For current coronavirus (COVID-19) information and resources, click here.  Classes are available online, learn more.

Foundations of Interior Design

Professional Certificate in Foundations of Interior Design

Professional Certificate in Foundations of Interior Design

Classroom Program


6 months


UCR Extension

Get Started

Request Info

Interior design can be a demanding field that requires both creativity and business sense to succeed. Choosing a concise but extensive program to immerse yourself in, can allow you to quickly adopt the skills needed to progress or balance your current professional life. Use this single-quarter program to give yourself an advantage with a certificate to prove your merit.

Understand the basics of interior design by learning about the principles of space planning, color, surface treatments, and lighting. Examine how color theory factors into your design decisions, including color mixing, color psychology, and all facets of color placement. Then, focus your foundational knowledge by selecting two electives in various topics related to the industry, including building codes, drafting, perspective drawing, and residential interior design. Use your certificate to show your understanding of everything needed to boost your interior designing potential, and to confirm you have the skills employers require.

Designed For

  • Those interested in pursuing a degree or career in interior design
  • Those with an art or design background wanting to pursue an interest in interior design
  • Those who already have experience in interior design or related field, and want to reinforce their foundational knowledge

What You'll Learn

  • Best practices and principles in interior design with an emphasis on business skills
  • Methods for working with various materials and resources, such as furniture and lighting
  • The breadth of topics related to color theory, including color mixing, color psychology, and symbolism
  • Two special topics of your choice to focus your area of concentration, including history of architectural interiors, space planning, business practices, residential interior design, and using CAD for interior design

What You Can Do With This Program

Positions are available in a variety of industries and can include self-employment, firms, government, or nonprofit organizations. Jobs might include:

  • Design consultant or entrepreneur
  • Showroom sales associate
  • Merchandise displayer
  • Home stager

Real People. Real Results.

“The program at UCR Extension made all the difference in my path to becoming an interior designer. Without it, I would still be relying on my own intuition or eye for design. It helped me learn so much about the history, the technical part of it all, the right way to design, and the business side of things. I was able to take this career to a new level by acquiring my own clients. I discovered abilities that I didn't know I had, and made great friends along the way!”

Joselyn Rendon

Interior Designer
Belle Living Interior Design and Owner of Joselyn Rendon Interiors
Murrieta, CA

Earning the Certificate

For more information see How to Earn a Certificate

Certificate Courses

Our certificate programs are designed to be flexible, allowing you the option to take just a few courses or to earn the complete certificate. If choosing to complete the certificate, we recommend you get the most out of your experience by following the suggested completion path below.

Quarter 1

Introduction to Interior Design

ART X461.A

3 units

Color Theory and Its Application

ART X461.1

3 units



Instructor Spotlight

“In the 1980's, I earned my Professional Certificate in Interior Design from UCR Extension, and have enjoyed a flourishing career for the past 35 years! I can confidently say that this program was the key to my successful career, and I'm sure it will be to yours. The courses provide well-rounded instruction, each is unique and taught by real-world professionals (like me!), and you will graduate with practical tools that you can immediately put to work in a design firm. Angela Morris Instructor, Interior Designer and TV Host of Home Makeover in the Desert Coachella Valley, CA”

Angela Morris

Instructor, Interior Designer, and TV Host of Home Makeover in the Desert
Coachella Valley, CA

close [x]

Submit Feedback

Thank you for taking the time to submit your feedback about the UCR Extension website. Please be sure to include all relevant information to ensure that we can follow up with your request as soon as possible.

Add Supporting Files