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College of Human Environmental Sciences

Interior Design Degree Program

ACCREDITED DEGREE. The interior design program leading to the B.S. in Architectural Studies with an Interior Designemphasis is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation,, 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 B.S. in Architectural Studies with an Interior Design emphasis is granted by the College of Human Environmental Sciences at the University of Missouri and meets the educational requirement for eligibility to sit for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Examination (NCIDQ Exam). For more information about NCIDQ Exam eligibility visit:

INTERIOR DESIGN EMPHASIS MISSION. The interior design program’s mission is to prepare students for success in entry-level interior design practice and advanced study. Core competencies protect human health, safety, and welfare through the design of interior environments.

ENVIRONMENT. Our interior design emphasis benefits from its enriched University of Missouri research environment in the College of Human Environmental Sciences with an active graduate program.

PHILOSOPHY. Our educational philosophy is grounded in the values of creating sustainable and meaningful interior spaces to integrate aesthetic quality and compassion for the human condition.

WE ARE DISTINCTIVE. We benefit from the close connection to architectural studies with outstanding faculty advancing study of environment and behavior and faculty advancing study of design with digital media.


The NCIDQ definition clarifies the scope of the services and tasks of the profession. Curriculum incorporates signature characteristics of interior design such as furniture, fixtures and equipment, color, and interior materiality.

The Interior Design Program in the Department of Architectural Studies was among the first programs in the United States to be accredited in 1972 and has been continuously accredited. It is continuously ranked highly among national interior design programs. For further information on accreditation see Council for Interior Design Accreditation.


See Careers in Interior Design.  

Degree Requirements   MU General Education Requirements

Students complete University of Missouri general education coursework and professional Interior design coursework in the following content areas: basic creative development, design planning and analysis, design communication, technical knowledge, history of art/architecture/interiors, business, and design theory.

It is the design studio setting where learning by doing is experienced and realized. The studio is a collaborative and cooperative learning environment emphasizing personal intellectual development as well as content learning. Course work includes six studios and coursework centering on the synthesis of functional, technological, social, aesthetic and symbolic attributes of interior design that support human needs and their aspirations.

We emphasize a quest for artistic beauty, use, and techniques based on precision, truthfulness and sincerity. We believe that good design bonds among the pleasure of beauty, stimulation of the mind, and reasoned adaptation to existing conditions. In the studio, students address life’s complexities and contradictions in order to create physical interior spaces that surpass their visual compositions, creating magical mediating structures that evoke in the act of occupying and inhabiting matter, gravity and light to enhance life.

Solving practical problems, studio experiences emphasize: recognizing the contextual relationship of the setting, the building, and its systems to the interior; understanding of regulations that govern professional practice; researching users’ needs; applying historical precedent; demonstrating technical knowledge in communicating ideas; developing business and professional skills; and creating responsible environmental design solutions.

After completing three required classes during the Freshman year, students apply for admission to the studio sequence required for all undergraduate professional programs. Applications are made at the end of the spring semester of the freshman year for permission to enroll in Studio I. See Portfolio Application for more information

students working on project

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USGBC Solar Decathlon Competition, Washington DC

Photo from USGBC Solar Decathlon Competition in Washington, DC.

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