The mission of the Interior Design Program is to educate students and undertake research to promote the relevance of design in the built environment, and in doing so continues to advance its national and international reputation for academic quality and innovation.

Educational Philosophy

The Interior Design Program considers the design of interiors as a multi-faceted endeavor with tangible consequences for the society and the planet. The program’s offerings—including its curriculum, resources, and opportunities—reflect the balance between theoretical and applied knowledge that is needed for an effective engagement with the world through design. At the center of the student experience is a sequence of studio courses that serve as laboratories of innovation, creativity, professionalism, and learning-by-doing. Studio projects provide opportunities for addressing problems through design while also encouraging the synthesis of knowledge that is gained from courses across the curriculum. Moreover, the studio environment enables each student to develop their own creative voice as a designer. In the context of multiple design disciplines housed within the School of Architecture, the Interior Design Program strives to build upon and advocate for specific disciplinary knowledge, while also actively engaging in and contributing to interdisciplinary collaborations with a commitment to global relevance, emerging technologies, social equity, and sustainability. The program acknowledges that its teaching must continue to evolve along with the diverse society that it serves; moreover the aim is not only to follow but also encourage students to be leaders in the profession, their communities, and the world throughout their lives.

Educational Goals

Given its context, the Interior Design Program strives to:

  • offer a world-class design education with exceptional depth and breadth;
  • prepare students for entry-level professional practice in interior design and allied fields;
  • build an intellectual, technical, and creative foundation for possible future advanced study;
  • foster interdisciplinary engagement with allied disciplines within the School of Architecture as well across the UT Austin campus;  
  • draw from faculty research, creative scholarship, and practice as sources of knowledge advancement and evolving expertise;
  • provide students with access to opportunities for developing leadership skills;
  • encourage lifelong learning, professional development, intellectual and creative curiosity.   


Students can expect to work with professionally-minded and dedicated faculty who have enjoyed national and international careers. The core Interior Design faculty have worked at leading firms in New York and London; and as registered interior designers and architects, they are actively involved in creative scholarship, design research, and professional practice.

Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Science in Interior Design (BSID) First Professional

The undergraduate Bachelor of Science in Interior Design is a four-year program of study that is accredited as a professional degree by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA).

Master of Interior Design (MID I) First Professional

A three-year program of study is accredited as a professional degree by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA).

Master of Interior Design (MID II) Post Professional

A two-year program of study that is tailored toward students who already hold a professional degree in Interior Design or a related field.  

History of Interior Design at UT Austin

UT Austin first offered Interior Design classes in 1912, making it the oldest Interior Design program west of the Mississippi River. The College of Engineering offered a five-year degree in Interior Architecture in 1930, which was discontinued in 1938. A sole curriculum remained in Human Ecology from 1945 onward that provided an emphasis area in Interior Design. In 1973, UT Austin’s program became one of the first accredited Interior Design programs in the country. The Interior Design major was transferred to the School of Architecture in 1997, and it has grown and flourished since then, offering a Master of Interior Design degree in 2010. More than 1,000 Interior Design alumni have left their mark beyond UT’s Forty Acres. 


The interior design program leading to the Bachelor of Science in Interior Design as well as the first-professional Master of Interior Design I are 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 Bachelor of Science in Interior Design granted by The University of Texas at Austin  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.