Tuesday, 9 August 2011

The answers according to the exam committee

As usual, a few days after the publication of the results, also the Examiner's report is downloadable from the EPO website. In the Examiner's report, you can find the correct answers and argumentation to the questions of the exam.
I am pleased to see that our provisional answers as we provided them in March are exactly the same as expected by the exam committee. Thanks to the candidates who provided us with the exam paper and helped us finding the right answers back then.

In addition, the exam committee gives some indication of the alternative answers that have been given by many of the candidates. Unfortunately, the report is not very clear about whether any marks have been awarded for these alternative answers. And if so, how many. For example, they say:
Attacks on claim 8 starting from Annex 6 are weaker than the expected one, since they require the combination of three documents.
Does that mean that you could still get some marks for an attack starting from Annex 6? I don't know, but I will surely ask the committee in October when we have the pleasure to meet the committee members in person to discuss last years exam.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

The results are in!

Today, the EQE preparation season officially started again. The results of the EQE 2011 have been published on the EPO website. I'd like to congratulate the 190 first time sitters (38.78%) who were so successful that they are now entitled to put the words 'European Patent Attorney' in their e-mail signature. Many other candidates also passed one or more papers and are therefore also coming closer to this coveted title.

Looking at the statistics, I can see that the difficulty level of the C paper of 2011, as expected, was comparable to that of last year. In 2010, 39% of all candidates passed the C paper and 11% scored a compensable fail. For this year, the respective percentages were 37% and 10%. It is to be noted that first time sitters score significantly higher marks than resitters. 51% of all first time sitters scored more than half of the available marks. 11% scored between 45 and 49.

The D paper of 2011 has turned out to be a very difficult one. The pass rate for all candidates (50 marks or more) dropped from 43% in 2010 to only 30% in 2011.

For everyone who, unfortunately, did not pass this year's C exam, we do of course have some nice methodology courses and exam training. This year also in some very interesting European cities like Rome, Warsaw and Istanbul. Visit our website for more information about these and other courses.