Learn to improve quality of life by designing highly innovative interior environments—and realize your full creative potential in the Bachelor of Science interior design (B.S.) program at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.
Accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA), the interior design program at the U of M offers a challenging and progressive learning approach. With a focus on sustainable, human-centered design solutions and hands-on learning experiences, this unique program will prepare you to become a leader for the next generation of interior designers.
Design that Impacts the Human Experience
You will identify design problems and situations and develop creative, innovative, and research-informed solutions, with the goal of improving human health, safety, and well-being of individuals, groups, and community.
This professional program will prepare you to design holistically, think critically, communicate persuasively, work collaboratively, and act responsibly. Your studies will give you a depth of knowledge, with fundamental, theory, process, communication, research, and technology courses.
The program prioritizes active engagement with the professional community through multiple ways including invited guest speakers, studio reviewers, collaborative projects, adjunct instructors, and internships.
Your course of study may include courses such as:
- Interior Design Studio I & II
Bring your practice to life in these fundamentals courses where you will learn the art of drafting and sketching while studying interior design principles and processes. Explore human behavior and space planning, concept development, and more in these courses that will shape your interior design foundation.
- History of Interiors and Furnishings: Ancient to Present
Connect today’s designs with the furniture and interiors of the past. Travel all over the world to inform your perspective on how people constructed meaning through their lived environments and the political, artistic, cultural, environmental, historical, religious, and technological forces that impacted their efforts.
- Lighting Design
How can light create a dynamic force in an interior space? Learn about light as a design element, psychological aspects of lighting, lighting design process, light sources, luminaires and controls; energy conservation; and how lighting impacts health and well-being. Create lighting plans and three-dimensional drawings that integrate lighting with the interior and architectural elements, and learn the technology of how to implement these designs.
Our interior design program is taught by world-renowned faculty who are shaping the way interior design is understood and studied. It is also substantially supported by the Twin Cities design community, which participates in the program by frequently providing design critics, guest lecturers, and adjunct instructors.
Transforming Into a Global Citizen
Your global education in interior design includes the opportunity to study and reflect on questions around what it means to be a global citizen through community engagement; study abroad programs; and studio projects in global settings. Choose from programs across the globe, including Denmark, Italy, Australia, the United Kingdom, and more. Through these programs, you will develop an important global perspective that will influence your personal design style approach and ability to function in a multicultural setting.
The Design Environment of the Twin Cities: Making Connections: Your U of M Advantage
In the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, you will live and study in a vibrant design community with ample opportunities to make valuable professional connections. Home to a multitude of professionals across the creative spectrum—from fine arts to graphic design, advertising to architecture—this area is an exceptionally enriching professional environment for designers.
Alumni and local designers generously give financial support, time, talent, insight, and experience to interior design students—a vital component in growing your own professional network. The Twin Cities also supports nearly a dozen design-related organizations and associations that welcome your participation and offer opportunities for internships, volunteering, and networking.
Interior design graduates from the U of M enter the field with a readiness to perform in design roles that include interior designer, production designer, lighting designer, and educators.
This is your pathway to the creative interior design studies you are ready to pursue.
If you have completed college credits after graduation from high school, then you are considered a transfer student.
The following factors are considered in the review of transfer applications:
- Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.00; preferred minimum cumulative GPA of 2.80.
- Grade patterns over time - overall GPA, term GPA, and number of withdrawals.
- Presence of any major-related courses and grades in those courses.
- An especially challenging pattern of coursework. If fewer than 26 college credits completed at the time of application, high school record and test scores will be considered for review.
- Space in the major. Note: some majors are more competitive than others.
- Extenuating circumstances. Please explain any grades or academic patterns in a letter of circumstance submitted with your admissions application. Include information about why you are a good fit for the major to which you are applying.
Undergraduate degree in Interior Design from the University of Minnesota:
Program Type: Baccalaureate
Required credits to graduate with this degree: 120
Required credits within the major: 100
Degree: Bachelor of Science
Only completed applications will be reviewed for admission into the College of Design. The transfer application checklist provides details on the application requirements.
If you have questions, call the Office of Admissions at 612-625-2008 or 1-800-752-1000.
Please note that while the programs admit for spring, studio sequencing for Pre-Architecture, Pre-Apparel, and Pre-Interior Design only begin in the fall term.
Transferring Courses and Submitting Studio Work for Review:
Use the Transferology system to see how transfer courses from other schools may fulfill U of M liberal education requirements. After admission, the Office of Admissions reviews a student's transfer coursework to determine transferability of credit as elective and/or liberal education requirements. For classes not listed in Transferology, or on the regional transfer guides at right, admitted students can submit course materials to be reviewed by faculty for transferability into a Design major.
The interior design courses are strictly sequenced over four years regardless of how many or what types of major-related courses were completed prior to the term of admission. It is not common for a faculty to approve major-related transfer coursework for from another school.
If you would like to submit transfer studio courses for review to meet major (versus liberal education) requirements please contact Lizzy Eischens to receive access to upload your work for faculty review to determine transferability. Students who wish to submit transfer studio work for review in lieu of requirements must do so after admission to the program.
*Students enrolled in the Interior Design degree at Dakota County Technical College should contact Lizzy Eischens to discuss transferability of credits.
Portfolio review is a way to evaluate a student's design ability and knowledge of design concepts based on work from the foundation-level courses. Portfolio review assures that students have acquired an understanding of essential design knowledge and are prepared to move on to more advanced coursework. Students typically go through portfolio review in their 2nd semester of the Pre-Interior Design program. Students must pass portfolio review in order to continue on with their coursework and complete the degree.