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Intellectual Property Law Postgraduate Certificate


About the course

The Postgraduate Certificate in Intellectual Property is designed for trainee patent attorneys and others working within, or embarking on, a career in intellectual property law and practice. This part-time programme provides a comprehensive overview of theoretical, practical and management aspects of intellectual property.

The course is suitable for both law graduates and those with backgrounds in the sciences, technology, engineering and business. Non-graduates who currently work with intellectual property are also considered. No prior legal knowledge is required, as you will be introduced to essential legal principles as the course progresses.

The course is accredited by the statutory regulator Intellectual Property Regulation Board (IPReg) and the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys. Upon successful completion of the Intellectual Property Postgraduate Certificate, students who wish to qualify as Patent Attorney in the UK receive exemptions from the foundation level papers set by the qualifying examinations agencies (see more details in Special Features ).

The programme starts at the end of September and goes through to March and it is delivered on Wednesdays from 1pm to 5pmThe programme also has a January intake. 

This is a unique programme designed by the Law School to support Law Firms and the IP industry. The part-time nature of the course makes it possible to gain valuable knowledge of intellectual property law whilst in full-time employment. UK employers sponsor over 80% of students taking the course.


  • The programme will provide students with essential knowledge about the theoretical rationales and policy arguments for the recognition of intellectual property rights.
  • It will explain the basic principles of Intellectual Property Law and the nature and scope of these rights. It will also explore the procedures, both national and supranational, for the granting and recognition of the rights, and mechanisms for enforcement as well as defences against enforcement.


Contact our Enquiries team.
Course Enquiries: +44 (0)1895 265599 (before you submit an application)
Admissions Office: +44 (0)1895 265265 (after you submit an application)

Course content

The PGCert consists of compulsory modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.


Copyright, Design and Allied Rights

Rationale and subsistence, subject matter (literary, artistic, musical and dramatic works), ownership, licensing, moral rights, economic rights, infringement, permitted acts.

Registered and unregistered design, qualifying for protection, infringement, defences, invalidity and overlap with copyright. Practice and management of industrial design: registering and maintaining a design in the UK and internationally.

Patent Law and Practice

Rationale, requirements for patentability, ownership and licensing, infringement, remedies, defences. Practice and management of patents: obtaining a patent in the UK, EPC procedure, PCT procedure. Obtaining a patent in other jurisdictions.

Trade Marks and Allied Rights

Registration, absolute grounds for refusal of registration, infringement and relative grounds for refusal of registration, defences, invalidity, revocation, use. Practice and management of trademarks: registering and maintaining a trade mark in the UK. International and transnational options for trade mark protection, registration and maintenance in other jurisdictions.

Managing Intellectual Property

Negotiation, international perspectives – jurisdiction clauses, arbitration requirements and elements of technology transfer.

Read more about the structure of postgraduate degrees at Brunel and what you will learn on the course.


Graduates will have the skills to pursue a career in the area of intellectual property as lawyers (in-house or independent), patent or trademark attorneys, IP portfolio managers, patent examiners and IP paralegals. The course may also benefit those who deal with intellectual property matters on a regular basis within industry/business.

For more details of career opportunities, please explore the external sites below:

At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.

» More about Employability

Entry criteria 2018/19

  • A 2:2 (or above) UK Honours degree,or equivalent internationally recognised qualification, in Law, Sciences, Engineering, Technology and Humanities (i.e. Psychology; Sociology).

  • Other related disciplines and qualifications will be considered, with Patents and Intellectual Property work experience, on an individual basis, and applicants may be required to attend an interview.

Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.

International and EU entry requirements

If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions

This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.

English language requirements

  • IELTS: 6.5 (min 6 in all areas)
  • Pearson: 58 (51 in all subscores)
  • BrunELT: 65% (min 60% in all areas)

You can find out more about the qualifications we accept on our English Language Requirements page.

If you require a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you must prove knowledge of the English language so that we can issue you a Certificate of Acceptance for Study (CAS). To do this, you will need an IELTS for UKVI or Trinity SELT test pass gained from a test centre approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and on the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) list. This must have been taken and passed within two years from the date the CAS is made.

Should you wish to take a pre-sessional English course to improve your English prior to starting your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider for the same reason.

We offer our own BrunELT English Test and have pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet requirements or who wish to improve their English. You can find out more information on English courses and test options at the Brunel Language Centre.

Assessment and feedback

Each module will be assessed independently by way of a written examination or coursework.

Term 1 modules are assessed at the beginning of January. Term 2 modules are assessed during the University’s main exam period – the end of March to the beginning of May. Exact dates are confirmed to all students during the academic year.

Special features

Studying Intellectual Property Law at Brunel

Intellectual Property Law at Brunel University is well established and highly rated for the quality of its staff publications, research projects and teaching standard. Staff teaching at the Intellectual Property Postgraduate Certificate include academics and practitioners with recognised expertise in all areas of intellectual property law.


The course is accredited by the Intellectual Property Regulation Board (IPReg), the statutory body regulating the professions of patent attorney and trade mark attorney. It provides exemptions in the examinations to become a qualified Patent Attorney in the UK.

For more details on qualifications, examinations, and exemptions please visit the website of the Joint Examination Board (JEB), the body responsible for the organisation and management of the examinations of CIPA for entry onto the Register of Patent Attorneys.

Patent Attorney

Students preparing to train as Patent Attorneys will receive full exemption from all Foundation Level Papers (P1, P5, P7, D&C, Law) set by the Joint Examination Board and the Institute of Patent Attorneys.


Attendance for lectures is only required on Wednesday afternoons from 1pm to 5pm for two terms, end September to March.

Fees and funding

Fees for 2018/19 entry

UK/EU students: £3,250 part-time

International students: £5,400 part-time

Additional course related costs

Read about funding opportunities available to postgraduate students

UK/EU students can opt to pay in six equal monthly instalments: the first instalment is payable on enrolment and the remaining five by Direct Debit or credit/debit card.

Overseas students can opt to pay in two instalments: 60% on enrolment, and 40% in January for students who commence their course in September (or the remaining 40% in March for selected courses that start in January).