The National Council for Interior Design Qualification exam is used to as part of the certification process of interior designers by making sure they are qualified and competent in protecting public health, safety, and welfare. There are three sections on the NCIDQ exam: Interior Design Fundamental exam (IDFX), Interior Design Professional exam (IDPX), and the Practicum Exam (PRAC 2.0).


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Who is Eligible?

There are a number of ways one can be eligible to sit for the NCIDQ. They include a combination of education and qualified interior design work experience.

  • CIDA Degree
    • Bachelor’s or Master’s degree from a CIDA accredited interior design program
    • At least 3,520 hours of experience
  • Interior Design Degree – Non-CIDA
    • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree in an interior design program
    • At least 3,520 hours of experience
  • Other Degree plus Interior Design Degree
    • Minimum of a bachelor’s degree in any major and at least 60 hours of interior design coursework earning a certificate, degree, or diploma
    • At least 3,520 hours of experience
  • Associates Degree (60 hours) in Interior Design
    • At least 60 semester credits of interior design courses that earns a certificate, degree, or diploma
    • At least 5,280 hours of experience (education must be completed before experience)
  • NAAB or CACB Degree
    • Bachelor’s or master’s degree from an NAAB or CACB accredited architecture program
      • At least 5,280 hours of experience (education must be completed before experience)
  • Architecture Degree – Non-NAAB or CACB
    • Bachelor of Science or Bachelor of Arts in Architecture
    • At least 7,040 hours of experience (education must be completed before experience)

During the application process you will have to pay an application fee for the sections of the exam you are taking. To apply for all three at once, the fee is $225. To apply for them separately, it is $95 for the IDFX. After you have successfully passed this, you may apply and pay for the next two, at $145.

There are registration fees due during the scheduling process. They are: IDFX – $295, IDPX – $350, PRAC – $455

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When and Where is it Taken?

The NCIDQ exam is taken twice a year, in April and in October, with application deadlines in January and July. Once your application has been approved, you will receive an eligibility notification up to 6 weeks later letting you know how to schedule your exam(s).

The NCIDQ can be delivered all at one sitting or in separate sections at all Prometric test centers around the world. Choose one that is convenient for you.

What Can I Bring?

You will need to bring a valid government issued photo ID with you to the testing site. It is important to note that the name on this ID must exactly match the name provided in your application information otherwise you will not be allowed into the testing center.

The exams are taken via computer. As such, you will not need to bring any personal items such as pencils, calculators, or study material with you. Electronic devices, food, and drinks are also strictly prohibited.

What is Covered?

Below are brief outlines for each of the three sections of the NCIDQ exam.


This section has 125 multiple choice questions. You are given three hours to finish.

  • Design Communication
  • Human Behavior and the Design Environment
  • Building Systems and Construction
  • Furniture, Finishes, Equipment, and Lighting
  • Programming and Site Analysis
  • Technical Drawing Conventions
  • Construction Drawings and Specification


This section has 175 multiple choice questions. You are given four hours to finish.

  • Professional and Business Practice
  • Project Coordination
  • Product and Material Coordination
  • Building Systems and Integration
  • Contract Documents
  • Codes and Standards
  • Contract Administration

PRAC 2.0

This section includes 120 interactive questions. You are given four hours to finish.

  • Programming and Site Analysis
  • Building Systems and Integration
  • Codes and Standards
  • Contract Documents

What is a Passing Score?

Scores for each exam is done by computer. They are scaled ranging from 200 to 800 points. You will need to receive at least a 500 to pass any exam.

These are calculated within 6 – 8 weeks of the closing of your testing window. You will be notified when they are available for viewing through your MYNCIDQ account.

Your score report includes a pass/fail status, scaled score, and a breakdown of each section.

How Should I Prepare?

Mometrix wants to ensure you have a successful exam experience. Therefore, we have designed a study guide and flash cards giving you everything you need. All relevant information and sample questions will be included. These mimic what you will see on the actual exam, making sure you know what to expect. Let Mometrix make the difference for this exam.

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by Mometrix Test Preparation | This Page Last Updated: November 2, 2022