Basic Appraisal Principles - Real Estate Appraisal Course

Basic Appraisal Principles

The Basic Real Estate Appraisal Principles Course is a 30-hour introductory appraisal course that meets the standards set forth by The Appraisal Foundation's required core curriculum.  (Click here for a topic matrix).

The course covers basic real property concepts and characteristics, legal considerations associated with defining, using, and transferring real estate, financing real estate, externalities that influence real estate value, classic economic principles, the application of economic principles to real estate, real estate markets and analysis, and ethics as they relate to the appraiser. This course represents a critical piece of the knowledge foundation that is required for a student to begin their appraisal career.

For each chapter in the course there are key vocabulary words, examples, quizzes, and exams that are provided to reinforce important concepts and test the students' knowledge.

Course Outline

  1. Introduction
  2. Basic Real Property Concepts and Characteristics
  3. Basic Real Property Concepts and Characteristics - Transfer of Title
  4. Real Property Concepts and Characteristics - Legal Descriptions
  5. Legal Considerations - Public and Private Controls
  6. Legal Considerations - Contracts
  7. Legal Considerations - Real Estate Transaction Contracts
  8. Legal Considerations - Real Estate Contracts - Financing
  9. Legal Considerations - Leases
  10. Influences on Real Estate Values
  11. Classic Economic Principles & Types of Value
  12. Economic Principles as Applied to Real Estate
  13. Overview of Real Estate Markets and Analysis
  14. Ethics and How They Apply in Appraisal Theory & Practice

Course Completion Certificate

In order to receive your Course Completion Certificate for the Basic Procedures course, you must successfully complete (with a score of 75 percent or greater) each of the exams and one final exam.

The final exam must be taken under the supervision of a proctor. The guidelines for identifying and utilizing a qualified proctor are provided under the Testing link above.

Additionally, the student must submit an affidavit certifying that the person receiving credit for the course is the same person who took the course. All exams are taken on the Internet, and the exams are instantly graded.

Course materials

The following reference book is provided by VanEd:

  1. Basic Appraisal Principles by Henry Harrison & Burton Lee.

Using the Course Materials

The course is designed to use the course textbook in close conjunction with the internet material as follows:

  1. read the online learning objectives associated with each chapter,
  2. study the corresponding chapter in the textbook,
  3. take the online practice quizzes, typically covering two to three pages of textbook material,
  4. work the online exercise problems at the completion of each chapter,
  5. study the online flashcards, and
  6. complete the online chapter exam.

All chapter exams must be successfully completed prior to taking the online final exam.

Quizzes, exercises and exams are all graded instantly.

Exercises include mathematical calculators, interactive worksheets, keyword concepts and short answers. The instructor's responses to the exercises are provided immediately after the student submits his or her answers.


All testing and grading will occur online. Testing includes quizzes, section exams, and a final exam.

Quizzes are intended to reinforce important concepts and are distributed throughout the course. There is typically one quiz for each two or three pages of text material and each quiz question references the relevant page in the text. If, after two attempts, there are still incorrect answers to the quiz, the correct answers are provided. All quizzes within a section must be completed prior to taking the section exam.

There are two types of exams: section exams, and a final exam. A passing score of 75 percent is required for each exam, and students must pass all exams to complete the course. Exams are graded immediately and results provided online. If a passing score is not achieved, the student is told which questions were answered incorrectly and given a 'study hint' that points to the material the student should review before attempting the exam again.

Final Exam Proctor

The course final exam must be taken online in the presence of a proctor according to the following guidelines:

  1. Identify a proctor - acceptable proctors include:
    1. Librarians
    2. Clergy
    3. Notary Publics
    4. A non-related individual: ( by neither blood or employment)

      Prior arrangement requirements:
       i. Fax proctor's telephone number
       ii. A copy of government issued photo identification
       iii. E-mail address

      Van Education Center will acknowledge acceptance of the proctor by e-mailing the proctor an affidavit with the proctor's name, students completed and acknowledgement of prior acceptance of the proctor.

      If the proctor is one of a, b, or c above no prior approval of the proctor by Van Education Center is required.

  2. Student must present the proctor with government issued photo identification.
  3. Complete the closed book exam without removing questions or answers. This includes the prohibition of copying, printing, or otherwise removing material from the test.
  4. Student should insure the proctor completes a Proctor Affidavit (included in the course).
  5. Student should complete a Student Affidavit (included in the course).
  6. Mail original Proctor Affidavit and Student Affidavit to:

    Van Education Center
    5345 Arapahoe Ave, Suite 7
    Boulder, CO 80303

Appraisal Catalog

Please CLICK HERE to open the Appraisal School Catalog

IDECC Certification

all appraisal courses are IDECC approved

The International Distance Education Certification Center (IDECC) has accepted this course delivery. Students who take this course are encouraged to provide IDECC with feedback about their learning experience.

Appraisal Foundation Certification

all appraisal courses are AQB approved

All VanEd appraisal licensing courses are AQB Approved. The Appraisal Foundation's Appraisal Qualifications Board (AQB) uses independent appraisal educators who are selected for their knowledge and experience in appraising to review all courses that are approved by the AQB. The AQB chief reviewer also reviews the courses to assure objectivity and quality control.