The only program in nation’s capital that is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation, the MFA in Interior Architecture and Design gives students access to urban resources, the top architecture and interior design firms in DC, and a studio-oriented curriculum that creates innovative, design thinkers. Through the studio-based core curriculum of 60 required credits, students learn about habitable environments ranging from small interiors to larger, more complex commercial and institutional spaces. With projects focused on current design issues as well as lectures and critiques from distinguished professionals, the IAD program is a carefully sequenced series of courses building on theoretical, technical, and creative challenges and experiences.
Specific admission requirements are shown on the Graduate Program Finder.
Prerequisite: A bachelor’s degree in a field other than interior design, including a minimum of 30 credit hours of liberal arts and sciences courses. A portfolio consisting of examples of relevant work is to be submitted with the application to the program.
The following requirements must be fulfilled:
The general requirements stated under Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Graduate Programs.
Requirements: 60 credits including:
IAD 6200 Studio I
IAD 6205 Interior Materials
IAD 6210 Sketching Architecture and Interiors
IAD 6300 Studio 2
IAD 6305 Graphic Communications
IAD 6310 Digital Drafting & Modeling
IAD 6400 Studio 3
IAD 6405 History of Modern Architecture and Design
IAD 6410 Sustainability/LEED: Arch&Des
IAD 6500 Studio 4
IAD 6505 Lighting & Acoustics
IAD 6510 Pre-Design for Studio 5
IAD 6600 Studio 5
?Prospective students must not have an undergraduate degree in Interior Design or Architecture
Prospective students must have undergraduate degree with 30 credit hours of liberal arts and science courses*
A portfolio is required (view portfolio requirements)
The GRE exam is optional, but highly recommended
Internship Requirement: An internship of 120 hours is required in order to complete the BFA IAD or MFA IAD degree. The internship must be completed while the student is enrolled in the IAD program. The internship must be pre-approved by the undergraduate or graduate advisor. After completion of the 120 hours, the student and their direct employer must fill out the necessary paperwork and submit it to the instructor of their Professional Practice course (IAD 4605 or IAD 6605) in their last semester for final approval.
*Acceptance into the MFA IAD First Professional degree track is contingent upon successful completion and verification of an undergraduate degree in a field other than interior design or architecture and a full review of all transcripts from all prior institutions of study, both undergraduate and graduate, verifying that a minimum of thirty semester credit hours of liberal arts and sciences courses have been successfully completed.
Liberal arts and science courses include: English composition, oral communication, logic, literature, foreign language, history, fine arts history, philosophy, biology, botany, zoology, mathematics, physics, chemistry, anthropology, archeology, sociology, psychology, economics and humanities, and do not include professional studies (e.g. business courses) or studies that are considered interior design coursework. The program is accredited by CIDA, Council for Interior Design Accreditation. Read their complete definition of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
Middle States Accredited
Facts & Figures
International Financial Aid:
The Office of Student Financial Assistance offers financial aid in the form of Federal Stafford Loans and alternative loans to graduate students seeking to finance their graduate educations.