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(Message started by: Candice Hebden on Dec 19th, 2006, 10:35am)

Title: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by Candice Hebden on Dec 19th, 2006, 10:35am
I'm a computer science graduate (with a BSE) and I've worked in industry for a few years.  I will be attending law school next year (already accepted with scholarships!!!) and I'm beginning to think about taking the patent bar.

Should I try to take it before starting law school (so it doesn't interfere with my studies)?  Or should I wait until I have one year of law school under my belt (to ease studying for the patent bar)?

Also, if anyone knows of a good way to begin studying for the exam, I would appreciate any input.  I have looked at the manual available on the uspto website and it seems to me there must be a more efficient way to begin studying.

I welcome any advice and thank you for your time.

Title: Re: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by plex on Dec 19th, 2006, 2:46pm
I'm a recent BSEE grad, but I've done a good amount of research, so I think I can answer your question pretty well.

2nd year of school isn't going to be much better than 1st year, 1st year is said to be confusing and really stressful, but it is also said that 2nd year is a ton of work, probably not as stressful, but I imagine your time will not be very open either. You should take this opportunity to get this out of the way, and also make yourself more marketable to a firm, if you've got the chance, for some, there just isn't time for them to get the exam out of the way before school starts.

Personally, I need some solid materials to study from when studying for a major test like the patent bar, I found doing the same thing on the LSAT was essential for me. I did not necessarily need a classroom, but I did need a planned guide for me to follow so I would not get stuck studying unnecessary sections. From what I have also read, identify some questions that have been showing up in the past year, make a list from the board, know where to find the answers to them. Also, know the 2002-2003 tests cold, since there will be some re-used questions and you will be able to answer them almost without even looking.

Title: Re: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by dsnutter on Dec 20th, 2006, 11:47am
I am in the same boat as you Candice. I will be finishing up my BS and hoping to go to law school fall 07. I think I am going to try to take the patent bar during the summer. I will be working full time, but I will try to make it work.

I am stil trying to decide which types of materials to use to actually pass the thing. Any ideas?

Title: Re: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by Zinger on Dec 20th, 2006, 12:29pm
Passing the patent bar is no easy task with zero experience in the field.  You'll need to get your hands on some good prep material which can be expensive.  Prepare and prep for the patent bar before or after law school.  Preferably before as that will help you out during OCI, but don't fret about it if you don't take it until after you graduate.

Title: Re: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by SoCalAttny on Dec 21st, 2006, 2:26pm
The patent bar prep material is substantially different from that of law school course material. The patent bar exam is multiple choice via a computer and the bar exam (California) is written essay, practical written and multistate MBE, again not the same.

Study for the PTO exam prior to law school or after law school as suggested in a previous post.

Title: Re: When should I take the Patent Bar?
Post by tonyp on Dec 22nd, 2006, 1:23pm
I'd say get it out of the way before school starts if at all possible.  I'm glad I did.  Besides eliminating a potential distraction, it might be helpful in finding summer work.  It's hardly a guarantee, and many folks find jobs without it, but if faced with otherwise comparable candidates I'd give the edge to the agent.

As for how to prepare, there's a wealth of advice in the huge Prometrics thread.  The common denominators seem to be (a) practice using old exams and (b) learn to be adept at finding random information in the MPEP.  Some folks have had good experiences with particular test prep companies; I can't really speak to any of these.

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