IAAD’s “Interior Design” Department was founded in Turin in 1978 and, on the occasion of its fortieth anniversary, expands its thematic horizons in order to confront the new challenges of the contemporary world.



The identity of the First Level Academic Diploma in “Interior Design” continues to focus on the spatial and material quality of spaces and furnishing systems, along the lines of the Italian design tradition, promoting the comparison with process and language innovations introduced both by new project managing tools and production, and by the pervasive connectivity that makes furniture and living spaces more and more sensitive and interactive.

Considering both well-being and user’s needs as central elements of the technical-creative process of the designer, in the border space between the world of theory and that of the project there are three thematic lines, representing the multiple facets of contemporary design. 



The central issue about research in the interior design world: the achievement of a high spatial quality through a clear interpretation of the project plan and user needs, distribution inventions, functional flexibility and a conscious use of materials.



The transformation processes of matter as a fundamental part of the project development path, considering both the traditional methods and the new tools related to mass customization and its formal and aesthetic implications, capable of generating new languages. The production chain of objects and systems redesigned in the virtuous view of circular economy, so that the innate mankind propensity to renew spaces doesn’t interfere irreparably with the environment.



The environmental comfort of the user as an essential point for the correct design of the interior spaces, which is implemented through the control of natural elements (light, air, water); the adaptation of architectural and plant devices; the conscious spatial declension of the organic sources of the plant world. The critical use of new tools derived from the digital revolution – from the new systems of connection between objects (Internet of Things), to the interaction interfaces with users – considered as a function of its spatial implications.


Quality of the project, authorship, multidisciplinarity, attitude to research and knowledge sharing are the aspects that characterize a modern course of Interior Design, capable of training professionals equipped with the right tools to confront the challenges of the market and the contemporary world.

The study plans deal with humanistic subjects such as art history, architecture and design, sociology and semiotics of design, moving then to more specific topics such as design of spaces and furnishing systems; home design; exhibit design; design of sustainable processes; ergonomics; Science and technology of materials – supported by the modeling laboratory; digital representation techniques – including technical drawing, parametric modeling, rendering and video making.

Thanks to the active support of numerous partners – from companies to professionals, through presentations, company visits, workshops, seminars, internships, projects and degree theses – the IAAD Interior Design Department is able to offer its students opportunities to try challenge themselves alongside the most renowned national and international companies operating in the field of design.


President of Department: Aldo Cibic

Strategic Director: Marco Rainò

Coordinator of the First Level Academic Diploma: Walter Nicolino


I level Academic Diploma in Design (DIPL02)
Specialization in Interior design

Seat: Turin/Bologna

Language: Italian


Three-year course syllabus

scientific-academic area

learning environment


Sciences of communication

Design semiotics

Representation methods and tools

Projective and descriptive geometry

History and culture of design

– History of arts and techniques

– History and culture of design

Mathematics and physical sciences

Design physics

Science and technology of materials

Science and technology of materials




Basic Design

Basic design

Space design

– Furnishing

– Interior design

– Space design

Systems design

Integrated product design

Production technologies

Production technologies

Product design / Space design

Characterizing subjects annually activated by Academic Board




Analysis and representation of shape and project

Representation techniques and languages


Multimedia for design

Project representation and communication techniques


– Modelling

Sciences and languages of perception

Theory of perception



Professional activity management

Professional activity management

Sociology and anthropology of design

Sociology of design

Image graphic design

Image graphic design

Communication design

Communication design



English language












total CREDITS 180

Interior design, schedule for the current academic year

The opening of the academic year is expected in the first week of October, with the usual ceremony.

The ordinary lessons begin 1 week after, according to the time-schedule, and take place from Monday to Friday, while activities on Saturday can occasionally be inserted. Any extraordinary lectures and seminars are provided with due notice.

Lessons ordinarily follow the schedule published on the Notice Board before the beginning of each semester.

It’s a good idea to check the daily schedule posted on the Notice Board to check for any changes and classrooms in which lessons take place.


Academic Year Opening
– 2nd and 3rd years: October
– 1st years: October

I Semester
– 2nd and 3rd years: October / January
– 1st years: October / January

Design Workshop – only 2nd and 3rd years
– February

II Semester
– February / May

Exams and thesis:
– I ordinary session: February
– II ordinary session: June (1st and 2nd years)
– II ordinary session: June (3rd years)
– I extraordinary session: June
– II extraordinary session: September
– Thesis Ordinary Session: June / July

Weeks off ordinary lessons:
– February (1st years)
– January / Febbraio (2nd and 3rd years)
– June

During these weeks, students are required to ensure the availability to participate in any additional classes or catch lessons.
The schedule is subject to changes which will be duly communicated.

