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Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship
Fall 2000

[Board 
accepted]

The Life in Inventions: Patents as Sources of Biological Information

Gary Mason Church
Assistant Professor
Life Sciences Librarian
Texas A&M University Libraries
gmc@tamu.edu

Brian B. Carpenter
Associate Professor
Patent and Trademark Reference Librarian
Texas A&M University Libraries
bcarpent@lib-gw.tamu.edu

Abstract

Scientific conference papers have traditionally been a relatively quick and important source of information for the biologist. These papers are also a vital part of the scientific process and a way to spread, evaluate, and refine scientific knowledge. Information from conference papers can be supplemented with information from patents. Patent information comprises an important part of the biological literature, especially that dealing with biotechnology and genomics. For a variety of reasons, however, biologists do not generally consult information in patents relevant to their interests.

The purpose of this article is to suggest a method to increase biologists' awareness and use of patents. In general, the method introduces patents to undergraduate biology students. Our primary goal is to teach students how to understand patents and obtain useful information from them that enhances or broadens their knowledge of and education in science. Instructional objectives pertain to background information about patents, the primary kinds of patents, the purpose of patents, the main components of patents, and how to compare these components with those of scientific conference papers. Instruction is based upon models designed by Robert Gagné (1965, 1985) and Madeline Hunter (1982). We also include review questions that will cover the instructional objectives.

Literature Review

We reviewed the biological and educational literature for articles on two basic topics: (1) teaching students about patents as a source of biological information and (2) comparing the structure of a patent to that of a scientific conference paper. Sources reviewed included Biological and Agricultural Index, BIOSIS, ERIC, specific Wilson databases (e.g., Applied Science and Technology Abstracts, Education Abstracts, General Science Abstracts, Humanities Abstracts, OmniFile, and Social Sciences Abstracts), and the Journal of Biological Education. We did not find articles that specifically dealt with either topic. Instead, we found articles about such topics as patent principles and practice, the requirements for getting a patent, the conditions under which an invention is patentable, the use of patent information, general information about patents, the relationships and interactions between academia and industry regarding patents, library and information science courses that cover information on patents, an educators' guide to the use of patents, and the use of patents to teach how to write technical descriptions. However, the article by Anderson (1992) titled "Hidden Treasures for Science Teaching: United States Patents" relates somewhat to topic 1. He uses patents to teach the history of science in such areas as communication, transportation, and agricultural machinery, as well as the interaction between technology, science, and society. He also suggests using patents to make bulletin board displays and overhead transparencies and to stimulate creative thinking and teach problem-solving skills.

Statement of the Problem

Many patents are granted in fields related to biology, especially biotechnology. These patents cover such things as genes, drugs, artificial organs, genetic engineering, plant and animal clones, new varieties of plants and animals, and pest- and disease-resistant crops. Information in these patents may be published only in the patent literature or may be published in the patent literature before publication in such traditional components of the biological literature as journals or conference proceedings. However, the patent literature is usually not studied by undergraduate or graduate biology students and so does not become a part of their science education. The reasons for this include a lack of knowledge about how to locate, read, and understand patents, their structure, and contents. Consequently, a student's science education can be enhanced if this lack of knowledge is minimized through an instructional program that familiarizes students with the language, content, and structure of patents as well as how to search for patents. This program includes a comparison of the structure of a patent and a conference paper as a way to introduce them to patents through media with which they are familiar.

Objectives

Our primary goal is to teach students how to understand patents and obtain useful information from them that broadens their scientific knowledge and education. To accomplish this, the objectives of our project are to

As a result of our instruction, students should be able to

Methodology

Except for Anderson's (1992) slightly related article, our review of the biological and educational literature did not reveal articles that would guide us in a detailed design of our undergraduate instructional program and materials. However, we did note a relevant quote by Schwartz (1976) that "every student who will graduate with a bachelor's degree in chemistry should at least study the structure of one original patent and analyze it from the viewpoint of good practice."

