BCIT’s Diploma in Residential Interiors builds on the Certificate in Interior Design Fundamentals and provides the opportunity for students to further their education in the residential field.
Program delivery mode: in person
- This program will be delivered in person for the coming semester.
- We have put measures in place for your safety and well-being, ensuring that all safety protocols are addressed. Please see the BCIT COVID-19 page for details on the procedures that have been implemented.
Your education is our priority and we will continue to deliver the applied instruction, collaborative experience, and industry connections that you expect from BCIT.
Upon completion of the first two terms of the Diploma in Residential Interiors, students who choose to complete the practicum and exit with an Associate Certificate in Kitchen and Bath Design will have acquired the necessary competencies in kitchen and bath design, based on the NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association) curriculum requirements, and will have the necessary educational requirements to write the NKBA’s AKBD exam to become an Associate Kitchen and Bath Designer.
Students that complete the courses in the third and fourth terms of the program and graduate with a Diploma in Residential Interiors will have the skills and credential needed to work beyond the kitchen and bath industries in the broader residential interiors field.
Declaring your Part-time Studies program ensures that BCIT is aware of your intent to complete a program as it is currently outlined and provides you the opportunity to apply for transfer credit.
To submit your declaration:
- Answer all questions completely.
- If required, convert transcripts and documents to PDF files.
- Have a credit card ready to pay the application fee.
Upon approval, a program plan letter will be sent to you confirming your program of study. Please allow approximately eight weeks for processing.
Ongoing Part-time Studies intakes: January, April and September
Fast Track option starts in January of each year
Costs & Supplies
Please see the Part-time Studies Tuition & Fees page for information on part-time tuition fees.
Books & supplies
Students are required to have their own laptops for class.
Evenings and weekends
The credential is offered through part-time studies, allowing students flexibility in the number of courses they take in any given term. A fast-track schedule has been set up for those students who want to complete the Associate Certificate in 9 months or the Diploma in 15 months (this fast-track program is only offered for students starting the program in January). Students are responsible for checking the prerequisites for each course before registering. To maximize the program’s flexibility, courses are offered during evenings and on weekends only, in the fall, winter and spring/summer terms.
If you do not wish to follow the "Fast-Track" layout below and need help with a modified schedule, please contact the Program Assistant.
Check current availability of courses for this program.
Residential Studio - Bath and Private Spaces
This studio course focuses on the advanced development of residential bathrooms and private spaces through lectures, research and field trips as well as individual and/or group assignments. Students will explore the historical evolution of bathrooms, dressing rooms, custom closets, exercise areas and home spas. Building on the design process established in previous residential studio courses, students will conceptualize, analyse and plan functional design solutions based on a detailed client needs survey, NKBA design and construction standards and sustainable design criteria. Students will implement the principles of universal and barrier-free design. Connections with local plumbing fixture suppliers will be established through guest lectures and/or field trips. Students will create working drawings and specifications aligning with NKBA documentation standards, and will present their design solutions through formal presentations.
NKBA Graphic Standards
This course will introduce the students to NKBA Graphic Standards to develop the skills required to sit the NKBA Certified Kitchen and Bath Designer exams. Students will review the differences between drawing methods used in the interior design industry compared to NKBA standardized kitchen/bath industries. Using a current release of software commonly used in the kitchen and bath cabinetry industry, students will become familiar with creating 2D and 3D drawings. Overall emphasis of the course will be on using this software to create drawings for a residential project that aligns to NKBA standards.
Residential Materials and Environmental Factors
The course will examine the physical and psychological needs of people as they interact with their environment. Study will include physical comfort as well as indoor environmental controls as they relate to residential design. A continuation of topics introduced at the Certificate level, this course will provide an advanced understanding of materials typically utilized in residential interior design, particularly those used in the kitchen and bath. Emphasis will be placed on appropriate and sustainable material choices, indoor air quality, and Life Cycle Analysis. Materials will be researched, explored and analysed in terms of their suitability for design, installation and construction, maintenance and creating a healthy living environment.
Residential Construction and Building Systems
This course provides students with the fundamental understanding of wood frame and steel stud construction as it applies to residential projects, and how interior design components interface with the building structure in new and existing residential buildings. Topics include foundations, flooring, interior & exterior wall systems, roofing, plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems, hazardous materials, topics surrounding energy efficiency, windows and doors, base building materials, cabinetry and accessories. Students will further explore best practices in designing a sustainable dwelling. Students will explore the roles of members of the design and building team, and learn standard building terms and processes in order to communicate effectively as a team member.
