Interior Design: Foundation Level

This foundation level certificate provides beginners with a fundamental education in the field of interior architecture. It is the only program in the nation leading to a Master of Interior Architecture degree that is offered on a continuing education basis.

This program is perfect for...

  • Those exploring the possibility of becoming an interior designer
  • Interior designers interested in enhancing their skills
  • Individuals seeking more knowledge in the field of interior design
  • Students with a passion for interior design

What you can learn.

  • Explore the history of environmental arts, fundamentals of interior architecture in both commercial and residential interiors, color theory and more
  • Become skilled in using AutoCAD and/or Revit, two powerful computer-aided design (CAD) programs favored by major design firms
  • Develop skills for freehand drawing and drafting to communicate design concepts
  • Cover a diverse curriculum providing essential skills for going on to advanced degree classes

Design your future.

interior design

The Interior Design: Foundation Level Certificate is an open enrollment program taught by instructors who are practicing professionals in the fields of interior design, architecture, or fine arts. Its flexible scheduling allows for balanced class loads and scheduling. Internship, mentorship, and job placement opportunities are available through our program advisor. Certificate graduates are eligible to sit for the NCIDQ Examination after meeting 90 quarter, units plus required work experience.

Further, students who complete the certificate with a grade point average of 3.0 or better and have a bachelor’s degree are eligible to apply to the Master of Interior Architecture degree*. 

*Domestic students applying to the Master of Interior Architecture program must reside in one of the states approved for out-of-state distance education, shown here under 'State Authorization Regulations'.

This certificate is approved for international students (F-1 student visa).

Entry Quarter: International students must begin the program in Fall Quarter and follow a specific sequence of courses.

Students participating in courses offered solely by UCLA Extension must meet the English Language Requirements outlined below. Any international student interested in taking classes on UCLA’s main campus must adhere to the English Requirements outlined for UCLA courses.

Acceptable tests and minimum scores

Scores that are equal to or higher than the listed minimum scores from the following tests, taken within the past two years, can satisfy the English proficiency requirement.

  • TOEFL: 80 (iBT)
  • IELTS: 6.5
  • iTEP: 4.5
  • CAE: B (CEFR C1)
  • CPE: C (CEFR C2)
  • TOEIC: 685
  • DUOLINGO (DET): 105

While no other type of test score is accepted in general, students who are affected by test center closures may request an exception to submit an alternate test score.

International Baccalaureates (IB) students or students currently enrolled in an academic institution where the primary language of instruction is English may submit an official academic transcript or verification of enrollment from their school as proof of English proficiency.

Learn more:

International Students: How to Apply

Academic Requirements & English Language Proficiency

Expect more from your education.

Learn from Industry Leaders

"My favorite thing about teaching is being able to influence students wanting to change their career into a new world—a creative world in which they will enjoy doing what they do for the rest of their lives."

Luis de Moraes

Virtual Open House
Master of Interior Architecture Open House

Wednesday, May 17, 6:00PM–7:30PM PT

Learn about the career opportunities and benefits of our nationally ranked Master of Interior Architecture Program.


The amazing instructors taught me how to think as a designer, and provided me with all the tools to succeed in the field, from conceptualizing spaces to smart business practices.

Jennifer Casey
Interior Design Student

What our certificates have done for our students.


feel a certificate helped them enhance their careers

1 in 4

received a salary increase after starting a certificate program


switched careers after completing a certificate program


recommend a certificate program to others

Source: UCLA Extension Certificate Graduates Survey


Click below to view the required and elective courses, if applicable, for this program.

Required Courses
ARCH X 427.7
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 427.8A
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring
ARCH X 427.8B
Typically Offered: Winter, Summer
ARCH X 427.8C
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring
ARCH X 427.8D
Typically Offered: Winter, Summer
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 433
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 438
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 452.1
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 467.15
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 467.17A
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 468.20
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
see all courses
Defined Elective - Digital Presentation II
ARCH X 468.5A
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 468.13A
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
Defined Elective - Digital Presentation III
ARCH X 468.5B
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ARCH X 438.13B
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

Estimated Cost Breakdown

All courses in this program are paid for individually, unless otherwise noted. An application form is required to establish candidacy in this program. From the 'Apply Now' button, complete the online application and pay the application fee if applicable.

Application & Candidacy Fee


Estimated Program Tuition


Estimated program textbook/materials


*The Application & Candidacy Fee establishes your candidacy in the program for a period of time covering normal progress toward completion and may allow you to access a variety of program benefits.

**Federal Financial Aid Gainful Employment Disclosures

The U.S. Department of Education requires colleges and universities to disclose certain information for any financial aid eligible program that, “prepares students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation”. This information includes program costs; occupations that the program prepares students to enter; occupational profiles; on time completion rate; and for the most recent award year: the number of students who have completed the program, the number of students who complete the program within the estimated duration, the job placement rate, and the median Title IV and private loan debt incurred by those who complete the program. For gainful employment information for this program, visit our Financial Aid page.

An internship in interior design can provide you with practical experience in a variety of job functions. Certificate students must complete the first three quarters of the program curriculum, to gain necessary technical skills, before completing the application for approval to enroll in an internship.

Learn More

color swatches and design sketches

Take Your Career to the Next Level

Upon successful completion of the Interior Design: Foundation Level Certificate, students with a baccalaureate degree may continue on to the Master of Interior Architecture degree program, offered collaboratively with Cal Poly Pomona. Masters students further hone their design skills and technical abilities to create a professional portfolio, while also setting themselves up for greater access to advancement opportunities and a higher earning potential.

Learn More

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