Saturday, December 16

Alabama Design Schools: Choosing a School in The Heart of Dixie

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Design may not be the first thing that comes to mind when people think of the “Heart of Dixie,” but Alabama has a vibrant design community that reaches from Birmingham to Tuscaloosa.  With its unique location and relatively affordable cost of education, Alabama just might be the place you want to pursue your design school degree. Before you make your final decision, however, you’ll want to know which design schools in Alabama are the best and how much it will cost you to attend one of them. Once you possess that information, you and your future design career will be unstoppable.

Which design schools in Alabama are the best?

There are a fair number of institutions to choose from in Alabama. With 39 public and 29 private institutions of higher education, there is no shortage of educational possibility for prospective students, 268,183 of whom are enrolled across the state. This means that there is a vibrant community of students with whom any design student can commiserate and, perhaps, begin to build a future client base. Some of the best design schools in Alabama include the University of Alabama’s Department of Design in Tuscaloosa, Auburn University and Samford University. The University of Alabama, Birmingham also has accreditation from the National Association for Schools of Art and Design.

For some students, however, attending an on-campus program will be extremely difficult. They may have full-time jobs or extensive family commitments. But that doesn’t mean they should give up on their dreams. Online design programs are also available in Alabama, including the International Academy of Design and Technology, the Academy of Art University, the Art Institute Online, and Westwood College. All of these programs will give the student the education they need along with flexibility, and those students will not have to sacrifice another important facet of their lives.

How much will design school cost me in Alabama?

The total amount you end up spending on design school in Alabama will vary widely depending upon a number of factors, including whether you decide to go to public school, the amount of financial aid you receive, and what your personal spending habits are like. In Alabama, your tuition and fees at a public school will be roughly $4,907 per academic year. At a private institution in Alabama for the same length of time, your tuition and fees will run about $14,116, which is almost three times as much as the cost of a public school.

The cost of an online program is not extremely divergent from the cost of an on-campus program in Alabama. The tuition and fees will cost you approximately the same amount of money – about $200 per credit hour for undergraduate programs and about $300 per credit hour for graduate programs. However, online students save substantially in other ways. The average costs for room and board in Alabama are about $6,129 per academic year for a public school, and most online students will be able to eliminate or dramatically reduce this cost by attending school while continuing their day- to- day lives. Though it may be difficult to do so, working while studying will definitely make the venture easier to afford. However, some employers tend to view online degrees less favorably than on- campus ones. Try to save some of your work samples, and explain how rigorous your coursework was during your interview.

In summary, no matter where or how you go to design school in Alabama, the act of going will change you and your life. The sooner you start attending a design school, the sooner you’ll be able to realize your dreams.


To learn more about Alabama Design Schools, including curriculum and program info, visit Design Schools.  To learn more about design school accreditation, visit the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.


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