Certificate in Patent Law

Photo of hands on a silver laptop on a table with a lamp in the background

In a high-tech world, patent rights have taken center-stage for both start-ups and established companies. Today, the vast majority of many companies’ value is in intangible assets like intellectual property.

The Certificate in Patent Law, which can be taken fully online, provides members of the professional community a platform to gain in-depth understanding of intellectual property, particularly patent law and patent drafting. The certificate can be obtained in one academic year by taking one class in the fall and two in the spring. Students can opt to attend entirely online (remotely), but they must attend the classes in real-time (synchronously).

The Certificate in Patent Law is designed for:

  • Professionals working in and alongside the intellectual property field
  • Scientists
  • Engineers
  • Executives in technology-heavy industries
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Venture capitalists
  • Practicing attorneys or paralegals wanting to gain expertise in patent law

Participants will gain in-depth knowledge of patent law and the patent system. For those professionals who want to take the Patent bar exam, this course will help prepare for that exam, but more formal exam preparation will generally be necessary.

Inventors and entrepreneurs will benefit from being better able to draft their own patent applications. The program curriculum is comprised of three courses totaling eight credit hours during the academic year and a series of short, non-credit introductory workshop lectures. Students will be required to take Intellectual Property in the fall semester and Patent Law and Patent Preparation & Prosecution in the spring semester. Course descriptions are below.

Students pursuing the certificate will take the same classes in real-time (synchronously) with Campbell Law JD (full-time) students and will have the opportunity to interact with them.

Students in the program will be evaluated (i.e., graded) separately from the JD students and will be graded on a pass/fail basis. Upon successful completion of the program, students will be awarded a certificate from Campbell Law School.

The cost of the program is based on eight credit hours of tuition, which can be found at this link. Total enrollment for the certificate program is capped at 10 students per academic year. Due to the limited nature, certificate program students are not eligible for federal loans, financial aid or scholarships. Students may be eligible for private loans, but these are not administered through or affiliated with Campbell University.

Student Testimonial

Learn more from Dana Vouglitois, a resident of Boca Raton, Florida, who recently earned her online Certificate in Patent Law at this link.


No entrance exam is required for admission, though international students will need to demonstrate proficiency in English. The deadline to apply for the following fall start is July 15.

Apply Here


Introduction to Intellectual Property

This course (a prerequisite to all other Intellectual Property courses) introduces students to United States intellectual property laws: patent, copyright, trademark, and trade secrets. The course is designed to be easily accessible to students with no background in technology or intellectual property law. (Fall semester / 3 credits)

Patent Law

Patent Law provides students a generous evaluation of substantive patent law, including patent eligibility, conditions for ownership, infringement, litigation, and remedies. The course also introduces the concepts of patent prosecution and licensing. (Spring semester / 3 credits)

Patent Preparation & Prosecution

Patent Prosecution trains students in the practical procedure and related law involved in applying for, prosecuting, and maintaining a patent for an invention. The course prepares students in the basics of filing and prosecuting patent applications and will assist students planning to take the patent bar examination. (Spring semester / 2 credits)

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need an engineering or science degree to participate in the program?
A: No, there are no degree requirements (i.e., majors) for this program. NOTE: Individuals wishing to take the Patent bar exam will need to meet the requirements set forth by the U.S. Patent Office.

Q: Must I attend classes in person or in real-time online?
A: Physical, in-class attendance is not required, but is permitted. On the other hand, real-time (synchronous) online attendance is required. Classes are generally recorded for later viewing. If a student misses one or two classes, he/she will review the recordings to catch up. Please note there are minimum attendance requirements.

Q: May I only take one or two of the classes, but not all three?
A: Only students completing all three courses will be awarded a certificate. If you are interested in auditing an individual class, please contact Professor Lucas Osborn.

Photo of Professor Lucas Osborn

Q: What will the examination process be like for each class?
A: There will generally be only one exam, offered at the end of the semester. Because students in this program will not have the same background in law that JD students have, certificate program students will be graded on a separate scale from JD students and will be graded pass/fail.

Q: I am currently a law student – may I obtain the certificate?
A: At this time, this certificate is offered only to those who are not currently in law school. If you have already graduated from law school, however, you are eligible to apply to the program.

Q: Will this program help me prepare for becoming a JD student?
A: The certificate program is not designed as a law school preparation program.

Q: Will this program help prepare me to take the patent bar exam?
A: This program is not designed as a patent bar exam preparation course. Rather, it is designed to give students a broad understanding of intellectual property law and an in-depth knowledge of patent law and policy. Individuals wishing to gain admission to the patent bar (which is required only for those wishing to prosecute patent applications on behalf of clients) will very likely need additional preparation for the patent bar exam. The extent of that preparation will vary from student to student and might range from self-studying to taking a formal patent bar preparation course. You should also note that the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office restricts eligibility as to who can take the patent bar exam, and you can find more information about eligibility requirements on the USPTO website

Q: Will I have access to financial aid?
A: Due to the limited nature of the certificate program compared to JD students, certificate program students are not eligible for federal loans, financial aid or scholarships. Students may be eligible for private loans, but these are not administered through or affiliated with Campbell University.

Q: I still have additional questions – whom should I contact?
A: Questions about the application process should be directed to the Campbell Law Admissions Office. All other questions about the program should be directed to Professor Lucas Osborn.