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CPATA to Administer the New Qualifying Examinations for the First Time in 2024

CPATA will administer new qualifying examinations for the first time in 2024, starting with the Knowledge Examinations in March, followed by the new Skills Examinations in the fall. The new exams, created with significant contributions and input from licensees, bring important improvements to entry-to-practice which will ultimately improve the exam experience for patent agent and trademark agents in training and benefit Canadian consumers of IP services.  

When CPATA was created as the independent public interest regulator of patent agents and trademark agents, it assumed responsibility for setting and administering the qualifying examinations that are part of the entry-to-practice requirements for patent agents and trademark agents. At that point, entry-to-practice requirements, including the exams, had remained largely unchanged for many years, and concerns were raised by some within the IP community about this framework due to low pass rates.  

CPATA began a review based on the principles of transparency, fairness, defensibility, and ability to prepare agents in training for future practice. The review led to CPATA developing technical competency profiles for patent agents and trademark agents which set clear standards for the competencies and skills that patent agents and trademark agents must acquire to serve their IP clients. CPATA then began to review and redevelop the qualifying examinations so that starting in 2024 they test the technical knowledge and skills required for agents as established in the competency profiles.  

CPATA relied heavily on input from the profession in the process. CPATA is appreciative for the support of all licensees who will contribute to the qualifying examinations this year, including those who have assisted CPATA on exam development and administration to date and the over 65 positions which have now been filled on various working groups. 

CPATA’s focus on professional competency and entry-to-practice through initiatives such as the qualifying examination redevelopment is essential in building confidence in accessible, ethical and expert regulated intellectual property services in Canada. 

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