Should you take a Patent Bar Review course?

Passing the Patent Bar is a necessary step if you want to file and prosecute patent applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). It is not necessary to become an Attorney prior to taking the Patent Bar. Those who pass the Patent Bar without admission to a state or territorial bar are registered as Patent Agents, and those who have been admitted to a state or territorial bar AND have passed the Patent Bar are granted the registered title of Patent Attorney.

Prior to becoming a Patent Agent or Attorney, and in addition to taking and passing the Patent Bar, a few qualifications must be met. According to MPEP § 11.7, among all the other qualifications, applicants notably must have “(C) Satisfactory proof of scientific and technical qualifications.” In practice this most often means a bachelor’s level college degree in a science or engineering field, although there are exceptions and caveats.

Many people faced with the Patent Bar wonder if it’s really worth taking a study course prior to taking the big test. Several people have asked me if it’s really worth the extra money to prepare yourself when you could just scrape by paying the exam fee and buying some old materials on eBay.

The question these people should really ask themselves are:

Do I want to pass the test?
Do I want to pass the test the first time?
Do I want to learn and absorb the material to make myself a better Patent Agent?

If the answers to these questions are yes, then one more question needs to be asked:

Which Patent Bar Review course is the best option to help me accomplish my goals?

Here are some reasons Patent Resources Group’s Patent Bar Review Course may be the right choice for those looking to take their law and patent practice career seriously. Just a few of the reasons you should choose Patent Resources Group (PRG) include:

$1,625 worth of additional study materials absolutely free including a free copy of the highly acclaimed ExameWare® patent exam preparation software and a searchable copy of the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP)

Unparalleled faculty including Paul Gardner, PRG’s Academic Director.

CLE credit. Projected CLE credit for the five-day Classroom Patent Bar Review Course is 37.5 hours (including 1.5 hours ethics) and for the Video Patent Bar Review Course is 46 hours.

For a larger list of reasons, see the middle of PRG’s Patent Bar Review homepage.

A better idea might be to ask the course participants themselves, to see if they felt they got their money and time’s worth. Here’s a sampling of what they had to say on the course evaluations:

“The lecturer, Paul Gardner, was excellent. I enjoyed his examples and background he gave to each section.”

“I liked the breadth of the topics, but also the fact that you covered important topics in detail.”

“I appreciated the completeness of the material covered and the focus on what is likely to appear on the exam.”

“Professor Gardner spoke eloquently, with clarity and with full knowledge on the subject matter. One of his best lecture approaches was to encourage questions at the end of the specific situation. He was always considerate, encouraging and respectful.”

“Concise course material and relevant case examples.”

This year, PRG is offering the Patent Bar Review Course in the following locations:

Oak Brook, IL from May 3rd to the 7th
Boston, MA from June 21st to the 25th
New York, NY from September 20th to the 24th
San Francisco, CA from November 1st to the 5th
Dallas, TX from December 6th to the 10th

With courses from coast-to-coast, north and south, there are many options to take a course near you, but if not, you can check out PRG’s video presentation of the same course, with 46 hours of instruction on 3 DVDs. Discounts are available for students, government employees, and military servicemen and women.

No matter how you look at it, investing in yourself and your career is the right choice when it comes to studying for the Patent Bar. We hope you’ll check out PRG when you make that choice.

Patent Resources Group

This post was contributed by Intellogist team member Chris Jagalla.

10 Responses

  1. I passed the patent bar last year after taking PLI’s course, followed by 100+ hours of homework, and I am not an attorney. I wouldn’t have stood a chance of passing but for the course. Even tho I’m technical, there is nothing technical in the exam, it’s all about the minutia of USPTO rules and regs, and the PLI course is right on top of it. There’s also a CD of past exams as part of their material which was absolutely crucial in exam preparation. I highly recommend it.

  2. Thanks for the response Jack. The test is really about being prepared to take the test, just like any other standardized test one might have taken–the SAT, ACT, LSAT, GRE, you name it. You need to know the rules, tips, and pitfalls.

    One of the top reasons people praise the PRG Patent Bar Review course is the included ExamWare software that makes doing these practice questions similar to what you experience during the test itself.

    Also, I forgot to mention this in the original post, but there is a sample video from PRG over on the PRG Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Patent-Resources-Group/38970955942

    Cheers,
    Chris

  3. To be fair, shouldn’t you folks note that your sponsor, Landon IP, is the owner of the Patent Bar Review you recommend here? It’s pretty obvious from the nakedly positive tone here, but you should note somewhere that this is essentially a paid advertisement for the PRG course.

  4. Mark, it’s my opinion that the sponsoring label on the side bar of this blog make clear the relationship between the Intellogist Blog and Landon IP.

    Further information on the relationship between Intellogist, Landon IP, and PRG can be found here: http://intellogist.com/wiki/Intellogist:FAQ#Who_is_PRG.3F_Is_Intellogist_associated_with_PRG.3F.

    Any ambiguity on this point was unintentional.

    Additionally, I contribute to the Twitter feed for http://twitter.com/PRGPatentLaw

    Thanks for your feedback, and we’ll try to be clearer in the future.

    Cheers,
    Chris

  5. […] Should you take a Patent Bar Review course? – An advice column laying out some guidelines to consider before taking a big professional step. […]

  6. […] Should you take a Patent Bar Review course? – A simple examination of why a Patent Bar Review Course might be worth it, with help from and links to our associates at Patent Resources Group. […]

  7. I appreciate that you are providing prospective bar takers with a list of bar review courses. As such, I will comment about Bar Made Easy, which was the bar review course I took to prepare for the February 2011 California Bar Exam. The owners of Bar Made Easy victimized me. In fact, they fleeced me of over $8,000 for personalized tutoring and what one of the owners, Irene, who contacts you, promised me that I was paying for their 100% guarantee program, which meant that if I did not pass the February 2011 California Bar Exam, they would continue to tutor me until I did pass. It sounded like great to me. Then, after they had gotten my money and about a week before the results came out, I asked Irene in an email about the guarantee program. Irene cruelly told me that she had never promised me a guaranteed program. I did not pass the February 2011 bar exam. Irene and the other instructors, Melody and Ellen told me not to use IRAC or write the rule of law because the graders did not care about the rule of law; therefore, it was a waste of time. Look at the 2011 February California essay model answers. They all start with the rule of law. I knew all the law that was tested. However, because they taught me not to write it on my essays, my answers were very shallow. I am certain that the bar graders are still laughing at the answers I wrote. I trusted these women and praised them because they told me that I was writing passing essays. I am not a disgruntled bar taker. My complaint is that they lied to me about the guarantee program just to get my money. I reported them to the California Bar and learned that one of the owners, Melody, is a convicted felon and that her license was suspended at some point because she lied to a federal housing agency. I suppose that she did not learn her lesson. Strangely, they claimed that she was an ex-California essay bar grader. The last time I visited their website, they listed Cindy Bero as a tutor. Her bio made her sound like she was certified in contract law and had years of experience practicing law. Cindy Bero took and failed the California Bar with me in July 2009. She passed the February 2010 bar exam after at least five times. So be warned about Bar Made Easy. These women are wicked!

  8. […] craft the perfect study plan, as you follow a fellow student who chronicles his journey through a Patent Bar Review Course and sitting for the Patent Bar Exam.  Readers who’ve already taken the Exam can compare […]

  9. I’m sorry this happened to you. Might I recommend the Patent Resources Group Patent Bar Review?

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