Patent Registration Exam

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The Patent Registration Exam is a 100-question, 6-hour examination required by the Patent & Trademark Office of patent examiners. The exam is administered in computer format at Prometric test centers throughout the country.

The exam is divided into a 3-hour part in the morning, and a 3-hour afternoon session, with 50 questions per session. Passing requires a 70% score on the graded questions (only 90 of the questions are graded, with 10 experimental questions dispersed throughout the exam).

The pass rate has declined to less than 50% of test-takers beginning in 2013. The numbers of those taking the exam has declined also, to 2232 in 2018.

The Manual of Patent Examining Procedure (MPEP)[1] is provided in pdf-searchable form to test-takers.

The subject matter on the test is changing beginning August 28, 2019, to include (in addition to the MPEP) the last item below:

  • Inter Partes, Post Grant, and Covered Business Method Review Final Rules (77 Fed.Reg. 48680, August 14, 2012)[2]
  • Derivation Proceeding Final Rules (77 Fed. Reg.56068, September 11, 2012)[3]
  • Changes to Representation of Others Before the USPTO Final Rules[4]
  • Implementation of the Global and IP5 Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) Pilot Programs with Participating Offices[5]