FAQs

General

Is QPIP a license to practice?

The QPIP title does not give a license to practice, i.e. it will not be required in order to work as a patent information professional, but it indicates a competence level and ensures (future) employers that the QPIP is an all-round professional, being able to do any kind of patent related search and analysis.

Is there a fee for maintaining my QPIP registration?

A QPIP registration renewal fee will be due at the beginning of each calendar year to cover that calendar year. ISBQPIP is a not-for-profit organization, that will publish a financial report every year. As a not-for-profit organisation, the renewal fee will be set to ensure that all running costs are covered without a significant surplus accruing. For 2021 the annual renewal fee is set on EURO 100. For candidates who successfully pass the exam in February 2021, the examination fee includes the QPIP registration fee for 2021.

What is done with the personal information that I provide?

See Privacy Notice (link at the bottom of each page in the black area)

Can I use the term QPIP and/or the logo?

The ISBQPIP has filed a trademark for both the QPIP logo and the term ‘QPIP’.  All QPIPs may use the term QPIP or Qualified Patent Information Professional in combination with their name (e.g. in their email signature, on LinkedIn etc.). Otherwise the term may only be used after written permission from the ISBQPIP has been obtained. The logo may only be used after written permission from the ISBQPIP has been obtained, but permission will not be withheld for use of the logo in combination with the name of the QPIP (e.g. in their email signature).

What are the tasks of the different ISBQPIP committees?

The major tasks of the committees are summarized below (for complete descriptions see the Articles and Rules):

Accreditation Committee: reviews applications for accreditation of training/course programs

Examination Committee: prepares the exam papers and reviews/marks the papers of the candidates (sub-groups may be formed to focus on specific aspects/technological areas of the exams)

Qualifications and Continued Professional Development Committee: reviews applications to enrol in the certification examination and reviews applications for Prior Experience Recognition. In addition, the committee will monitor developments in the profession to ensure that CPD requirements remain current. The committee will also assess activities to determine whether CPD points can be assigned, and if so, how many.

Regulatory and Disciplinary Committee: reviews complaints/appeals against acts/decisions of or within the ISBQPIP. In addition, the committee reviews complaints concerning alleged misconduct by a QPIP as well as assessing a QPIP's compliance or exemptions concerning the CPD requirements via a random audit.

The inaugural committee for each of these areas may need to develop procedures, forms and protocols in line with the Articles and Rules.

What is the time commitment involved in serving on an ISBQPIP committee?

Although the term of a committee member is typically three years, for the inaugural committees one member may step down (or be reappointed) after two years and one member should stay for at least four years to ensure continuity in the operation of the committee.

It is difficult to estimate how much work will be necessary to fulfil the different tasks of these committees. The amount of work will likely alternate between periods of more and less work at certain times throughout the calendar year. It is generally estimated that a committee member may spend anywhere from 3 hours to 10 hours per month or more depending on the circumstances.

It is likely that most of the tasks can be performed outside of business hours with perhaps the exception of any online communications (teleconferences or email correspondence) with other members of the committee that may need to be scheduled during business hours due to the availability of the committee members.

CPD

How should I record a "full day" meeting?

When you have attended a full day meeting, you should record the actual number of hours, counting the time spent on topics related to patent or industrial design information, not on administrative topics (e.g. minutes, elections, etc.) and not counting breaks.

For example, if the 'full day" meeting was from 9:30 until 17:00 and started with 0.5 hour welcome and registration, followed by 1 hour internal affairs (elections, finances etc.) and had two 0.5 hour coffee breaks and 1 hour lunchbreak, then the actual number of hours to be recorded as CPD activity is 7.5 - 0.5 - 1 - 2*0.5 - 1 = 4 hours

How should I record a multi-day event?

When you have attended a multi-day event, e.g. a conference or meeting, this should be recorded as one event, not each day separately. The total number of hours for this multi-day event should be recorded, counting the time spent on topics related to patent or industrial design information, not on administrative topics (e.g. minutes, elections, etc.) and not counting breaks.

Exam

What tools/databases should I use for the exam?

You should preferably use your own tools or databases, as long as they have an English interface. You may use any tools or databases with which you think you can successfully conduct the two search case studies (novelty/validy/opposition search and patent infringement risk search) and the patent landscaping case study. Since the patent landscaping case study requires analyses and visualisations, it is recommended to use at least one of the following tools:

  • Orbit.com — including the full Orbit Intelligence module
  • PatSnap — full access
  • PatSeer — Pro access with all analytics tools
  • PatBase — including Analytics v3
  • PatentSight — full access
  • Derwent Innovation — Analyst level

This list is not exclusive, so other tools to conduct the case study are also accepted. It is recommended to check the description of the patent landscaping case study on the Examination page.

In case you don't have access to any of these tools and/or databases/tools with an English interface for the two search case studies, please contact the ISBQPIP as soon as possible via info@qpip.org, in order to allow the ISBQPIP to arrange access.

What are the requirements for enrolment for the examination?

(i) You must meet minimum work experience requirements:

At the date of the certification examination, you must have at least three (3) years of work experience with at least 60% of that time spent on searching patent information or a combination of searching and mentoring or a combination of searching and outsourcing or a combination of searching and overseeing search work of others according to the definitions in Rule 4.2 in each and every year of the 3 year period preceding the date of application.

AND

(ii) At the time of applying for enrolment for the examination, you must have completed at least forty-five (45) search projects as defined in Rule 4.3 within the three (3) years preceding the application, the search projects being conducted in the course of business (not for personal interest). A single search project can include several individual searches that all aim to answer the question(s) posed by that search project.