Interior design, information on exam sessions for the current academic year

Students are admitted to the examination sessions (2 per academic year) only if they are up to date with payments, are not over the minimum attendance required and – if any – have successfully passed the midterm checks for each subject.

In case of failure of one or more examinations in the ordinary session, students will have access to the call of the extraordinary exam sessions (2 per academic year).

The procedures to access the exam sessions are contained in the Institute Regulation, given annually to students and available at the Didactic Office.

Exams and thesis:
– 1st ordinary session: February 
– 2nd ordinary session: June (1st and 2nd years)
– 2nd ordinary session: June (3rd years)
– 1st extraordinary session: June 
– 2nd extraordinary session: September 
– Thesis Ordinary Session: from June to July 

Interior design, thesis

To achieve the qualification at the end of the third year of the course, IAAD students must submit two theses: a Specialization thesis and an Individual thesis, in addition to the Personal Portfolio.

The Specialization thesis different for each specialization, to be carried out in working groups, is the realization of a project specified by the Institute, consistent with the various issues of the syllabus.

The Specialization thesis is held under the supervision of the Department Co-ordinator and the 3rd year professors, with the support of external interventions – partner companies and their referents.

The Individual Thesis consists of an individual project that the student will perform in total autonomy, identifying a theme, a partner with its referent (External Mentor) and a supervisor in the faculty IAAD (Academic Mentor).

The ordinary session of the thesis is planned for each year in July.

What exactly is ‘Interior & furniture design‘?

In essence it comes to designing spaces and objects of common use in environments mostly closed. Everything revolves around the desire to make the lives of people not only aesthetically pleasing – in fact, to be honest, that’s a minor issue – but also more comfortable and functional. In a word: better.

So aesthetics is secondary? I always thought that for a designer shape and beauty were everything.

You know what they say: the belief is the worst of insanities. Forget the image of the creative ad an extravagant figure. The first thing to remember is that a product beautiful to look at but little or not at all functional normally loses all attraction: the word that has to be always echoing in your head is ‘usability’. The work of the designer is to create a project around a purpose and not vice versa. Unconscious designer first makes a project and only he considers the issue of function and usability: of course, when the product is done and finished, somehow always manages to do something, to make it usable. How difficult, anyway… Aware designer, a professional, follows the opposite path: first he defines the level of functional usability and then dedicates to the actual design without forgetting, of course, appearance.

Which are the subjects of study?

Historia Magistra Vitae: it’s an old concept but still current. You start from the past to understand the present and anticipate future ideas: the history of design and architecture are fundamental to understand how the concepts of space and design evolved. Think about conference rooms and how much they changed, how they looked in the 40’s and how they are today: the first were rigid, static, there were no spaces dedicated to the sponsors, there was no acoustic design; today environments are more flexible, multifunctional, careful to acoustics and many other needs.
Then you study more specific topics such as design methodology, furniture objects design, home design, exhibit design, design of sustainable processes… Also, because each project should be people oriented, ergonomics cannot be missing. IAAD refers to methods defined by Ergo Lab, the national laboratory located in Udine. There are 12 ergonomic methods available to the designer, which can be summarized in three levels: user-friendliness, efficiency, and effectiveness.
In addition to ergonomics during the three years you study many other things: material technologies, techniques of representation, communication strategies of the product…

What’s the aim of the course?

The interior designer, more than anyone else, should keep in mind that his work starts from something – an assumption, a precondition – that already exists in the mind of the customer. We are not starting from a blank sheet ever, but from mindset, habits, needs and desires of the customer. The designer must be able to combine shape and aesthetic experience of use, what we now call ‘user experience’. It’s a balancing act that juggles between creativity and rationality, between poetic inspiration and regulations to be followed. In this synthesis our goal lies.

Why should I come to study Interior Design at IAAD?

It’s because you want to build your professional life on a solid foundation. Our strength lies in the breadth of vision, the first step is to ‘modernize’ the conception of Interior Design, which must not be ordinarily limited to home and furniture design: here we move through many areas sometimes very different such as garden and light design or the design of workplaces, shops and exhibition areas. The vision must be as wide as possible and cross the vast knowledge baggage, because in this work everything needs and nothing can be left to chance.

