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 UT Knoxville
For internal and external transfer applicants

First-year Students Applying to Enter UT Knoxville:

How to Apply

Students applying to our Bachelor of Science in Interior Architecture will indicate so on their application to the university:

  1. You can apply for admission one of two ways: Go Vols application or the Common App.
  2. A Go Vols account will enable you to apply for university-wide scholarships and while it is optional, allow you to submit a portfolio to the School of Interior Architecture (see details below).
  3. On either the Common App or via the Go Vols account, indicate “Interior Architecture” as the first choice major on the application.
  4. We strongly encourage you to apply by the university’s early-action deadline of November 1. Applications received after December 15 will not be considered for admission. Apply for admission by the early-action November 1 date in order to apply for competitive scholarships including the category called Chancellor’s Scholarships.
  5. We do not admit students to begin in the spring semester.
  6. Submitting a portfolio is optional. If you choose to submit a portfolio, we invite you to share samples of work or interests that you feel describe you as a creative individual who demonstrates passion and commitment. This can include samples of fine art work, digital media, entrepreneurial pursuits, etc.
  7. If you choose to upload a PDF of your portfolio, please follow these instructions:
    1. After you’ve submitted your application, login to your Go Vols account, 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.)
    2. Then upload the portfolio files from your computer. If you’re having trouble, please email
  8. We will communicate admission decisions in mid-December and mid-February. Please check your application status online through your Go Vols account.

Admission to the college is selective and based on a holistic review of 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.)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Activities, honors, leadership
  • Review of academic records
  • Portfolio (optional for Interior Architecture applicants)

Dual Degree

  • Students who wish to enroll in the dual degree, Bachelor of Science in Interior Architecture + Master 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 2022 and SPRING 2023 semesters, these sessions will be held on the following dates from 12:00 – 1:00 PM via Zoom.  Please visit this Registration Link to select a date to attend:

October 6, 2022

November 3, 2022

December 1, 2022

February 2, 2023

March 2, 2023

Many, if not all of your questions about changing your major will be answered during these 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 10, 2023

FOR EXTERNAL TRANSFERS (applicants from outside of UT)  should complete the general university application and select “Interior Architecture” as the major of choice.  A college GPA of 3.0 or higher is required for consideration.

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 (STP) which offers the first two studio courses (ARCH 171 & 172) and first two visual representation classes (ARCH 121 & 122) during a 8-week summer session. Upon successful completion of the STP, students will start the second year of the 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.

The STP is entirely contingent on available seats in the rising second-year cohort.  Priority placement into the summer program is reserved for students who have been accepted to the program and have completed 30 hours (one year) of college-level course work prior to starting the Summer Transfer Program.

Internal Transfer Application Review Process

We do not have prerequisite requirements for applying to the college, but previous academic success, standardized tests (ACT/SAT) and your statement of intent are thoroughly reviewed to evaluate your desire and ability to participate in our programs. Please note that we require our students to maintain a minimum GPA of 2.50.

Once we receive your application, we will contact you to schedule an in-person meeting with the director of the School of  Interior Architecture. The director will formally notify you by email of her decision regarding your admission, and if you are accepted, you will be informed of the term of entry (Summer or Fall). Summer or Fall admission largely depends on the current cohort numbers and available seats. Upon acceptance, your major will officially change, and you may set up an advising appointment in our Center for Student Development to discuss the specifics of your academic plan.

If you start in the summer, you should expect to be in class all day up to three days per week for the full summer session. Once you successfully complete the summer transfer program, you would join the second-year cohort the following fall.

General Education Requirements for UT Students

UT students who are considering applying for transfer into the School of 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 (Non-Arch section)
  • ARCH 212 (AH) History and Theory of Architecture II (Non-Arch section)
  • 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 Design Studies minor and can be used as a professional elective for both Architecture and Interior Architecture majors.
  • MATH 113 Mathematical Reasoning or MATH 125 Basic Calculus (QR)  Either of these math courses will cover the requirement for the Bachelor of Architecture. 
  • 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 the appropriate placement. Call 865-974-5265 to set an advising appointment to discuss advanced placement.