Our approach was to first search for and select a patent and a conference paper by the same author on similar topics. The author is Kalidas Shetty, and his patent (1999) and conference paper (1997) both deal with plant tissue culture. Next we produced a set of overheads to (a) illustrate the parts of Shetty's patent, (b) compare these parts to their counterparts in his conference paper, and (c) point out major differences between patents and conference papers.

To teach these concepts, we drafted an instructional strategy based on work by Robert Gagné (1965, 1985) and Madeline Hunter (1982). We also developed review exercises to accompany the overheads. We will tentatively aim the patent instruction at Texas A&M students in Biology 413, Cell Biology. We chose this class because it (1) requires students to use the biological literature and (2) reviews recent developments in cell and molecular biology that could include biotechnology patents.

Because we can more effectively distribute our instruction via the World Wide Web than with overheads, we digitally formatted the overheads and linked them to Texas A&M University's intellectual property web site. We also added to the instructional materials a survey that Biology 413 faculty members will be asked to complete that will evaluate the materials for possible subsequent modification.

Gagné's and Hunter's Instructional Models

The basic outline we will follow as we teach students about patents and conference papers is based upon the work of Gagné (1965, 1985) and Hunter (1982). Both of these educators propose somewhat similar steps to follow during the teaching process. These steps serve as a model for instructional design and relate to stages or mental events of the learning process and learning theory. For example, the learning process consists of such learner mental events as attention, perception, acquisition, retention, and transfer. Gagné's (1965, 1985) nine steps are given below, followed by Hunter's (1982).

Gagné's steps:

  1. Gain learner's attention. Learner receives patterns of neural impulses.
  2. Inform learner of lesson objective(s). Learner experiences executive control.
  3. Stimulate recall of prerequisite learning. Learner retrieves prior learning into working memory.
  4. Present the stimulus (instructional) material. Learner selectively perceives emphasized features.
  5. Guide learning. Semantic encoding occurs, and learner receives cues for retrieval.
  6. Elicit learner's performance. Response organization is activated.
  7. Provide feedback to learner about performance. Learning is reinforced.
  8. Assess learner's performance. Retrieval is activated; reinforcement is made possible.
  9. Enhance learner's retention and transfer of instructional material. Cues and methods of retrieval are given.

Hunter's steps:

  1. Present anticipatory set (also known as Focus or Hook). Grabs student's attention.
  2. Present objective(s) to student. Student becomes aware of what will be learned and learns more effectively.
  3. Inform student of expectations and standards. Student becomes aware of what is expected of him/her and learns more effectively.
  4. Teach instructional material (includes Input, Modeling, and Checking for Understanding). Student selectively perceives emphasized features and is taken to the application phase of learning.
  5. Guide student practice of instructional material and monitor student learning. Student demonstrates understanding of instructional material under teacher's guidance.
  6. Re-teach concepts student has not learned. Helps student learn what s/he could not successfully demonstrate during guided practice.
  7. Closure (concluding review of instructional material). Reinforces main points and helps student organize and clarify what has been taught.
  8. Provide independent practice. Reinforces main points and gives student opportunity to apply or transfer new knowledge to other contexts.

Instructional Materials: Teacher's Notes

Reading a Patent

FOCUS:

Patents are granted for unique and novel inventions. They can be weird (e.g., Electrified Tablecloth, patent #5,107,620), practical (e.g., Method for Testing the Freshness of Fish, patent #4,980, 294, that checks for the buildup of trimethylamine), or useful (e.g., Whole Poultry Egg Analogue Composition and Method, patent #5,192,566). In some cases, inventions can be so practical you may not realize they are patented (colleague pops the top on a soda can as an attention-grabbing visual to get the students' attention). (Copies of front pages of these patents would be included in the Biotech Patent web site.)

OBJECTIVES:

At the end of this instruction, students will be able to:

  • Identify the parts of a patent
  • Identify the parts of a conference paper
  • Name equivalent or analogous parts of a patent and a conference paper
  • Compare and contrast patents and conference papers
  • Recognize patents as a primary literature source and the importance of patents to those working in biology

PRIOR KNOWLEDGE:

Students should be at least somewhat familiar with the purpose and parts of scientific conference papers.

