University of New Hampshire

School of Law

School of Law

Patent Law LLM/MIP Online Program - Curriculum

Schedule & Course Offerings   |   Course Descriptions

Proposed Schedule and Course Offerings


Students may enter the patent-focused online program at two points during the year – at the start of the fall semester or at the start of the spring semester.

All foreign LLM and MIP students will have the same 12-credit program for their first semester: Intro to American Legal Systems, Legal Research and Information Literacy, Fundamentals of IP, Patent Law, and Patent Practice & Procedure I.

Fall Semester On-Line Courses

Spring Semester On-Line Courses

Summer Semester On-Line Courses

  • Graduate Fundamentals of Intellectual Property
    (3 credits)
     
  • International and Comparative Patent Law
    (2 credits / elective)
     
  • Introduction to American Legal Systems
    (2 credits)
     
  • Intellectual Property Management
    (2 credits/elective)
  • Legal Research and Information Literacy
    (1 credit)
     
  • Patent Law
    (3 credits)
     
  • Patent Litigation
    (2 credits)
     
  • Patent Practice & Procedure I
    (3 credits)
     
  • Technology Licensing
    (2 credits)
  • Graduate Fundamentals of Intellectual Property
    (3 credits)
     
  • International & Comparative Patent Law
    (2 credits)
     
  • Introduction to American Legal Systems
    (2 credits)
     
  • Intellectual Property Management
    (2 credits)
     
  • Legal Research and Information Literacy
    (1 credit)
     
  • Patent Law
    (3 credits)
     
  • Patent Litigation
    (2 credits)
     
  • Patent Practice & Procedure I
    (3 credits)
     
  • Technology Licensing
    (2 credits)

 

  • Intellectual Property & International Trade (3 credits)
     
  • IP Valuation
    (2 credits/elective)
     
  • Mining Patent Information in the Digital Age
    (2 credits/elective)
     
  • Patent Practice & Procedure II
    (3 credits)

Course Descriptions

Graduate Fundamentals of Intellectual Property

Objectives:
To introduce basic substantive requirements and procedures for obtaining, maintaining and enforcing copyrights, trade secrets, trademarks and related subject matters such as rights of publicity and domain names.





Description:
Beyond the basics, the course explores underlying policy goals and conflicts among types of intellectual property, for example, the tension between patent and copyright protection or the tension between federal and state protection. It also considers goals and conflicts with other laws such as free speech. It also considers matters such as the extent to which various types of IP are "property," available remedies, sources of law, and responsibilities of the two main IP agencies as well as those of various courts.

Prerequisites: None, but Patent Law should be taken concurrently.

Intellectual Property & International Trade

The rapid development of international trade and information technologies makes it increasingly important for lawyers to understand the international aspects of practicing international property law, particularly copyrights, trademarks and patents.

Books, music and movies uploaded on the Internet are instantaneously available around the globe. Many modern products (e.g. computers, televisions and phones) involving multiple patents and trademarks are developed in one country, assembled in another county, and marketed worldwide.

Intellectual property clients often need to engage in international licensing transactions, and enforce their rights against foreign parties domestically or overseas.

This course will provide a survey of cross-border legal issues that lawyers are generally faced with counseling clients on intellectual property and international trade.

The course will introduce the basic contours of international principles, treaties and institutions regarding intellectual property, including significant substantive and procedural differences between the United States and other countries of the world.

Prerequisites: Fundamentals of IP

Intellectual Property Management

Intellectual Property (IP) Management is a practical, hands-on course designed to bridge academia and real-life private or corporate practice and is meant to provide the IP professional with a solid foundation in proactive counseling in the area of intellectual property. 





Exemplary topics include invention harvesting or extracting; invention records and disclosures; inventorship and ownership issues; laboratory notebook practice; patent searching; criteria and procedures for determining type of IP protection, particularly whether to file for patent protection or maintain as trade secret; trade secret policies and protection; IP education; IP audits and due diligence investigations; outside submissions; trademark practice (searching and clearance); international filing considerations, agreement practice, and other aspects of corporate IP management including understanding, developing, executing and/or managing IP strategies, IP committees, and IP budgets consistent with overall business objectives.

Prerequisites: Fundamentals of IP, Patent Law

International & Comparative Patent Law

The course is designed for students who already have some understanding of patent law. It will help to increase the knowledge of international aspects of patent law by comparison of law and practice in different jurisdictions, in particular in the US, the countries of the European Patent Convention, and the far east, particularly Japan.


The course deals with basic differences in patentability aspects, such as different views of novelty, obviousness/inventive step, utility/industrial applicability, exclusions from patentability in biotechnology, software and business methods and medical treatment, and differences in procedure of patent procurement, scope of protection and enforcement.

The Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), which allows easy access to international protection by a single application, will be dealt with in such detail as to enable students to use these procedures in their potential work as patent agents.

Information will be given on other important international agreements in the field of patents, in particular the Paris Convention, the TRIPs Agreement (World Trade Organization), the WIPO Patent Law Treaty and regional treaties such as the Intellectual Property part of NAFTA, the European Patent Convention, the Eurasian Patent Convention and others.





Prerequisites: Patent Law

Introduction to American Legal Systems

This course is designed to give students an overview of the American Legal System and to gain a comfort level with vocabulary and dialogue related to the subject. Grading is based on class participation and exercises, periodic short assignments and/or quizzes, and a required paper.

