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   10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
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   Author  Topic: 10-day crash course for the patent bar exam  (Read 3667 times)
dovn
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10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
« on: May 25th, 2007, 12:04pm »
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Hi Everybody,
 
I passed the test yesterday on my first try and thought I would share my experience with all you people in a crunch.  I know this method of studying won't work for everyone but hopefully it will help some people.
 
I rescheduled my exam 3 times until it was on the last day of my 3 month window.  Between work getting ridiculously busy and a new girlfriend, time just seemed to disappear.  
 
I read through this forum a lot to try to find the best way to study.  The 2 options seem to be either get a study course or start taking/memorizing the past exams.  Since all the study courses are fairly expensive and seem to be based on several weeks of studying, I went for the second option.
 
My background is an electrical engineer with absolutely zero patent or legal experience other than Boston Legal on TV.
 
My study regiment (mostly at night after work)....
 
Day1- Started with the morning Oct 2002 exam and quickly realized I didn't have the slightest clue what most of the questions were talking about.  Between the new terminology and being unfamiliar with the MPEP, it was completely confusing and slow to try to find answers to the questions.  I wanted to get a background in patent law first so I searched and found this book..... Introduction to Patent Law (Introduction to Law Series) by Janice M. Mueller.  This book was probably the sole reason that I passed.  It was very easy to read and explained the most important topics is a very clear manner…usually with examples.
 
Day2- Finished painful process of working through the questions on the morning Oct 2002 exam.  I paid careful attention to not memorizing the answers but understanding why the correct answer was correct and all the wrong ones were incorrect.
 
Day3- New book arrived and read first half of it.
 
Day4- Read second half of book.
 
Day5- Took the PM Oct 2002 exam (untimed) and the difference was night and day.  I understood the meaning of reissue, 102 or 103 or 112 rejection, prosecution, PCT and provisional application.  I got about a 65%. Again, when going through the answers, I paid attention to understanding the answer and understanding the wrong answers and knowing where to find it all in the MPEP.  
 
Day6- Beach day.... no studying
 
Day7- Repeat of day5 with AM Apr 2003 and of first half of PM
 
Day8- Repeat of day5 with 2nd half of PM Apr 2003 and AM Oct 2003 but tried to time myself.
 
Day9- Repeat of day5 with PM Oct 2003 and timed myself to simulate actual test.  I got a 65%.
 
Day10-  Went through both 2003 exams and made sure I understood every answer, why all the incorrect answers wer wrong and where to find all the info in the MPEP.  Reviewed all the information on the patentbarquestions wiki page (its free!).
 
Day11-  Ran through a few random questions on the 2003 exams before taking the test.
 
My impression of the test....
-about 50% of the questions were either identical from the previous tests or close variants where I could either pick the answer or I knew exactly where to find the answer in the MPEP.
-know 102-103-112 rejections and how to overcome them and what prior art can be used in each case.  If there is one thing to know without having to look it up, this is it.  700 and 2100 are good for this and the book I mention above was extremely useful.
-really understanding how the Appeal and PCT chapters are organized is very helpful too as those 2 sections are heavily emphasized.
-the rest of the questions are splattered about.... there were a couple on Protest and Duty of Disclosure.  Several on Corrections (reissue, inventor names.... ).  Several on priority.  Some on access to an application.  A couple on inventor not being able to sign.  A couple on filing dates when things are missing or unsigned.
-I worked on each question for a max of 5 minutes before taking my best guess, marking it for review and moving on.  At the end of both sections, I had enough time to review all of my marked questions.
 
In summary, the keys for me were....
1) Buying that book.
2) NOT memorizing answers to past questions but actually understanding the correct answers; understanding the wrong answers and knowing where to find it all in the MPEP.  The night before the test I was able to run through both 2003 exams in about 1.5 hours and get every question correct and know why it was correct.
3) Learning to efficiently search the MPEP.  Definitely use Acrobat 5 to study like everyone else suggests.
4) Probably a bit of luck
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plex
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Re: 10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
« Reply #1 on: May 25th, 2007, 12:27pm »
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You were extremely lucky to get such a high amount of repeats or near repeats, I have heard as low as around 10, to as many as thirty, having half the test be familiar sounds like you were lucky enough to get one of the easiest tests possible.
 
Once you do understand the material though, it is fairly easy to get through the questions, that combined with studying old tests, this site and patentbarquestions.com is a pretty sure way to pass the test, cramming over two weeks is probably not going to cut it though unless, as above, you get an extremely high amount of repeats.
 
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dovn
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Re: 10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
« Reply #2 on: May 25th, 2007, 12:48pm »
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My quess is that 15-20 were word for word identical to previous exams.  Another 15-20 were same question as past exams but with different answers (such as, what can be missing in an application and still get a filing date).  Another 15-25 were different for both answers and questions but the topic was the same as previous questions (like how to over come rejections) so the answer was easy to find in the MPEP.
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azurelan
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Re: 10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
« Reply #3 on: May 31st, 2007, 12:59pm »
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do you want to sell that "introduction to patent law" ?
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dovn
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Re: 10-day crash course for the patent bar exam
« Reply #4 on: Jun 1st, 2007, 12:16pm »
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I am gonig to keep it.  I think it will be very useful to refer back to, especially as I am getting started.
 
I only paid $54 at Amazon...you can probably find it cheaper elsewhere.
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