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Patents and Trade Secrets

Module WI000810

This Module is offered by Chair of Corporate and Intellectual Property Law (Prof. Ann).

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Module version of WS 2016/7

There are historic module descriptions of this module. A module description is valid until replaced by a newer one.

Whether the module’s courses are offered during a specific semester is listed in the section Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature below.

available module versions
WS 2018/9WS 2016/7SS 2016SS 2012WS 2011/2

Basic Information

WI000810 is a semester module in German or English language at Bachelor’s level which is offered every semester.

This module description is valid to SS 2019.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
90 h 30 h 3 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


This module provides an introduction to basic concepts of Patent Law and Trade Secret Law.
Topics covered are:
1) Patent Law
- Subject-matter under Protection and Prerequisites
- Proceedings before the Patent Office
- Legal Effects of a Patent
- The inventor's right to the Patent
- Assignment and Licensing
- Enforcing a Patent
- Termination of a Patent
2) Trade Secret Law

Learning Outcome

At the end of this subject students will be able
(1.) to understand the basic principles of patent law and trade secret law,
(2.) to grasp the legal framework of business activity,
(3.) to analyse legal implications of typical business situations and to identify their options,
(4.) to present the results of their analysis in a written memorandum.


German Business Law 1 and 2 (WI000027, WI000030) or corresponding knowledge.

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

Learning and Teaching Methods

The lecture will cover the theoretical aspects of the module in a discussion with the lecturer. It will also provide the opportunity to work individually or in groups on case scenarios (known and unknown), covering issues of patent law and trade secret law. The purpose is to repeat and to intensify the content discussed in the lecture and to review and evaluate legal issues from different areas of law in everyday situations. Students will develop the ability to present these findings in a concise and well-structured written analysis.


Reader, Presentations (PPT), Cases (including model answers)


Haedicke, Patentrecht
Osterrieth, Patentrecht
Kraßer/Ann, Patentrecht
Götting, Gewerblicher Rechtsschutz

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

In the final assessment students will need to demonstrate to what extent they have met the Learning Objectives. This assessment will be held as a written exam of 60 minutes.
Students will be asked theoretical questions. This will demonstrate to what extent they have memorised and understood principles of the law of patents and trade secrets.
Students will also be asked to apply their knowledge to known and fictional cases. This second part demonstrates if students have developed the required legal analytical skills. Students also need to demonstrate their ability to apply their knowledge to fact settings not discussed in the lecture, and to evaluate the legal consequences.

Exam Repetition

There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.

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