Interior Architecture; Male student pointing to architectural prints on the wall

Interior Architecture


Push the boundaries of design as you conceptualize three-dimensional spaces


 The Corcoran's Interior Architecture (IA) Program offers students a unique opportunity to study, learn and create within a creative environment at a major research university. Our program is the only CIDA accredited program within Washington, D.C., and one of ten interior programs located at universities that rank in the top 70 of US News and World Report's list of national research universities.

We foster a community that encourages creativity and pushes the boundaries of design with an emphasis on conceptual thinking and the design process. Through our studio-based curriculum, the core of our program, students learn to design three-dimensional environments through the use of dynamic concepts, cutting-edge materials and innovative methods and techniques.  

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 Interior Architecture degree granted by George Washington University meets the educational requirement for eligibility to sit for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Examination (NCIDQ Exam). For more information visit NCIDQ Exam eligibility.



Why study at GW


  1. Quality of education: We are the only program in Washington, D.C. accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Programs accredited by CIDA adhere to a strict set of educational guidelines that are considered necessary to succeed in the profession.
  2. Recognition: GW is the 10th highest-ranked national university that offers interior architecture.
  3. Collaboration: GW has many diverse disciplines, creating the opportunity for cross-collaboration. Our students have worked on studio projects to design new spaces across the university, including the School of Media and Public Affairs, the Philosophy Department and the laboratories in the Biology Department.
  4. Networking: We bring in professionals from the top architecture and interior design firms in D.C. for critiques, lectures, events, and to serve on our advisory board. Activities like these help our students make connections and find jobs.
  5. Proximity: We are within minutes of significant architecture and interiors, top-notch museums and galleries, prestigious lecturers and events, the Washington Design Center, the United States Green Building Council, and the American Society of Interior Designer headquarters.
  6. Inspiration: Nearby examples of hotels, restaurants, fashion forward retail and modern furniture stores provide inspiration for our students.
  7. International stage: Our professors are internationally-recognized design experts who bring their unique experiences and projects into the classroom.
  8. Creative careers: With more than 75,000 jobs generating $5 billion annually in income across design, media, and other creative/artistic fields, D.C.’s creative sector is a major asset to the city’s economy.
  9. Location: In 2014, Washington, D.C. was described as "America's Coolest City" by Forbes Magazine, thanks to its dynamic arts and culture scene, diversity, food and young population.




In the IA program you’ll take a core studio and two supporting courses each semester, with topics ranging from graphics to drawing to lighting. The core studio sequence starts with Studio 1; as the studios progress, the projects, which range from residential to commercial to institutional, increase in scale and complexity. The final studio (Studio 5) is the capstone project, where each student creates and designs an individual project based on individual design interests. All students are required to complete an internship for real world experiences. You must fulfill the Columbian College general requirements along with the Interior Architecture coursework.

 COURSES IN Interior Architecture

Curriculum Map

Female student with paper model standing in front of printed designs


Flyer for copenhagen study abroad opportunity


IA students also have the chance to study abroad and explore design concepts and ideas in a variety of cultures. From locations such as Berlin, Rome, London, Paris and Copenhagen, our students and faculty travel the world finding new knowledge and creative inspiration.

Office for Study Abroad



In D.C. alone, the creative sector includes more than 75,000 jobs generating $5 billion annually in income across the design, media and other creative/artistic fields, with career possibilities always growing. Graduates of the BFA program have gone on to jobs at Waldo's Designs, Deborah Berke Partners, Mark Cunningham Inc., Freelance Space Planning & Design, Washington Workplace as well as starting their own practices.

Use Career Services

What You'll Do

architectural rendering




91% of 2017 BFA IA graduates were working in design related industries or enrolled in graduate programs within six months.

JOB PLACEMENT: 73% of BFA 2017 graduates were employed in design related industries within six months.

Firms employing our 2017 BFA graduates:

  • Leo A Daly, Washington, D.C.
  • Tracy Morris Design, LLC, Mclean, VA
  • Zoe Feldman Design, Washington, D.C.
  • Simeone Dreary Design Group, Chicago, IL
  • Windle & Goodman, LLC, Washington, D.C.
  • Atelier MJK, Washington, D.C.
  • Kelley Proxmire, Inc., Bethesda, MD
  • J. Lambeth, Washington, D.C.

ACCEPTANCE INTO GRADUATE PROGRAMS: 18% of 2017 BFA graduates were accepted and enrolled in graduate programs within six months after graduation. 100% of those who applied to graduate school were accepted.


Educational Institutions attended by 2017 BFA Graduates:

  • University of Southern California (Master of Architecture)
  • California College of the Arts (MFA Industrial/Interaction Design)


ATTRITION/RETENTION: 92% retention (Calculated from second semester sophomore year, spring 2015, to graduation in the spring of 2017.)

GRADUATION: 85% of the cohort beginning in the fall 2015 graduated in the spring of 2017.

The interior architecture program leading to the Bachelor of Fine Arts in Interior Architecture Degree is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation,, 206 Grandville Avenue, Suite 350, Grand Rapids, MI, 49503. 


Flagg Building
500 17th Street, NW, Suite 130
[email protected]

Program Administrator
Liz Meitner
[email protected]

Program Head
Stephanie Travis
[email protected]

Undergraduate Advisor
Nadia Volchansky
[email protected]