Master of Interior Architecture

Study at a CIDA-accredited graduate program

Make a dream your new reality

beautifully designed hotel lobby

Always dreamed of becoming an interior designer, or looking to take your design career to the next level? That opportunity has arrived. 

The Master of Interior Architecture is a professional degree (M. INT. ARCH.) offered collaboratively by UCLA Extension and Cal Poly Pomona, College of the Extended University, and is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) and the Western Association of Schools (WASC).

Designed for the working professional, it is the only Master of Interior Architecture Program in the nation that can be pursued on a part time basis to accommodate those with other full-time commitments. Our program incorporates the highest standards of practice, empowering students to build a first-rate professional portfolio of large-scale projects to demonstrate superior design and technical ability.

What you can expect:

  • Distinguished instructors
  • Cutting-edge curriculum
  • Internships & job placement assistance
  • Quarterly admission (Fall, Winter, Spring)
  • Transfer credits accepted
  • Financial aid available

 

Our instructors are practicing professionals; they do this on a daily basis. All are actively engaged in producing real-world equivalents of the types of projects being done in your studio classes. This fosters a sense of immediacy in the learning process, which is invaluable. It also enables many of our students to receive offers of internships and job placements—organically.

Many of our instructors have been with us for a number of years, and all are familiar with the challenges facing working adults who wish to advance their skills.

  • Our instructors are well-regarded in their field, with real-world experience.
  • These working professionals offer networking opportunities and relevant, current insights.
  • Instructors may also include UCLA faculty.
  • To ensure a good classroom experience for you, we provide instructor orientation and training.
  • We regularly review student evaluations of both instructors and courses to ensure continuing quality.

The interior design program leading to the Master of Interior Architecture (M. INT. ARCH.) degree is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation, www.accredit-id.org, 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 Master of Interior Architecture (M. INT. ARCH.) degree granted by California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and UCLA Extension 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: https://www.cidq.org/eligibility-requirements.

Retention and Attrition

Students can begin the program in the Fall, Winter, or Spring Quarter. The following retention and attrition rates are for Master of Interior Architecture students who began the program per calendar year. 

Year
Started
Retention Rate Attrition Rate
2016 85.3% 14.7%
2017 84.6% 15.4%
2018 92.1% 7.9%
2019 87.5% 12.5%

Graduation Rates

Since students can elect to take the Master of Interior Architecture program on a full- or part-time basis, the length of the program will vary from student to student. The following graduation rates are for Master of Interior Architecture students who began the program per calendar year. 

Year
Started
Two-Year
Graduation Rate
Three-Year
Graduation Rate
2015 76.8% 89.3%
2016 71.8% 82.1%
2017 81.6% 92.1%
2018 75.0% 87.5%

Employment

Master of Interior Architecture students employed within 180 days of program completion: 84.8%. Of these, 92.9% were in discipline-related jobs, and 7.1% in non-discipline-related jobs.

Acceptance into Graduate Program

The following are acceptance rates for the Master of Interior Architecture degree program. Students who apply to this graduate program must have a bachelor’s degree in any field.

Year Acceptance Rate
2014 87%
2015 82.4%
2016 90.2%
2017 87.7%
2018 90.2%
2019 90.0%

 

Student data was collected using institutional records and/or a survey that was administered post-graduation. Survey data represents responses from ~70% of graduates.

Can the program be completed on a part-time basis? 
Yes, the program can be completed on a part-time or full-time basis. It is the only Master of Interior Architecture program in the United States offering the option of part-time study.

Can the program be completed fully online? 
The prerequisite Foundation Level Certificate can be completed 100% online. Learn more about our online and remote methods of instruction.

Can I work while I’m a student?
Yes, this program is uniquely designed for the working professional, with the majority of the courses offered in the evening. Students can continue working within their current fields or they can pursue opportunities with local design firms through exclusive access to our job and internship listings.  

