Cadastral Mapping Specialist (CMS)

The purpose of the CMS designation is to recognize professionalism and competency in cadastral mapping techniques that support proper valuation for tax purposes, property tax administration, and property tax policy.

Professional designees may use this designation in conjunction with the production of maps and other graphic images and objects that support property appraisal and assessment administration in accordance with IAAO's commitment to excellence.


    To qualify for the CMS designation, the following qualifications and requirements must first be demonstrated to be eligible to sit for the master examination:
  1. The candidate must have at least three (3) years of experience in cadastral mapping.
  2. The candidate must have credit for the following five (5) educational courses:
    1. IAAO Course 101: Fundamentals of Real Property Appraisal
    2. IAAO Course 600: Principles and Techniques of Mapping
    3. IAAO Course 601: Cadastral Mapping Methods and Applications
    4. IAAO Workshop 171 Standards of Professional Practice and Ethics
    5. Residents of the United States are required to take either IAAO 151 or a Foundation-approved two-day USPAP course. Examination cannot be challenged. Residents outside the U.S. must provide proof of passage of a course covering the particular appraisal standards that govern appraisers within their jurisdiction in lieu of taking either IAAO 151 or a Foundation-approved two-day USPAP course. In the absence of a local standard, USPAP is required.
  3. Prior to sitting for any exam a candidate must be enrolled and in good standing in the CMS program.
  4. The candidate must pass an eight (8) hour Case Problem on Cadastral Mapping.
  5. The candidate must pass a four- (4-) hour CMS Master Examination. The examination can be given only after all other requirements have been met.
  6. Upon successfully completing the CMS Master Examination, the candidate must submit an affidavit attesting to his or her experience before the designation can be conferred.
  7. The candidate must be a high school graduate or the equivalent.


The Master Examination - CMS

The written master examination for the CMS designation is specific to the subject. It is a test of competence, testing the candidate’s knowledge of the specific subject. Specific instructions on the form and content of the examination are provided to the candidate prior to sitting for the examination. The examination is given only after all general and specific requirements have been satisfactorily completed. The examination may be administered by a proctor at any location and on any date; it is preferred that the proctor be a CAE designee or a designation holder in the specialty. However, the Professional Development Committee (PDC) may authorize a non-designee to proctor the examination. Proctors cannot be related to the candidate, nor may they proctor if there is any potential conflict of interest.

An oral examination may be required at the discretion of the PDC. A candidate failing a master examination is permitted to retake it after thirty (30) days.


Content provided for informational purposes only. IAAO’s Designation Program is governed by IAAO Procedural Rules. In the event of a discrepancy, the Procedural Rules prevail.