Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts
The purpose of this study was to understand educators' perceptions about the dichotomy between the professions of interior design vs. interior architecture. A survey was sent by email to 393 members of the Interior Design Educators Council who taught in interior design or interior architecture programs. Participants (n=149) were asked to rank the professions of interior design and architecture using Likert scales in terms of feminine and masculine, low and high prestige, and whether they believed the professions of interior design and interior architecture should be united and why. Participants' responses were used to determine whether the gendering of these professions and their perceived prestige affected participants' views about the titles of interior design and interior architecture. Data analysis was conducted using Qualtrics, Saldana coding strategies, and SPSS statistics.
Findings were that participants believed interior design to be a feminine profession, architecture to be a masculine profession, and architecture to be a profession with high prestige. Participants were divided on how much prestige the profession of interior design had, confirming previous research on the professions uncertain value within the public sphere. There was no consensus on uniting the professions of interior design and interior architecture, those who favored unification preferred the title "interior architecture." The study was limited in that it reached only a small representation of interior design professionals. Future research could consider the perceptions of professionals in practice as well as the public to determine which title is best for the profession. Overall, it was concluded that the masculinity and perceived prestige of the title "architecture" did affect participants' perceptions of the title interior architecture.
Tuchek, Kayley, "Perceptions of professional titles: A mixed methods study of interior design vs. interior architecture" (2020). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 18016.
Available for download on Wednesday, June 16, 2021