For the Public

In order to become an interior designer in Canada, you must meet the standards recognized by Interior Designers of Canada (IDC) and its nine provincial regulatory bodies. These standards include specific education, experience and examination requirements. 
Changes to the requirements have been made in response to several factors:

Amendment to the Agreement on Internal Trade put in place by Canada's premiers in 2009, which mandated that all professional regulators provide reciprocity among the provinces and territories.

Decision by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) to require a four year bachelor's degree as its minimum standard for accreditation.

In 2008, the Council for Interior Design Qualification (CIDQ) mandated qualified work experience as a requirement to write the NCIDQ examinations.

The changes will be phased in over the next few years in order to bring Canada in line with North American industry standards. Sound daunting? Not to worry. The national standards for membership with IDC’s nine provincial regulatory bodies are outlined below. 


Three year diploma programs will be phased out and four year degree programs will become the minimum education standard.

Bachelor’s Degree Requirement
As of January 2015, a four-year baccalaureate will be the minimum education requirement.*

CIDA Accredited Bachelor’s Degree Program
As of January 2017, a baccalaureate degree that has been recognized by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) will be the minimum education requirement.*

* with the exception of the province of Quebec.


Are you thinking about pursuing higher education in interior design? 
If so, you must choose a CIDA accredited degree program in order for your credentials to be recognized. 

Are you currently enrolled in a degree program not recognized by CIDA?
Contact your provincial association

For more information on the changing standards and how they pertain to you, please contact your provincial association.

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