The Education Pathway to Becoming a Professional Interior Designer or Interior Architect
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An interior designer is a person who works on architecture and interior space. The interior designer develops the plans, researches, coordinates, and manages the projects. They focus on space planning all the while creating cohesive and aesthetically pleasing design ideas for homes and businesses. As an interior designer, you can focus on specializing in a particular design field, whether that be residential interior design, commercial, environmental designs, and much more.
It takes a lot of imagination for an interior designer to look beyond the dull and dreary scene that’s in front of them and visualise a space transformed. The creative interior designer can imagine a logical layout, harmonious colours, and stylish look even in the most uninspiring rooms. If you have a passion for design and bringing out the beauty of a space, then choosing interior design is the perfect career for you to express your creative juices and artistic ability. But how do you become a professional interior designer?
To become a professional interior designer or interior architect in Malaysia, you will need to obtain a degree that’s accredited by the Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM).
You may also be interested to read:
- Malaysia’s Top Private Universities Offering Interior Design Architecture Degree Courses Accredited by Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia
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- Study at a Top University in Malaysia for Interior Design (Interior Architecture)
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How to Become a Professional Interior Designer for Students after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels?
Students after SPM or IGCSE/O-Levels interested in interior architecture can consider going for the 2.5-year Diploma in Interior Architecture or Interior Design with 3 credits.You may check the Entry Requirements for the Diploma by clicking on this link. Upon completion of the diploma, students can enter into Year 2 of the Interior Design or Interior Architecture degree for another 2 years.
If you are still unsure of what to study, then you can go for the 1-year Foundation in Arts , Foundation in Design or Foundation in Natural and Built Environment with 5 credits and then enter into the 3.5-year Interior Architecture degree at top private universities in Malaysia.
Students wanting to work in Malaysia as professional interior designers or interior architects must have at least a degree in interior design or interior architecture from an accredited university. The degree needs to be recognised by the Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM). Study at top private universities whose interior architecture and design degree programmes are accredited by the Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM).
An Interior Design (Interior Architecture) degree programme is a pre-professional programme that provides a recognised qualification in Interior Architecture, which is necessary in the journey to become a Registered Interior Designer in Malaysia.
Graduating with a LAM accredited Interior Architecture and Design degree, students can find work easily as a professional interior designer in Malaysia as well as overseas.
Therefore, students should choose a course that’s professionally accredited by Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM), where the programme is developed in-line with the guidelines of LAM or Board of Architects Malaysia and appraised under the same rigour as the Architecture programme.
What is the Lembaga Arkitek Malaysia (LAM)?
THE BOARD OF ARCHITECTS MALAYSIA IS A STATUTORY AUTHORITY RESPONSIBLE FOR THE ENFORCEMENT OF THE ARCHITECTS ACT 1967
The functions of the Board are provided under the Section 4(1) of the aforesaid Act which includes the following :
- Registration of Architects, Graduate Architects, Interior Designers, Graduate Interior Designers, Building Draughtsmen, Inspector of Works and Architectural Technologists;
- Registration of Architectural Consultancy Practices and Interior Design Consultancy Practices;
Regulation of their conduct and ethics;
- Conducting examinations for admission to the profession;
- Accreditation of architectural programmes;
- Development and Promotion of the profession;
- Representing the architectural profession in any matter at local and international levels.
What are the Requirements for Registration as Graduate Interior Designers in Malaysia?
Subject to the Architect Act 1967, any person who holds qualifications recognized by the Board shall be entitled, on application, to be registered as a Graduate Interior Designer.
1. The applicant shall be a person who:a. Holds a qualification which is recognised by the Board (Please refer to the List of Interior Design Programmes).
2. An applicant with qualifications which is not recognised by the Board shall be required to undertake the Qualifying Assessment conducted by the Architectural Examination Council of Malaysia.
3. The list of Interior Design Programmes accredited by the Board refers to programmes conducted by the relevant universities / institutions on a full-time basis at their main campuses. The list does not include programmes conducted by the said universities / institution wither in the form of twinning, franchise or based on agreements between recognised and unrecognised universities / institutions. Applicants from the said programmes are required to undertake and pass the Qualifying Assessment before they are qualified to register as a Graduate Interior Designers with the Board.
4. Application for registration must be submitted using the prescribed Registration Form together with the following:
- 2 copies of recent photographs
- a copy of Identity Card / Passport
- a copy of the SPM or O Level certificate or equivalent
- a copy of the STPM, A Level, Foundation, Matriculation or equivalent
- a copy of the Diploma or Degree
- Examination transcripts for each year of study
5. Registration fee for the amount of RM 100.00 and processing fees of RM 100.00
6. All documents submitted must be certified as true copies by an Interior Designer and / or Architect registered with the Board.
7. Criteria for Registration: PRE-REQUISITES
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent in Interior Design / Interior Architecture from a LAM recognized / accredited program * (a minimum of 3½ years of full time studies; and
- Minimum of two years (2) of post-graduate internship experience in the field of Interior Design; OR
LAM Part I architectural program (plus minimum of one (1) years work experience on Interior Design projects); OR
LAM Part II architectural program.
- To register as a Graduate ID with LAM at least one (1) year prior to the date of examination;
- To submit a logbook of work experience / internship (for a period of two years) certified by his / her supervisor;
- To submit a Project Evaluation Report certified by his / her supervisor (registered Interior Designer / Architect);
- To pass an Interior Design Licensure Examination conducted by LAM;
- Candidates who pass this examination would be eligible to apply for registration as Interior Designer with LAM.
Candidates without a Bachelor’s Degree or equivalent qualifications in Interior Design from a LAM recognized / accredited program shall be required to undertake a Qualifying Assessment conducted by LAM.
Candidates unsuccessful in the Qualifying Assessment shall be required to undertake the Integrated Design Project – Interior Design (IDP-ID) conducted by LAM.
Candidates intending to take the ID Licensure Examination in 2020 are allowed to fill their logbook of practical experience retrospectively.
What are the Requirements for Registration as Interior Designer in Malaysia?
1. Subject to the Architect Act 1967, any person who is a corporate member of the ‘Institut Perekabentuk Dalaman Malaysia’ or the Malaysian Institute of Interior Design (MIID) or has obtained a qualification which the Board considers to be equivalent, thereto shall be entitled on application to be registered as an Interior Designer.
2. Any person who is registered under subsection 10(2) as an Architect shall be entitled to practise or carry on business as an Interior Designer.
3. Application for registration must be submitted in the prescribed Registration Form as an Interior Designer together with the following :-
- 2 copies of recent photographs
- a copy of Identity Card / Passport
- any other relevant documents
- Registration fee for the amount of RM 400.00 with RM 100.00 for processing fee
4. All documents submitted must be certified as true copies by an Architect registered with the Board.