on computers nowadays.

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
      • Shirley wrote:

        I’m glad you asked that Christina! Same!! Good to hear. Thank you for you’re detailed experience Jackie… you have no idea how much this forum helped!

        Published 8.28.17 · Reply
        • York Avenue wrote:

          So happy to hear that, Shirley!

          Published 8.28.17 · Reply
  25. Mari wrote:

    Thank you for this!

    Published 2.15.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re very welcome!

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
  26. Katie wrote:

    Thanks so much for posting this; thinking about registering and it is really great to hear someone’s experience with it.

    Published 2.16.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome!

      Published 2.18.17 · Reply
  27. Tiago wrote:

    Thank you so much for this Review… I am an Architect with more them 15 years of experience in Trade Show business, and I hate when people ask me to make a project of a Interior Design… “That’s not my kind of job, sorry…” is always my answer. So I was looking for a Interior Design specialization and fond NYIAD… Your Review is by far the best one I’ve found, thanks for that. I don’t think drafting will be a problem for me, and I REALLY need to learn more about different styles and how to put things together with harmony. Lets say that I’ve been working so far with my “instinct”, and now is time for real learning.
    Thank you, and best of luck.!
    Tiago Bezerra.

    Published 2.21.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Sounds like you will love it – I wish I had your skill with drafting! A big focus of the course is “harmony” in design, and learning about different styles. Good luck to you!

      Published 3.9.17 · Reply
  28. Eva M. Knox wrote:

    Thank you so much for this review! This seems like the best online program but your review gave me the info I wanted to feel confident about it!

    Published 3.5.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome Eva!

      Published 3.9.17 · Reply
  29. Erin wrote:

    Finding you blog & review on this program was SO helpful! I attended 3 years of college pursuing a bachelors in interior design at an accredited school, and decided at that time in my life other things were more important (ugh) and have regretted not finishing ever since. Unfortunately I do not have the money to finish, but this program sounds perfect for wanting to be more on the decorating side anyways! I have taken many drafting and autocad classes and it’s not really my thing either – I more want to know how to meet with clients and what to charge, etc. Is this a large part of the course do you think? I still want to call myself a “C.I.D” and wondering if I should just do their program to be able to call myself that, or pay more to have that certification but still have the knowledge from NYIAD. Yikes thats confusing. haha! Thanks 🙂

    Published 3.8.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      How to work with clients and what to charge is a HUGE part of the course. They’re highly focused on the practical and business side. I don’t think you can call yourself a CID unless you graduate with the Bachelors in Interior Design? But I could be wrong on that. Either way you’ve already done so much of the education, which is amazing, and this program could probably be a good next step! However, I’m thinking some of it might be repetitive from your earlier education? Might be a good review though – let me know what you decide! xo

      Published 3.9.17 · Reply
      • Sandra wrote:


        This is where you get your CID. They also offer their own course, but it didn’t have a great reviews so I myself went with NYIAD.
        Hope this helps.

        Published 5.11.17 · Reply
  30. Karen wrote:

    Thank you very much about your comments on course. I’ve been very interested and even checked out local tech college offering electrician course. Always felt interior design combined with electrician knowledge would be great. They cancelled that course just recently. There is nothing locally with interior design and even gave thought to architecture class instead. I really feel with my schedule, though, that this course is best fitted to me.

    Published 3.21.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks Karen. Hope the course worked out for you (or another course). Definitely helpful to have the electrician background, I would think!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  31. Piera G wrote:

    Omg thank you so much for this! I am changing careers and want to go into interior design. I’m in southwest Florida and the only school near me is 40 minutes away and is charging me 35k for only an associates! This would work much better than a student loan on my head for the next 10 years. And I’m so glad that you were very transparent on your thoughts. Thank you!

    Published 4.18.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re so welcome! Ugh programs are SO dang expensive! This is a much more affordable option, hope it works for you! xoxo

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  32. April A. wrote:

    Thank you so much for making this review. I have been contemplating, for the longest time, if I should push through with this course. Your review is so detailed and was very helpful. I have decided to finally do it next month. You provided me with answers to questions I haven’t even thought of asking (does that make sense?)
    I currently live in Turks & Caicos Islands (somewhere in the Caribbean) and one of my concerns was where to buy the materials for the course. This is a very small island country where most, if not all, of the stuff on island are imported. Thank you so much for providing so much information about the course. I have decided to enroll this coming May 2017. God bless you! I wish you all the best in you endeavors.