Residential Building Codes & Accessibility
Students will study the current edition of the BC Building Access Handbook and BC Building Code Part 9 - Housing & Small Buildings, to apply a working knowledge of compliance, codes objectives, definitions and appendices as they relate to the residential built environment. Students will locate and interpret the applicable codes to make appropriate design decisions required for topics such as fire protection, occupant safety and accessibility for both new and existing residential applications. Prerequite: 65% in ALL INTD Certificate Courses and 70% in COMM 1120.
Residential Studio - Kitchens
This studio course focuses on the design and planning of residential kitchens and adjacent spaces through lectures, research and field trips as well as individual and group assignments. Students will begin by exploring the historical evolution of the kitchen in order to better understand how and why the NKBA standards were established. Building on the design process established in prior studio courses, students will conceptualize, analyse and plan workable design solutions based both on a detailed client needs survey and NKBA design standards. Students will implement the principles of universal and barrier free design while adhering to BC Building Codes. The latest design and technological trends for residential kitchens will be explored in order to produce a set of comprehensive design and construction drawings that incorporate state-of-the-art appliance, cabinetry, lighting and finish specifications. Students will be introduced to local kitchen suppliers on field trips to gain an understanding of design and specification possibilities. Students will create working drawings and specifications aligning with NKBA documentation standards, and will present their design solutions through formal presentations.
Residential Millwork and Cabinetry
The focus of the course will be on designing and detailing freestanding and built-in furniture, cabinetry and trim, with an emphasis on residential spaces. Students will examine the various methods, techniques and materials involved in the construction; various types of cabinet and component systems will be discussed, with an emphasis on identifying the appropriate substrate and finish specifications to achieve desired results in terms of aesthetics, performance and budget. Students will analyze and specify various functional and decorative hardware options. This course will introduce students to NKBA kitchen and bathroom cabinet nomenclature as well as AWMAC certification standards and specification methods. Students will learn how to design and specify various ready-made and custom trim options, and produce drawings that can be read and interpreted effectively by both cabinet suppliers and finish carpenters. Course material is enhanced with hands-on experience in millworking through JOIN 4350, which is recommended to be taken at the same time.
Advanced Residential Lighting
This course encourages students to produce creative, detailed lighting design solutions for residential spaces. Emphasis will be on concepts for lighting, practical applications, specifications and methods to enhance the experience of interior environments. Students will create reflected ceiling plans that incorporates advanced lighting solutions and ceiling details. Photometry will be examined and applied to interior spaces for evaluation, discussion and implementation.
Residential Business and Project Management
This course will take the student through the business aspects of a typical residential project. Students will discuss how to establish a client’s program, create budgets for residential projects, communicate design intent, establish project schedules, prepare appropriate documentation, review installation of kitchen and bath cabinets and conduct contract administration on behalf of the client. The course will examine topics pertaining to basic accounting, record keeping, human resource management and how to create an environmentally sustainable practice. Students will be introduced to conflict resolution techniques, customer service principles and standards for ethical conduct.
Residential Studio - Social Spaces
This course builds on previous studio courses to provide students the opportunity to design residential interior spaces beyond the kitchen and bath. Students will explore social areas such as entries, staircases, dens/offices, living rooms, family rooms, bars, media and games rooms. This course has an emphasis on volume development - students will explore, design and detail advanced ceiling configurations, staircase tread and handrail options as well as incorporate level changes into a residential space. Project considerations related to design and construction for various types of fireplaces will be explored. Students will develop a detailed client program to apply innovative and critical thinking to respond to human factors, functional and aesthetic considerations. Students will also gain practice and critique in furniture, window coverings and lighting fixture selection in addition to staging with art and accessories. Students will create working drawings and specifications aligning with NKBA documentation standards, and will present their design solutions through formal presentations.
COMM 2320 is an applied course building on the skills learned in COMM 1120. The course will enable you to develop the persuasive writing and the presentation skills you will need to succeed in your program and at work.
Graphic Presentation 2
The focus of this course is designed to apply students' prior knowledge of freehand sketching. Photoshop and Sketch Up skills to various forms of visual communication. Through the implementation of the elements and principles of design, students will create well- composed and dynamic layouts using formats such as posters and digital presentations. Students will be exposed to basic concepts of graphic design and branding to enable them to develop promotional material such as sales brochures, business cards and portfolios. The course will provide students an opportunity to build on their quick sketching abilities using interior spaces and buildings as their subject matter. Students will also utilize software programs such as InDesign to assist in the visual expression of their 2D graphic presentations.