INSTRUCTION (TEACHING POINTS):

Define pertinent terms and phrases (e.g., art, state of the art, speculative material).

Review with students that the purpose of a scientific conference paper is to make scientists aware of new information added to the body of scientific knowledge. Conference papers may do this more quickly than journal articles.

Explain to students that the purpose of a patent is to grant temporary exclusive rights in return for making an invention public. With a patent, an inventor "stakes a claim" to their invention and intellectual property. Patents are often the end result of industrial research and must be understandable to persons skilled in the art. Patents are particularly important to such commercial and industrial areas of biology as biotechnology.

Explain the speculative material in patents.

Make students aware of the parts of a patent and their purpose. Some important parts are listed below. Emphasize similarities and differences between the parts of scientific conference papers and those of patents.

  1. PATENT NUMBER. A unique identifying number given to each invention receiving patent protection. NOTE: The numbers in brackets before each item are international codes that identify each piece of information so that it is recognizable regardless of the language used. This is especially helpful for locating international counterparts of a given patent.

  2. TITLE. The proper name given to the invention.

  3. INVENTOR. The main person credited with the conception of the invention. All United States patents must be assigned to individuals (the inventor) who are often assignors to their companies (the assignee).

  4. CLASSIFICATION INFORMATION. The International and U.S. classifications used to classify an invention. The "Field of Search" refers to the different classifications searched when trying to identify the main classification of an invention.

  5. REFERENCES CITED. Similar inventions that were reviewed during the patent search process. Listed references are cited by the patent examiner as showing the state of the art up to the time of the patent under review.

  6. ABSTRACT. A brief overview description of the patented invention. Unlike their conference paper counterparts, abstracts in patents may be uninformative or incomplete. They are for information only and are not part of the disclosure. For this reason they are not the best starting point for reviewing a patent. The abstract completes the first page of a patent.

  7. DRAWINGS. Drawings appear on the pages that immediately follow the abstract. Examples of drawings include diagrams, graphical data, flow diagrams, charts, and drawings of molecules.

  8. EXAMPLES. Examples show how the invention works. Because the patent disclosures are broadened to include all reasonable applications of the invention, it is possible to disclose inoperable ways to practice the invention. Extending the disclosure beyond actual experimental work is another big difference between patents and scientific conference papers. The best way to practice the invention is not always highlighted. See pp. 7-14 of the Shetty patent for its examples. The first example, the Selection of Pseudomonas-Tolerant Thyme (Thymus vulgaris L.) on p. 7, concerns this plant and why it was chosen as the basis for Shetty's invention.

  9. CLAIMS. Claims are the most important part of the patent because they identify the features of the invention that make it patentable. Because of this, it makes sense to approach a patent in a manner that is reversed from the approach to a scientific conference paper. Experienced patent readers will read claims and examples first to get a feel for the breadth of the inventor's thinking. See p. 15 of Shetty's patent for its claims.

From Pages 4-15 of the Shetty patent:

Explain to students the format and additional parts of a patent. Include these points:

  • Patents do not have page numbers.
  • The type is double-columned.
  • Each column is numbered at the top, and every fifth line within each column is numbered. This numbering makes it easier to locate a section of the patent.
  • Illustrate the column and line numbers as you identify the parts of a disclosure.
  • Emphasize the relationship of these parts to those of a scientific conference paper.

Patents also contain parts in addition to the nine listed previously. The handout provided for students uses the following colors to indicate the corresponding parts of a patent:

  • Purple: Field of the Invention.
  • Blue: Background of the Invention/Statement of the Problem/Disclosure.
  • Pink: Definition.
  • Yellow: Object of the Invention/Summary.
  • Green: Definition/Description in Detail.
  • Orange: Examples.
  • Red: Claims.