It is mostly about theory or do we get our hands dirty?

Filling your head with theories without giving you the opportunity to put into practice would be foolish for two obvious reasons. First, experience is the best way to understand and the quickest way to learn. Secondly, if it were like sit and take notes, we would be equal to all others, and that’s exactly what we want to avoid. As you, we want to stand out.
In addition to workshops that help develop dexterity and sensitivity for materials (banal but sometimes being able to choose, for example, the plexiglas instead of wood can save a project) there are made simulations, modelling, projections, educational tours.

Simulations, models … yes I like it.

Slow down, don’t get excited: when we talk about simulations we mean techniques, methods that help you to get inside the customers’ shoes, understanding their real needs and satisfy them to the fullest.
With regards to models, forget the scale reproductions of the galleons or bombers of the Second World War. We are not in a kindergarten. It is true that plastic models give an idea of how you actually deploy the project. Customers understand more from a 3D model, though small, rather than tens of rendering sophisticated (that eventually become two-dimensional once printed losing a lot of charm and comprehensibility). Touching with hand has its own reasons.

You work more in groups or individual?

A little of everything. However, if for group working you mean a way to slog less, have fun and make noise, this is not the case. Working together is much more difficult than what you think. Try to imagine four or five exalted people like you, with the same desire to split the world and to assert their own point of view. Do you see where the challenge is? In these moments you learn to recognize and take advantage of both your own strength and that of your colleagues, making everything available to the customer. You learn to mediate and communicate leaving aside the ego-rigmaroles and focusing on the only real goal: satisfy the customers.
Working individually, on the other hand, allows professors to understand if the program is clear for you and your ripeness towards design is progressing in the right way.

How do I make sure I have what it takes?

You can get some clues. First, the fact that you, at this very moment, are reading these lines, that the other day, sitting at the table, you said you would like to attend Interior Design at IAAD instead of ‘cross-course’ at architecture or a Feng Shui master’s degree in Singapore, that in the end you feel more drawn to educational institutions lively and demanding than to certain attractive ‘parking’ academics. All this shows that you are one who likes to go to the point. One of us.
For the rest, the qualities of a good student are the same that distinguish a good interior designer: versatility, willingness and independence. If you’re surprised more than once to figure out how to renovate your room and, closing your eyes, you could see everything as a 3D movie, as if you could almost touch it with your hands. If you like to read, look around and learn… you’re our man or our woman!

I’m a little worried about ‘drawing’.

If in Interior course entered only novice Giotto, classrooms would be semi-deserted. Who wants to do this job should have an idea of how to hold a pencil, but also be willing to learn – technical drawing, architectural and sketching, which are subjects of the first year. The design is a communication tool used to be understood by others. Then you can console yourself with the 2D and 3D programs that will give you a big hand.

At most, I can work out with technology, I get by in it.

You just scored a point! No one expects you to be the wizard of AutoCAD or Revit (two of the programs that you will learn to use here), but if you do not take three days to figure out how to open a file it’s better.

At the end of three years, should I continue to study or can I start to work?

Discussed the thesis, greeted professors and friends … you are free! Interior design course is conceived to convey everything you need to take satisfaction in the job world. Also because, let’s face it, it’s true that studying what we like does not weigh that much, but with tough lessons, nights on the computer, anxiety for exams… Then, if you want, you can examine specialist issues with the master. The market is competitive and hyper specialization doesn’t spoil ever. The choice is yours.

Why would a customer choose me instead of one coming out of architecture with the specialist and maybe even a master?

When you dive into the sea of job, you’ll realize you already know how to swim: the years spent to confront with designs, models and customers of each type have hardened you, they made you a young professional. Compared with someone who has spent years on the books, you have a great advantage, what is called ‘field experience’. No one wants to spend time to teach a new employee t things that you should be already know. Usually in design studies they use the ‘Filipino method’: you get knocked into the water and, if you can swim, so much the better, otherwise goodbye. Here’s your extra: you’re not the usual post-graduate student, scared and anxious, you are a young designer and as such you have prepared your experiences, your work to be presented and, especially, you know what it means to work under pressure. You could also be thrown in the Mariana Trench. You have studied at IAAD and swim very well; you even have an impeccable style.