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Patents and Licensing Agreements

Module WI001071

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 2019/20 (current)

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 2019/20WS 2017/8WS 2016/7WS 2015/6SS 2015WS 2014/5

Basic Information

WI001071 is a semester module in German or English language at Master’s level which is offered every semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Catalogue of soft-skill courses
Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
180 h 60 h 6 CP

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


This module provides an introduction to basic concepts of patent law, trade secret law and the law of licensing agreements. It consists of two lectures: "Patents and trade secrest" and "Licensing".
Topics covered are:
1) Patents and trade secrets
a) 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
b) Trade secret law
2) Licensing:
- economic purposes
- license agreement: basic content
- pitfalls in licensing projects
- antitrust issues

Learning Outcome

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


German Business Law 1 and 2 (WI0000027, WI0000030) or corresponding knowledge.

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VO 2 Trade Secrets Ann, C.
Assistants: Dubov, B.Duque Lizarralde, M.
Mon, 13:15–14:45, 1402
VO 2 Patents Dubov, B. Fromberger, M. Mon, 09:45–11:15, 2770
and singular or moved dates

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 an case scenarios (known and unknown), covering issues of patent law, trade secret law and the law of licensing agreements. The purpose is to repeat and to intensify the content discussed in the lecture and to revise 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)


Kraßer/Ann, Patenrecht
Ann/Loschelder/Grosch, Praxishandbuch Know-how-Schutz

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 120 minutes. Students will be asked theoretical questions. This will demonstrate to what extent they have memorized and understood principles of patent law, trade secrets law, and of the law of licence agreements.
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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