Design History 2
Students will study the history of 20th and 21st century design, including architecture, interior design, furniture, decorative and fine arts. The work of key designers and architects of this time period will be examined and discussed to understand the historical reasons for their development and the impact on design today.
Joinery Fundamentals for Interior Design
This course will focus on the relationship between Cabinetmaking (Millwork) and Design. Students will have the opportunity to interact with professional cabinetmakers. Students will work in BCIT's millwork shop to gain hands-on experience.
Advanced Digital Illustration for Interior Design
Students will acquire advanced skills in digital illustration using SketchUp Pro, Podium, and Photoshop. They will apply advanced techniques in lighting, 3- D modeling and texturing to create photo-realistic images of interiors. Students will exhibit their proficiency in a professional level presentation of an interior design project.
Residential Directed Studies 2
Students will apply the knowledge, concepts, skills and techniques learned in all previous courses to generate a creative and comprehensive solution to a multi-level new construction residential design project that supports human behaviour within the residential interior environment. Students will conduct research and gather information on a specific client profile that relates to needs that may include age, medical and/or physical limitations, social and/or cultural conditions. Final projects should demonstrate a clear concept and design process, a thorough understanding of design elements and principles, and the ability to provide innovative and practical design solutions that address client requirements. Students will be expected to articulate a project effectively both orally and visually, and integrate current and appropriate technologies into the design of a residential environment. Students will receive guidance from the instructor and/or guest critiques; however, it is a self-directed course where students are expected to arrive at their own design solution that addresses functionality, sustainability, design aesthetics, accessibility and environmental considerations while demonstrating code compliance throughout. Students will also be required to submit a working drawing and specification package.
This course fulfils NKBA’s practicum requirements required to sit the Certified Kitchen and Bath Designer exams. Students who have completed Terms 1 and 2 of the Associate Certificate will be placed for either one 160 hour or two 80 hour placements with a kitchen/bath cabinetry company or residential materials/fixture supplier. Students who have completed Term 3 of the Diploma in Residential interiors may be placed with the aforementioned and/or a residential design firm. Students will perform work-related tasks at the industry sponsor’s place of business during office hours. Students will prepare a portfolio and resume to present to the practicum placement sponsor – students may be interviewed by the sponsor prior to being placed. The first day of class students will be exposed to a variety of design portfolio layouts and formats intended to best market their design work. Information on media software and access to print media will be discussed. Students will be encouraged to prepare their own portfolio and marketing materials for the second day of the course, when they will receive a one on one personal critique of their work. Students will be required to submit weekly assignments and present their experience to peers during the final week of class. Students must also attend a minimum of one Vancouver Chapter NKBA event during the course of their studies in the program – proof of attendance must be submitted during this class.
|*Note: Students completing this practicum with the Associate Certificate in Kitchen and Bath Design first will complete the practicum between terms 2 and 3. Students continuing on to the diploma will complete the practicum at the end of all course work in term 4.|
Check current availability of courses for this program.
Do you have credits from another BC/Yukon post-secondary school? Do you want to know if they transfer to courses here at BCIT? Check out BCIT's Transfer Equivalency Database to find out.
The fast-track schedule allows students to complete the Diploma in 15 months (4 terms) with the Summer term off
65% in each course to proceed.
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Graduating & Jobs
Graduate employment outcomes
The BCIT student outcomes report presents summary findings from the annual survey of former students administered by BC Stats one to two years after graduation. These reports combine the last three years of available results for the 2018-2020 BCIT Outcomes Surveys of 2017-2019 graduates and for Degree 2016-2018 graduates. The reports are organized into three-page summaries containing information on graduates’ labour market experiences and opinions regarding their education. More detailed information can be accessed at the BC Student Outcomes website.
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Apply for graduation
Upon successful completion of all program requirements, complete an Application for BCIT Credential [PDF] and submit to Student Information and Enrolment Services.
Allow approximately six to eight weeks for processing.
All financial obligations to the Institute must be met prior to issuance of any credential.
Note: Students wanting to complete both the Associate Certificate and Diploma should declare both programs. Upon successful completion of the program requirements an application for BCIT Credential must be submitted. Note: The Associate Certificate credential will only be granted if the application for BCIT Credential is completed prior to or in conjunction with the Diploma application for BCIT Credential. BCIT will not grant the diploma level credential and then retroactively grant the Associate Certificate.
National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA)
Students will be eligible to write the exam for the Associates Certificate in Kitchen and Bath Design after the first two terms and completion of the practicum.
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