AND

(iii) You must meet minimum technical qualifications such as a university degree or work experience in a scientific or technical field as defined in Rule 4.4.

AND

(iv) You must pay the application fee of EURO 100 which is non-refundable, after your application has been reviewed and you have been accepted for enrolment for the examination. Acceptable forms of payment will include bank transfer or credit card (Mastercard or VISA).

AND

(v) You must confirm that you will abide by the QPIP Code of Conduct.

The Rules and Code of Conduct can be downloaded from the Documentation page.

What technical qualitifications will be considered to be eligible for the exam?

At the time of applying for enrolment for the certification examination, the candidate must have:

  • At least a scientific, engineering or technical Bachelor Degree of three (3) year or four (4) year program duration in a technical field e.g. as included in any publicly available edition of the patent classification system that is administered by the World Intellectual Property Office, the European Patent Office, the United States Patent and Trademark Office, the Japan Patent Office or any other national patent office; or
  • At least a technical qualification in a technical field e.g. as included in any edition of any patent classification system as defined in RULE 4.4a wherein the technical qualification was conferred by a university, technical university, technical high school, vocational college, higher technical college or institute, school of engineering, or any similar establishment and the qualification is deemed equivalent to a Bachelor Degree by the Netherlands Organisation for International Cooperation in Higher Education; or
  • At least ten (10) years of experience working in a technical field as included in any edition of any patent classification system as defined in the first bullet point (RULE 4.4a).
Can anyone apply for enrolment for the exam?

Anyone fulfilling the requirements from anywhere in the world can register for the exam. That is why 5 different time zones have been set up and are available to sit the exam.


 

What is the examination fee?

The examination application fee is EURO 100 which is non-refundable. Acceptable forms of payment will include bank transfer or credit card (Mastercard or VISA). The examination application fee covers the QPIP registration fee for 2021.

What were the questions and answers during the information sessions on 16 December 2020?

You can find a document with a summary of the questions and answers of the information sessions on 16 December 2020 on the Documentation page under 'Examination', together with the slides that were shown and a recording of the presentation. The document is called 'Q&A summary Information Session 2020-12-16

Is it a possible to get a password to any commercial vendor during an exam?

Yes, this can be arranged. However, the ISBQPIP needs to be informed as soon as possible (at least two weeks before the exam) of your wish in order to be able to coordinate with vendors properly.

PER

What are the requirements for becoming a QPIP via PER?

(i) You must meet minimum work experience requirements:

At the time of applying for PER, you must have at least ten (10) years of work experience with at least 60% of that time spent on searching patent information or a combination of searching and mentoring or a combination of searching and outsourcing or a combination of searching and overseeing search work of others according to the definitions in Rule 4.2 in each and every year of the 10 year period preceding the date of application.

AND

(ii) You must meet minimum technical qualifications such as a university degree or work experience in a scientific or technical field as defined in Rule 18.3e.

AND

(iii) At the time of applying for PER, you must have completed a minimum of five (5) Continued Professional Development (CPD) points as defined in Rule 23.7 which must be accumulated in the twelve (12) months prior to applying for PER status.

AND

(iv) Pay the application fee of EURO 175 which is non-refundable. Acceptable forms of payment will include bank transfer or credit card (Mastercard or VISA).

AND

(v) As a PER applicant, you must confirm that you will be willing to serve on an ISBQPIP committee if requested by the ISBQPIP or to participate in developing accredited training or courses related to the core competencies of the certification examination as defined in Rule 18.3b, or attending and evaluating public training courses. For further details, see Rule 18.3a.

AND

(vi) As a PER applicant, you must confirm that you will either teach or otherwise exchange knowledge by teaching or developing a course or attending one or more courses directed to each of the three core competencies of the certification examination as defined in Rule 18.3b at some point during the three years from the date you are registered as a QPIP.

AND

(vii) As a PER applicant, you must confirm that you will abide by the Code of Conduct.

I reside in China, India, Japan, South Korea or the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, when can I apply for PER?

An opportunity will become available after the applications from the second PER window have been reviewed. Due to capacity issues, the PER window will be opened in stages for different regions of the world.

I am a patent examiner at a patent office. Can I apply for PER?

Yes, you can if you meet the requirements of Rule 18.3. There is no requirement for PER regarding the type of search projects that should have been conducted in the past ten years, so it is also accepted if you have done only patentability searches.

Where do I send my PER application to?

The completed form and all of the supporting documentation must be submitted electronically in legible PDF format by attaching the documents to an email correspondence to be sent to per@qpip.org .

Can I apply for PER if I have worked 6 years 100%?

Unfortunately the line has to be drawn somewhere. The requirement is 10 years of patent search-related work experience during which a minimum of 60% of the time was spent on searching patent information, mentoring, outsourcing or overseeing search work of others IN EACH AND EVERY YEAR OF THE 10 YEAR PERIOD preceding the date of application. Irrespective of whether the PER applicant has worked full-time or part-time, the applicant needs to be able to show that (s)he has 10 years of patent search-related work experience. Patent search-related work includes searching patent information, mentoring, outsourcing or overseeing the search work of others. Please refer to Rule 4.2 for further details about these patent search-related activities and Rule 4.3 for details about the different type of patent-related search projects.

If you would still like to be considered for PER, please include details about any special experiences or skills with which you can contribute to the activities of the ISBQPIP committees that should be taken into consideration when reviewing your application. This information may assist in deciding your eligibility for PER status.

What is the PER application fee?

The PER application fee is EURO 175 which is non-refundable. Acceptable forms of payment will include bank transfer or credit card (Mastercard or VISA). The PER application fee covers the QPIP registration fee for 2020.