New Official Definition of Interior Design


The Council for Interior Design Qualification (CIDQ) has just released its newly updated Definition of Interior Design. Originally developed in 2004, the prior definition has become widely recognized and cited as the definitive, comprehensive definition for the practice of interior design by government agencies, jurisdictional statute, regulatory boards, professional organizations, institutes of higher learning, academic publishers, and others. 

The definition was updated for 2019, under the oversight of a task force of eight subject matter experts from the U.S. and Canada representing a broad range of professional experience across practice and education. RLPSer Jessie Santini was honored to be a member of this task force and contribute to the analysis and authoring of the new definition.  The new definition, encompassing the scope of work in current practice and a glossary of terms, was reviewed by regulatory board representatives from across the United States and Canada prior to being approved by CIDQ’s Board of Directors.

Sometimes confused with the occupation of interior decorating, the profession of interior design requires specialized education, knowledge, qualification, and training and extends far beyond aesthetic concerns to matters of public health, safety, and welfare. Professional interior designers can be distinguished by their successful fulfillment of several criteria including Education (majority have a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in interior design and/or architecture), Experience (minimum two years practice in the field), and Examination (NCIDQ Examination and Certification which includes verifying competent application of building systems, codes, and construction standards). 


The official Definition of Interior Design is available through CIDQ.