GUIDED PRACTICE

Guided practice is led by the instructor and consists of sample problems or exercises that give students an opportunity to apply key points of instruction and, thereby, work toward attaining the learning objectives. Here, guided practice could be a brief set of questions about the following instructional points:

  • The purpose of a patent and scientific conference paper.
  • The parts of a patent and conference paper.
  • Comparing the parts of a patent and conference paper.
  • The purpose or function of the parts of a patent and conference paper.

RE-TEACHING

Re-teaching is done if the instructor notices that students do not understand particular points of instruction. The instructor can evaluate understanding either during the instructional period (e.g., by puzzled facial expressions or incorrect answers to verbal questions) or during guided practice.

CLOSURE

Closure provides a concluding review of the instructional material. It reinforces main instructional points, organizes these points into a coherent whole, and helps students organize and clarify what they have learned and understand what has been taught.

INDEPENDENT PRACTICE

Independent practice consists of additional problems and exercises that reinforce the key points of instruction to achieve the learning objectives. It is designed to help students transfer and apply what has been learned to other contexts. This practice, however, occurs without help or guidance by the instructor. It may occur either in or out of class. The following exercises can serve as independent practice for students.

  1. How can patents be used to describe the state of the art for a specified research topic? Obtain the items listed in the References section of a given patent. Scan the patents listed for direct relevance. Then obtain the relevant patents listed in the reference sections of any additional patents. This works because each patent must list the applicable prior art.

  2. Some parts of a patent have equivalent counterparts in a scientific conference paper. List three such parts. Title, abstract, and references are the three most obvious.

  3. Which part of a patent is most similar to the author in a scientific conference paper: the inventor or the assignee? The inventor.

  4. Why are patents valuable sources for current awareness? Many technical advances are reported only in the patent literature.

  5. How does the purpose of a scientific conference paper differ from the purpose of a patent? Scientific research furthers the body of knowledge and is published in a variety of formats, including scientific conference papers. The main functions of scientific conference papers are author recognition, archival storage, current awareness, and quality control for the discipline covered. Industrial research is concerned with improving existing processes or products, or the implementation of new processes or products into the technology base. Patents are a forum for the results of industrial research. The main functions of patents are current awareness, archival storage for prior art, and legal documentation that recognizes the inventors' contribution(s) to technology and society.

  6. Patents contain speculative material. Explain why this is so, and comment on how this compares with the discussion of results and topics for further research found in scientific conference papers. Inventors do not want to limit an invention unnecessarily. However, in a conference paper, the discussion of results and topics for further research may actually expand a study, not limit it. The discussion of results might also help other scientists repeat the study to corroborate it.

  7. Think about the purpose and type of information given in a conference paper and in a patent. Is it advisable to limit your literature search to one or the other? Justify your answer. Accept all reasonable answers. Students should recognize that the extent of a literature search and how it is performed depends on the information sought. Patents cover invention and innovation; conference papers present new knowledge in general which could also be innovative. From the standpoint of current awareness or understanding the technical aspects of a field of study, both patents and conference papers should be consulted.

  8. Suppose that after reading a patent you are unable to reproduce the techniques described. Would this necessarily be grounds for contesting the validity of the patent? Explain. No. A patent must be understandable to someone skilled in the art. Accept all reasonable answers.

  9. Obtain a patent that has been abstracted or indexed in one of the biological indexes or electronic databases. Review the patent and supply the following information.
    1. Patent title, Accession or Patent Number, Name(s) of the inventor(s) and assignee(s), Patent Number, and Date the patent was issued.
    2. Briefly and clearly state what the invention is. Briefly summarize the specification of the patent. Clearly identify what is useful and new in the invention.
    3. Classify the invention as composition of matter, improvement, process, machine, or a combination of these.
    Accept all reasonable answers. Check that the responses are in line with the patent chosen.

Instructional Materials: Student Handout

Reading a Patent

FOCUS: PATENTS

Weird or unusual: Electrified Tablecloth (#5,107,620)

Practical: Method for Testing the Freshness of Fish (#4,980, 294) that checks for the buildup of trimethylamine.