Prerequisites: None

IP Valuation

Valuation has been, and continues to be, an increasingly important element in litigation, administrative proceedings, and basic legal decision-making, as well as informing complex legislative and policy choices. Today's successful attorney must be able to assist the client in making decisions, and the decision making process can often be improved by the understanding and use of actual or implied valuations.

This course will consist of the group discussions, for which readings will be assigned and various subject matter topics will be discussed. The course subject matter can be divided into three intertwined elements. First, we will examine the fundamental concepts of valuation.

Second, the we will deal with the real-world application of the concepts to actual situations in IP practice - either in a litigation, transactional or decision-making context. And third, we will critically examine whether the current use of valuation in the law is consistent with current theory and can be improved upon.

Prerequisites: Fundamentals of IP

Legal Research and Information Literacy

This required one credit course introduces graduate students to the basic research tools and strategies a beginning intellectual property professional needs to work in their practice area and engage in lifelong learning to keep their education current.

The course focuses on: primary and secondary legal authority with lesser coverage on fact research, current awareness and practice tools and strategies; mandatory and persuasive authority; accessing, evaluating and updating secondary legal sources, court decisions, statutes and administrative rulemaking; developing a coherent research strategy including cost effective research; and appropriate choice of electronic formats.

Students will be exposed to LEXIS, Westlaw and free web sites. At the end of the first semester students should be able to take a legal issue and determine the extent of legal information needed; access the needed legal information effectively and efficiently; evaluate legal information and its sources critically; incorporate the selected legal information into their understanding of the issue; understand the economic, legal and social issues surrounding the use of legal information; access and use information ethically and legally. In additional to a graded research midterm and final, students must successfully complete weekly research assignments.

Mining Patent Information in the Digital Age

This course, evolving since 1993, is a unique academic offering at any U.S. law school. It is a cross platform "consumer" survey course to search, mine and manipulate patent and non-patent literature data. It teaches transferable skills consistent with the UNH School of Law Information Literacy Plan.

It is taught in collaboration with patent data vendors and related guest speakers. This is a hands-on course.

The work product is a novelty or patent landscape report. Themes of this course include: Multiplicity of sources, Types of sources, Applications, Multiple access points to same data, Who uses patent data sources, Why use patent data sources, Factors to choose access points, Search approach, Who drives the dollar chain for searches, Free, low fee and premium patent sources, In house and/or outsource searches, Considerations as to who performs differing types of searches, What is the standard of care for patent searches, How to deal with questions of lack of integrity in patent documents, The evolving role of the web in patent searching.

Prerequisites: None

Patent Law

This course presents an introduction to Trade Secret Law but is primarily focused on U.S. Patent Law.

Students will learn the fundamental patent statutes and rules and how the courts have interpreted those statutes and rules. Topics include: inventorship; prior art and loss of right under 35 USC 102; unobviousness under 35 USC 103; utility and patentable subject matter under 35 USC 101; infringement; and remedies and damages. Students will read from a casebook on United States Patent Law and a collection of recent significant court decisions. This course proceeds primarily by lecture, student case presentation and exercise.

Prerequisites: None

Patent Litigation

This course will focus on the unique aspects of patent litigation in the U.S. The course will focus on strategic issues, pleadings, discovery issues, expert witnesses, claim construction, evidentiary issues, jury instructions, post-trial motions, and appeals. The emphasis will be on procedure and written portions of the proceedings, rather than on oral advocacy.

Prerequisites: Patent Law

Patent Practice & Procedure I


Students will learn to draft patent claims that are acceptable to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and to the United States courts.

Students will become familiar with the statutes, regulations, practice, and customs that guide the drafting of acceptable patent claims.

The course format consists of lecture and small section meetings.

There is a lecture for 1½ hours per week to cover theory and general principles. Students meet in small sections with practicing patent attorneys 1½ hours per week to practice and review the mechanics of claim drafting. Students weekly draft and turn in claims for review and feedback by the practicing patent attorneys.

Prerequisites: None

Patent Practice & Procedure II

Students will build on their basic claim drafting skills by learning the rules, regulations, customs, and practices for dealing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) when filing and prosecuting patent applications.

Students will draft one complete patent specification and claims as well as responses to two USPTO Office Actions.

Students may also prepare additional documents for filing with the USPTO.

The course format is 2 hours per week of lecture and discussion to cover theory and general principles plus regularly scheduled small group section meetings with a practicing attorney. During the small group section meetings, the practicing attorney will discuss and provide feedback on the patent application and responses prepared for the course.

Prerequisites: PPI, Patent Law

Technology Licensing

This course will focus on general licensing concepts and principles, as well as more creative licensing arrangements involving the licensing of patents, trade secrets and trademarks. The course will provide an emphasis on understanding and drafting key licensing clauses, valuation and royalty determinations, antitrust and misuse problems, international licensing, negotiation strategies including understanding the role of the lawyer and client, and administration of license agreements.

The course will address various licensing scenarios including licensing in (your client licenses from a third party), licensing out (your client licenses to a third party), university licensing and collaborative licensing arrangements. The course may involve legal research in select areas and hands-on negotiation as part of the grading.

Prerequisites: None