List of Free Online Interior Design Courses & Learning Materials
Learn interior design with these free online courses and learning materials. See the full list of free interior design courses and find the course that is right for you.
Free Online Course and Learning Materials Info
Although most free online interior design courses aren't affiliated with schools, a select few university classes related to design concepts are available. Most courses don't confer credits and can't be applied toward degree programs. Interior design classes and learning materials are often offered by commercial concerns in the industry. Users interested in these free online interior design resources should have a computer with high-speed Internet access to take full advantage of streaming videos and online software tools.
Autodesk Homestyler software allows users to place doors and windows in floor plans, experiment with actual product brands and see their designs in 3D. This web-based software is supported by Windows. Learners also have access to tip sheets for paint colors and design ideas, in addition to video presentations from an interior designer.
This commercial website offers consumers a variety of articles related to interior design and decoration items for sale, in addition to the Decorating Your Home 6-lesson course developed by a member of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). Students learn key concepts about color and ideas for decorating various rooms in a home through text and pictures. Practice exercises are included.
Home and Garden Television
A collection of free online articles and videos, Design 101 is available through Home and Garden Television's website. The articles provide a general foundation on basic design topics, like choosing the right furniture, selecting a cohesive color scheme and deciding between traditional and contemporary designs. Users can also read about the fundamentals of feng shui, color theory and decorative fabrics. Additional resources include furniture and design glossaries and an 8-question design IQ quiz.
Decorating 101 provides a variety of articles with photographs on topics such as color, floors, light, walls and windows. The pages are printable. Learners also have access to photographic home tours, kitchen design ideas, principles of design information and Martha Stewart's blog.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
This school offers most of its classes free through OpenCourseWare. Credits are not awarded, and access to faculty members is not included. The entire contents of original courses may not be reflected in the materials that are made available. Principles of Design is an undergraduate course dealing with advanced theories of design. Students complete readings and assignments dealing with historic periods, lighting and color. Although this course is geared toward stage design, concepts learned may be transferred to design in the home, as well.
Daylighting is an advanced course concerned with the design decisions related to both daylighting and electric lighting. Students complete reading and homework assignments, in addition to a final design project.
Through LearningSpace, Open University offers free courses on a variety of topics. Design Thinking is a 10-hour introductory course available through download, content feed or print. Learners study principles of composition, such as structure, repetition, symmetry and proportion. Assignments include readings, how-to guides and design activities.
People-Centred Designing is a 12-hour introductory course that focuses on usability. Topics include design for users, inclusive design, ergonomics and designing for customers. Although product design is the major focus in this course, the concepts could also be related to the design of buildings, rooms, appliances and furniture.
Sweet Home 3D
Users may download the software for Sweet Home 3D or use it online. This software allows users to draw house plans and arrange furniture pieces within them, seeing the results in 3D. Learners also have access to a users' guide, video tutorial, picture gallery of home examples and a blog.
Utah Education Network
Utah's Family & Consumer Sciences Education division offers vocational education plans appropriate for students from high school through adult in these interior design classes. Courses include links, activities and lesson plans. Interior Design I addresses topics such as line, shape, space, elements of design, color, scale and floor plans.
Interior Design II focuses on the styles and history of architecture, furniture styles, construction techniques, surface treatments, textiles, window treatments and light. Students apply the knowledge gained in Interior Design I and II through various tasks and activities in Advanced Interior Design.