Internships offer students the opportunity to work directly in a design office to obtain hands-on work experience. Interns may also earn 2-units of elective course credit by enrolling in the Professional Interior Architecture Internship course (ARCH X 473). Local design firms request students for positions at a variety of levels. It is not uncommon for students to be hired upon completion of their internship.

What are the application requirements? 
For admission to the Master of Interior Architecture program, an applicant must have earned a baccalaureate degree from a four-year program with an overall undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0, and must have completed the 82 prerequisite units, or equivalent. Students may enter the Master of Interior Architecture program in the Fall, Winter, or Spring Quarters. The program accepts non-resident and foreign students. More information on application requirements, deadlines, and how to apply, can be found here: Master of Interior Architecture: Apply

Where do your graduates end up working?
Graduates have gone on to work at world-class companies such as Hirsch Bedner Associates, HOK, Gensler, HKS Architects, HDR, Johnson Fain, SAA, SFA Design, Avenue Interiors, Wilson Associates, KNA Design, Perkins+Will, Rottet Studio, Walt Disney Company, Timothy Corrigan, Joan Behnke, Rodrigo Vargas, Cunningham Group, Malgosia Migdal, Caisson Studio, HFS Concepts 4, Rockefeller Kempel Architects, SweisKlos, and Martyn Lawrence Bullard.

Is the program accredited?
The interior design program leading to the Master of Interior Architecture (M. INT. ARCH.) degree is fully accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Considered to be the highest level of accreditation within the field of interior design education, CIDA’s academic standards prepare students for entry-level interior design practice, and to apply for membership in professional interior design organizations. The Master of Interior Architecture degree granted by California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and UCLA Extension meets the educational requirement for eligibility to sit for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Examination (NCIDQ Exam).

Are scholarships and financial aid available for the Master’s program?
Federal financial aid is available for the six Advanced Level courses offered through Cal Poly Pomona. Please visit the Cal Poly Pomona Financial Aid website for more information. In addition, three scholarships are available: The James R. Northcutt Scholarship (beginning and advanced), and the Howard Hirsch Design Scholarship. For scholarship information, call 310-825-9061.

Where are classes held, UCLA or Cal Poly Pomona?
On campus offerings are held at UCLA Extension facilities in Westwood Village in Los Angeles. Larger lecture courses are sometimes offered on UCLA’s main campus.

What is the age range of the students?
As a continuing education institution, courses are designed to accommodate working individuals and provide extraordinary learning experiences for adults of all ages. The typical average age of our students is 25-55 years old.

What is the difference between the Foundation Level Certificate and the Master of Interior Architecture Program?
The Interior Design: Foundation Level Certificate program provides an introductory framework of knowledge and skills relating to the practice of interior design. It includes courses in history, theory, 2D and 3D composition, drawing by hand and computer, surface materials, color theory, lighting design and studio design projects. Upon successfully completing the Foundation Level, students with a baccalaureate degree and a 3.0 GPA may continue on to the Master of Interior Architecturewhere they learn to develop more sophisticated design concepts that address increasingly complex projects in workplace, hospitality, multi-residential and retail environments. In addition, the advanced curriculum of the Master's program offers courses in building codes, technical detailing, project management and construction documents. Upon successful completion, students earn the Master of Interior Architecture degree (M. INT. ARCH.), and are ready to begin careers leading to the highest levels of the design profession.                                             

Is the degree from UCLA or Cal Poly Pomona?
The Master of Interior Architecture degree is conferred by Cal Poly Pomona.

How long does the MIA program take? 
The program requires the completion of 63 quarter units (42 semester units). Full-time students can complete the program in four quarters/one year. Part-time students taking 4-8 units per quarter can complete the program in 6-8 quarters/1.5-2 years.

Is there a difference in costs for out-of-state residents?
The tuition costs are the same for both in-state and out-of-state residents.

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Completing this program was by far the most challenging and rewarding educational experience of my life. The instructors are all dedicated practicing professionals, the curriculum is CIDA-accredited and first rate, and the program is uniquely suited to the needs of those who can only attend part-time.

Charrisse Johnston, ASID, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP BD+C
Master of Interior Architecture Graduate

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