    Published 4.21.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re very welcome. I hope the course is going well for you April!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  33. Stevie Holgate wrote:


    I have been on the hunt for a long time now for a flexible online program in Interior Design, the idea of a 4 year program where I would potentially have to take BS classes like english 101 and history 101 (again) and pay out the wahzoo, really turns me off. I have come across this program a few times but often wonder how accredited it is. I don’t see that is accredited by CID, which in some states means that you can’t take the test to become a licensed Interior Designer. Which has been my only reason for not jumping on the gun and doing the program (everything about it sounds great but I struggle with the fact that companies may not take it seriously when I am looking for a job after the course) My main question is, what do you plan to do with the knowledge you learn once you finish the program, and how likely do you think you are to get a job in Interior design without a 4 yr. program degree (if you dont already have one)? I hope all this makes sense. I have been to college before but never finished due to different circumstances and I just hate to think I will be waisting my time and money on classes that don’t actually have anything to do with design. Thank you! This article made me want to do the program more then ever, but I still get nervous to pull the trigger!

    Published 5.5.17 · Reply
  34. Olivia Smith wrote:


    Loved your review! I’m looking into taking the NYIAD Interior Design course in my spare time, as I already have a full time career. Between nights and weekends, how long do you anticipate this will take me?

    Separately, do you think the next step after completing this program and becoming RIDQC certified will be taking an AutoCad/other technical class and THEN you’ll be qualified to work in design? I’d love to know the generally accepted timeline for this type of career.

    Thank you!

    Published 5.7.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi Olivia! The fact is, being “qualified” to work in design is subjective. It depends what you want to do in the industry – some of the most successful designers I know have no formal design education. Personally, I am going to take an Autocad course because I think it will be helpful for me.

      As far as how long it will take you to do the course, it honestly just depends on how much time you want to put into it. If you want to really devote hours to it each week, I don’t think it will take very long. Good luck!

      Published 5.7.17 · Reply
  35. Sandra wrote:

    Thank you for your review! I was so hard to find anything on this course.
    I started in December and had a slight set back, but just finished Unit3.
    I agree with you on drafting and math(hate!!!) 🙂 I’m also not crazy about color excercises, lol.
    Everything else is great! Very helpful.
    I am self thought Interior Decorator, already working for myself and having fun! I wanted this course to help me with my business.
    Good luck everyone!

    Published 5.11.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      I had some setbacks as well but kept going! I’m glad the program is going well for you Sandra!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  36. Danielly wrote:

    Hi Jackie! Thanks for sharing! I heard about NYIAD was looking for reviews and found yours! 🙂 How is it going so far? Still loving it? X

    Published 5.21.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Still going well! xo

      Published 6.6.17 · Reply
  37. Marianna wrote:

    Hi, Jackie! Thanks for your review! It really helped me to make my decision about doing the course. Are you planning to do the Auto CAD course later? Do you miss it today?

    Published 6.1.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome! I’m definitely still planning to do Autocad as soon as I finish this course.

      Published 6.6.17 · Reply
  38. Christina wrote:

    I am SO THANKFUL that I stumbled on your review!! I was also questioning the fact that there were not that many reviews on NYIAD even though the ones out there were mostly positive. I’m currently an adult back in school and working full time as well…nothing at our school is offered online aside from the basic classed like English etc. This would make life so much easier to be able to learn from home with my current schedule! I have a few questions for you….are the supplies and books extra/are they yours to keep or do you send them back? Is the tuition a one time deal or are there hidden fees? It just seems to good to be true price wise whether you pay in full or the monthly payment plan! So much more affordable that “traditional” schooling.

    Published 6.6.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      So glad it was helpful! The supplies are yours to keep, and the tuition is actually a one-time deal, no hidden fees that I’ve encountered. If you take longer than 18 months to finish, you get a complimentary 6 extra months, but after that they would charge more. Definitely more affordable than regular school!

      Published 6.6.17 · Reply
  39. Heather wrote:

    Is this the right course for wanting to go into interior decorating instead of interior design? Also…what is Auto CAD?

    Published 6.16.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Auto CAD is a drafting program on the computer, and I think this is a good course for either decorating or designing…although I would say it’s more a broad overview of both, rather than a detailed exploration of either one particularly.

