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Becoming a Patent Agent/Lawyer
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   Does it matter what your Ph.D. is in?
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   Author  Topic: Does it matter what your Ph.D. is in?  (Read 2381 times)
megelaine0505
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Posts: 4
Re: Does it matter what your Ph.D. is in?
« Reply #5 on: Jan 25th, 2007, 7:39am »
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For the readers of this thread who are considering attending grad school and earning a PhD as a means to the end of practicing law as an IP attorney:
 
Do not earn your PhD simply as a way to practice law.  If you enter a graduate program because you think it will increase your chances of getting into "the" law school and "the" law firm, you will be disappointed.  Yes, it will increase your marketability.
 
However, it will also decrease your overall happiness while you are spending the 4-6 years it will take to earn your PhD to increase your marketability for "the" firm.  Graduate school is a big commitment, requiring many, many hours in the lab.
 
Should you earn a PhD?  If you like the relevant science and have a passion for learning more about it, yes.  If you are considering it simply to make yourself more marketable as an attorney, no.
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forest
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Posts: 59
Re: Does it matter what your Ph.D. is in?
« Reply #6 on: Jan 25th, 2007, 8:45am »
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I think if you want to go into IP, then you should have some liking for "the relevant science," which would make grad school more bearable. If not, why not just go straight to law school?
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"Science is a wonderful thing if one does not have to earn one's living at it." ~Albert Einstein
Saskia
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Posts: 2
Re: Does it matter what your Ph.D. is in?
« Reply #7 on: Apr 25th, 2007, 11:15pm »
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You won't need a PhD to take the patent bar.  You need to have a bachelor's in one of the named subjects in the PTO's General Bulletin or you have to submit transcripts and pages from course catalogs proving that you have education equivalent to one of the named degrees.  I have a PhD in molecular biology and more than 10 years of postgraduate work experience, but because my bachelor's degree was in physiology -- a specialty of biology in everyone's eyes except for the OED -- I had to submit pages and pages of course descriptions covering biology, botany, molecular biology, genetics, chemistry, physics, and biochem.  
 
Get a Ph.D. in the area that you are most interested in because it's probably going to take you 5-8 years to finish it.
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