Apply to Bachelor of Interior Architecture

In our admission process, we work to maintain a successful learning culture, so admission to the Bachelor of Science in Interior Architecture program (formerly Interior Design) is selective.

First-year students applying to enter UTK
For Internal & External Transfer Applicants

First-year Students applying to enter UTK:

How to Apply

  1. You can apply for admission one of two ways: Vol in Progress (VIP) or the Common App. You’ll need a VIP account if you choose to submit a portfolio (see details below). This is also how you apply for scholarships.
  2. Apply to the University by December 15; however, the priority deadline for admission to the School of Interior Architecture is November 2. You must apply for admission by the November 2 deadline to be eligible to apply for competitive scholarships including the category called Chancellor’s Scholarships. Admitted students will receive an email with the link to the scholarship application, which you need to complete by December 15. We strongly encourage you to apply for admission as early as possible.
  3. Indicate “Interior Architecture” on the application.
  4. Consider submitting a portfolio, which is optional. If you’d like to submit a portfolio, please follow these instructions:  After you’ve submitted your application, login to your Vol in Progress (VIP) portal, and under the “Upload Materials” section, select “Architecture Portfolio” from the drop-down list.  (“Architecture Portfolio” is for School of Architecture applicants and School of Interior Architecture applicants.)  Then upload the portfolio files from your computer. If you’re having trouble, please email

Admission to the college is based on the following criteria:

  • GPA (high school)
  • ACT/SAT score (The University of Tennessee has decided to make standardized test scores optional for the 2022 application.)
  • Review of academic records
  • Portfolio score (optional for Interior Architecture applicants)

Special notes

  • We do not admit students to begin in the Spring semester.
  • The deadline to submit applications for admission is November 2 for consideration for admission to the School of Interior Architecture.
  • Students who wish to enroll in the dual degree, Bachelor of Science in Interior Architecture + Bachelor of Architecture, can do so after the semester begins by visiting our Center for Student Development.


Ready to Apply?

Find information about applying to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and submit your application.

Transferring or Changing your Major?

We encourage you to participate in one of our Transfer Information Sessions held each semester. For the FALL 2021 and SPRING 2022 semesters, these sessions will be held on the following dates from 12:30 – 1:30 PM via Zoom.  Please visit this Registration Link to select a date to attend:

October 7, 2021

November 4, 2021

December 2, 2021

February 3, 2022

March 3, 2022

Many, if not all of your questions about changing your major will be answered during theses sessions.

FOR INTERNAL TRANSFERS (those of you who are already here at UT and wish to change your major): Attending a session is mandatory prior to applying to the program.  Upon completion of a session, you will be given access to an internal application form.  A UT GPA of 2.5 or higher is required for consideration.

Applications for Summer and/or Fall admission should be received by March 11, 2022.

FOR EXTERNAL TRANSFERS (Applicants from outside of UT) who are looking to transfer should complete the general university application and select “Interior Architecture” as the major.

The Interior Architecture degree requires eight consecutive semesters (four years) of design studio.  To ensure efficient use of your time in college, we offer an accelerated Summer Transfer Program which offers the first two studio courses and first two visual representation classes during a 10-week summer session. Upon successful completion of the STP, students will start the second year of the Interior Architecture program. Please note on your transfer application if you wish to be considered for entry into the Summer Transfer Program or traditional Fall semester foundation program.

Priority placement into the summer program is reserved for students who have been accepted to the program and have completed 32 hours (one year) of college-level course work prior to starting the Summer Transfer Program.

General Education Requirements for UT Students

UT students who are considering applying for transfer into the School of Interior Architecture should consider taking any of these classes that fulfill the noted General Education (GenEd) requirements:

  • ARCH 111 (AH) Architecture & the Built Environment This course will substitute for the major requirement of ARCH 101 or IARC 101
  • ARCH 211 (AH) History and Theory of Architecture I; space is limited, college permission required
  • ARCH 212 (AH) History and Theory of Architecture II; space is limited, college permission required
  • IARC 200 (SS) Human Environment Relations; space is limited, college permission required
  • DSGN 130 (OC) / DSGN 430 Design Thinking This course is applicable to the Industrial Design and Interior Architecture minors and can be used as a professional elective for both Architecture and Interior Architecture majors.
  • MATH 123 (QR) Finite Math  This math courses will cover the requirement for the BSIA.
  • PHYS 161 (NS) Elem Physics for Architecture & Design Students  This course is specifically designed for Architecture and Interior Architecture students but is open to non-majors as well.

Advanced Placement for Transfer Students

Once you’ve completed the steps to transfer described above, you can consider applying for advanced placement.

If you’ve earned academic credit in Interior Architecture or a related discipline, you can apply for advanced placement (starting the program in the second or third year of studio).

You must schedule an advising appointment in our Center for Student Development specifically to discuss advanced placement. Prior to the advising meeting, compile a portfolio that contains a transcript, course syllabi, course assignment handouts and student projects from all courses and design project assignments that you have completed.

You will submit your portfolio at the advising session. It will be reviewed by Interior Architecture faculty to determine appropriate placement. Call 865-974-5265 to set an advising appointment to discuss advanced placement.