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  40. Ana Anastasio wrote:

    Great review. My name is Ana , and I ‘m thinking on taking this course. Do you have to pass the final protect for the unit in order to open up classes for the next unit?there is any interaction between students at all.?

    Published 6.25.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Hi Ana. You don’t have to wait on the units – they’re all available from the outset so you can go in any order you want. There is a forum for students to interact within the course.

      Published 6.25.17 · Reply
  41. Alyssa wrote:

    This post made me feel so much better about this course. I have been researching online accredited schools because I work full time and wouldn’t make it living in New York if I didn’t.

    It’s easy for online programs to get lost in the ads of others that are not accredited. I did my research but was still skeptical and then I found your blog.

    I wanted to be 100% sure that this was the right education to eventually begin an interior design career… so thank you for your honesty about it!

    I think I may just enroll!

    x Alyssa

    Published 7.12.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks Alyssa! So glad it was helpful. I agree, online programs with so many ads can seem sketchy and overwhelming, and the NYIAD does put out a lot of ads which is sort of tacky, but once you get past that it is a great program I think. Good luck to you!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  42. Kristel Camacho wrote:

    Thank you so much for this review!! It’s exactly what I needed to know!! I hope everything is going well with you !!

    Published 7.15.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks Kristel!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  43. Kaylee wrote:

    Thank you for taking the time to write this review. It has been incredibly helpful to read through and has offered me encouragement to pursue the course. I have wanted to take it for a while but couldn’t really find anything online about it that wasn’t published by the school, so it’s so nice to learn from someone who’s in the class. I’m hoping that with my background in furniture and my obsession to be and interior designer this will be a great step in the right direction.

    Published 7.16.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re welcome Kaylee. I encountered the same difficulty in finding reviews so I’m happy to get one out there!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  44. Maria Clara Toro wrote:

    Thank You so much for your feedback. I am an architect in my country and I was looking for interior design here. I want to know if I sign up, can I start classes anytime? Or they have specifics dates? I’m talking about online classes.

    Published 7.27.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:


      Published 7.27.17 · Reply
  45. OMG this is awesome!

    Don’t worry, drafting is the WORST. I hated it. I think most people I know hated it. So that’s normal. I think it’s great you’re investing in yourself and doing something you’ve always loved. That’s worth something!

    Published 8.4.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks so much Sam! Makes me feel better to hear that!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  46. Kim Evon wrote:

    I loved your insight as to what you thought of this of the school and really appreciated your detailed experience of each course. I thank you so much for this and it has greatly helped me in making a decision in where I should go to get my education in interior design.

    Published 8.12.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re so welcome and I’m so glad it was helpful! Best of luck to you Kim 🙂

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  47. Lisa wrote:

    Hi Jacqueline,
    Thank you for your candid assessment of the NYIAD, interior design course. I studied at The New York School of Interior Design (NYSID) here in New York and felt that it was an expensive waste of time. I felt very discouraged about my design future.
    After reading your blog, and relating to your struggles with drafting, I am encouraged to persevere.
    Again, I thank you!

    Published 8.23.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      Thanks for your comment Lisa. Wow, I’m shocked to hear that about the NYSID. To be honest, I’ve been feeling a bit inadequate lately as I’ve met some people who have studied there and I felt like, wow I wish I could go there. I’d be curious to know more details on why you felt it wasn’t a great education if you’d like to share. Thanks again!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  48. Karen wrote:

    Thank you for such a detailed explaination of the beginnings of the course. It was very helpful.

    Published 8.25.17 · Reply
    • York Avenue wrote:

      You’re very welcome!

      Published 8.25.17 · Reply
  49. Chloe Yaconis wrote:

    Thank you for this review. I am still undecided in my search for a career, but you make this program sound like a great fit for my lifestyle and interests.

    Published 9.7.17 · Reply
  50. Maria wrote:

    Hi Jackie! Thanks so much for this review!

    I was wondering if you could tell me if you signed up to be RIDQC certified for the $495 while registering for the course. I’m interested in signing up, but I read that you can only get this price upon registration (otherwise its $1,895.00 through DSA independently). I’m asking because I know it’s not *100% necessary* but perhaps you think it is worth it now that you’ve completed a decent percentage of the course?

    Thanks in advance!

    Published 9.8.17 · Reply