How to Apply

Application Information

The Master of Science in Patent Law degree program is a professional master’s degree for scientists and engineers interested in pursuing a career in the field of patent law.

Students may enroll either on a full-time or part-time basis. Those enrolled in the full-time program earn their master’s degree in one year. The part-time option puts students on track to receive their degree in as little as two years. However, students may elect to take up to three years to complete the degree requirements. 

Full-time and part-time applications are now being accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis. All students are automatically considered for scholarships at the time of application.

Qualified U.S. and international students are encouraged to apply.

Application Requirements

  1. Register and Create an Application

    • The application process is online, and all application materials must be submitted electronically through the UMN Online Application System. Please refer to the Masters of Science in Patent Law Application Instructions.

    • Do not submit paper copies of your application materials. All application materials must be submitted electronically. Failure to follow these instructions may result in delays and/or rejection of your applications. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

    • If you have questions about the application instructions, contact or call 612-625-2362.

  2. Personal Statement

    • Provide a personal statement (1-3 pages, double spaced) articulating the reason(s) you are interested in the field of patent law and why you are an ideal candidate for this program.

  3. Resume

    • Include a resume (1-2 pages) outlining relevant coursework and professional experience.

  4. Letter(s) of Recommendation

    • Submit at least one letter of recommendation. If you are currently in school, it is recommended that this letter be from someone who can attest to your ability to succeed in this competitive professional program. If you have been out of school for two or more years, the recommender may be from either your employer, or another career professional that can attest to your abilities. Only three letters of reference will be considered in your application.

  5. Transcripts

    • Transcripts from each college or university you have attended are required. Unofficial transcripts must be submitted electronically with your application. Official transcripts, submitted directly by institutions attended, will be required upon acceptance into the program.

  6. Standardized Test Scores

    • Standardized tests are not required, but you may optionally include a score (e.g., GRE, GMAT, LSAT) with your application if you would like it considered.

  7. Completed Patent Bar Eligibility Assessment Form

    • Students interested in the Master of Science in Patent Law program will likely want to sit for the patent bar exam after the program's conclusion. In order to take the patent bar exam, students must meet the eligibility requirements set forth by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). You are solely responsible for reviewing the USPTO eligibility requirements and determining whether you will be eligible to sit for the Patent Bar upon completion of the M.S. in Patent Law Program. The requirements are described in the General Requirements Bulletin.

    • International students must also meet the requirements of 37 CFR 11.6(c).

    • Applicants who are not patent bar eligible may still apply but must show that they will be patent bar eligible upon completion of the program or that they do not intend to practice before the USPTO. Students may have the option of taking technical courses as part of the program if needed to meet eligibility requirements.

  8. TOEFL Score (if applicable)

    • ​​​​​​​Applicants whose native language is not English must provide TOEFL scores. This requirement is waived if you have an undergraduate or graduate degree from an accredited U.S. institution. Unofficial scores may be submitted for application purposes, but official scores are required upon acceptance into the program.

  9. Application Fee

    • ​​​​​​​A non-refundable application fee is required for your application to be complete. The fee is $75 for domestic applications and $95 for international applications.

Acceptance Criteria

This program prepares students for a career in the field of patent law. Candidates will be evaluated based upon a number of factors, including: technical background, professional experience, writing ability, patent bar eligibility, references and academic success.

Tuition and Scholarship Information

Tuition is equivalent to tuition in the J.D. program. Included with tuition will be a five-day patent bar exam preparation course. Tuition does not include University and Law School fees, health insurance, books and supplies, or living expenses.

Scholarships are available and will be awarded automatically to qualified candidates. No separate application is required in order to receive a scholarship.


Please send any questions or status inquiries to or call 612-625-2362.


As required by Title IX, the University does not discriminate on the basis of sex in any of its education programs or activities, including in admissions and employment. Inquiries about the application of Title IX can be directed to the University’s Title IX Coordinators or to the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights. Please see the University of Minnesota’s Title IX Statement and the University’s policy for information about: (1) how to contact the Title IX Coordinators on the University’s campuses; (2) how to report or file a formal complaint of sexual harassment, gender-based harassment, sexual assault, stalking or relationship violence; and (3) the University’s procedures for responding to reports and formal complaints.