The NCIDQ exam is the National Council for Interior Design Qualification Exam.
In order to be eligible to sit for this exam, you must meet specific education and work experience requirements. There are several routes to meet this requirement.
Route 1: Bachelor or Master Degree in Interior Design (CIDA or Non-CIDA) + 3,520 work hours in interior design.
Route 2: Bachelor or Master Degree in any major + an interior design degree + 3,520 work hours in interior design.
Route 3: Associate Degree, certificate, or diploma in interior design + 5,280 work hours in interior design.
Route 4: Bachelor or Master Degree in architecture (NAAB or CAAB) + 5,280 work hours in interior design.
Route 5: Bachelor or Master Degree in architecture (Non-NAAB or Non-CAAB) + 7,040 work hours in interior design.
The NCIDQ Exam consists of three sections: Fundamentals (IDFX), Professional (IDPX), and the Practicum (PRAC).
If you have a condition covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act that requires special accommodations, you may make this request after you have applied for the exam.
Examples of accommodations that can be arranged include a separate testing room and break time that does not count against the actual test-taking time.
Can you tell me more about each section of the exam?
IDFX is a computer-based, multiple-choice exam. There are 125 questions, of which, 100 are scored. You will be given three hours to complete this section. Some of the topics that will be covered include building systems and construction, programming and site analysis, human behavior and the designed environment, and construction drawing and specifications.
IDPX is a computer-based, multiple-choice exam. There are 175 questions, of which, 150 are scored. You will be given four hours to complete this section. Some of the topics that will be covered include codes and standards, building systems and integration, project coordination, and professional and business practices.
PRAC is computer-based and interactive. There are 120 questions that are attached to one of three case studies on the subjects of large commercial, small commercial, and multi-family residential. You will be given four hours to complete this section.
How can I register for this exam?
Apply and pay online. The application fee is non-refundable. To take the exam during the spring session, you must apply by January 15th. If you would like to take the exam during the fall session, you must apply by July 15th.
What is the cost of the exam?
$225 to take IDFX, IDPX, and PRAC.
What are the dates and locations of the exam?
NCIDQ is offered during the full months of April and October, at various sites in the United States and Canada.
What should I do the day of the exam?
Report to the testing site early, to account for parking and checking in. Arriving late will prevent you from taking the test.
Be prepared to submit a form of identification that includes your name, signature, and recent photo. This ID cannot be temporary, photocopied, or expired.
There are many items prohibited from the testing area. Some of these include food/drink, calculator, study materials, purse, and briefcase.
What happens after I take the exam?
Scoring of the exam is done via computer. The score scale is 200 – 800. The minimum passing score is 500. The day you take the exam, you will receive an unofficial score report via email for IDFX and IDPX. Your official scores for IDFX, IDPX, and PRAC, will be processed within 6 to 8 weeks of the close of the testing window.
What happens if I don’t pass the exam?
If your specific allotted timeline allows for additional testing, you may re-take the exam. If it does not, you must re-start the registration process as if this is your first time taking the exam. This means any and all scores you previous had will become null.
How Can I Prepare for the NCIDQ Test?
That’s a great question. We’ve broken down the answer into three parts.
- Do yourself a favor and study. Do not walk in unprepared. We have recommended prep materials below, but that only helps if you actually try. Plus, studying is actually proven to be the best antidote to test anxiety.
- Take care of yourself. Make sure you’re eating well, exercising, and sleeping. All of these things are scientifically linked to brain performance. If you take care of your body, you’ll be helping your grades.
- Get a study guide or set of flashcards. Some people study better a certain way. Find your study strengths and make the most of them. We’ve tried to make it easy for you by tracking down the best study guide and flashcard set for your exam. Below you’ll see links to both!