Useful: Whole Poultry Egg Analogue Composition and Method (#5,192,566).

OBJECTIVES:

At the end of this instruction, you will be able to:

  • Identify the parts of a patent
  • Identify the parts of a conference paper
  • Name equivalent or analogous parts of a patent and a conference paper
  • Compare and contrast patents and conference papers
  • Recognize patents as a primary literature source and the importance of patents to those working in biology

PRIOR KNOWLEDGE:

You should be at least somewhat familiar with the purpose and parts of scientific conference papers.

INSTRUCTION:

The purpose of a scientific conference paper is to make scientists aware of new information added to the body of scientific knowledge. Conference papers may do this more quickly than journal articles.

The purpose of a patent is to grant temporary exclusive rights in return for making an invention public. With a patent, an inventor "stakes a claim" to their invention and intellectual property. Patents are often the end result of industrial research and must be understandable to persons skilled in the art. Patents are particularly important to such commercial and industrial areas of biology as biotechnology.

Here are some important parts of a patent and their purpose. Look for similarities and differences between the parts of scientific conference papers and those of patents.

  1. PATENT NUMBER. A unique identifying number given to each invention receiving patent protection. NOTE: The numbers in brackets before each item are international codes that identify each piece of information so that it is recognizable regardless of the language used. This is especially helpful for locating international counterparts of a given patent.

  2. TITLE. The proper name given to the invention.

  3. INVENTOR. The main person credited with the conception of the invention. All United States patents must be assigned to individuals (the inventor) who are often assignors to their companies (the assignee).

  4. CLASSIFICATION INFORMATION. The International and U.S. classifications used to classify an invention. The "Field of Search" refers to the different classifications searched when trying to identify the main classification of an invention.

  5. REFERENCES CITED. Similar inventions that were reviewed during the patent-search process. Listed references are cited by the patent examiner as showing the state of the art up to the time of the patent under review.

  6. ABSTRACT. A brief overview description of the patented invention. Unlike their conference paper counterparts, abstracts in patents may be uninformative or incomplete. They are for information only and are not part of the disclosure. For this reason they are not the best starting point for reviewing a patent. The abstract completes the first page of a patent.

  7. DRAWINGS. Drawings appear on the pages that immediately follow the abstract. Examples of drawings include diagrams, graphical data, flow diagrams, charts, and drawings of molecules.

  8. EXAMPLES. Examples show how the invention works. Because the patent disclosures are broadened to include all reasonable applications of the invention, it is possible to disclose inoperable ways to practice the invention. Extending the disclosure beyond actual experimental work is another big difference between patents and scientific conference papers. The best way to practice the invention is not always highlighted. See pp. 7-14 of the Shetty patent for its examples. The first example, the Selection of Pseudomonas-Tolerant Thyme (Thymus vulgaris L.) on p. 7, concerns this plant and why it was chosen as the basis for Shetty's invention.

  9. CLAIMS. Claims are the most important part of the patent because they identify the features of the invention that make it patentable. Because of this, it makes sense to approach a patent in a manner that is reversed from the approach to a scientific conference paper. Experienced patent readers will read claims and examples first to get a feel for the breadth of the inventor's thinking. See p. 15 of Shetty's patent for its claims.

From Pages 4-15 of the Shetty Patent:

Here are some important points to remember about the format and additional parts of a patent:

  • Patents do not have page numbers.
  • The type is double-columned.
  • Each column is numbered at the top, and every fifth line within each column is numbered. This numbering makes it easier to locate a section of the patent.
  • See if you can locate the column and line numbers as you identify the parts of a disclosure.
  • Patents and scientific conference papers have analogous parts.
Patents also contain parts in addition to the nine listed previously. The handout provided to you uses the following colors to indicate the corresponding parts of a patent:

  • Purple: Field of the Invention.
  • Blue: Background of the Invention/Statement of the Problem/Disclosure.
  • Pink: Definition.
  • Yellow: Objects of the Invention/Summary.
  • Green: Definition/Description in Detail.
  • Orange: Examples.
  • Red: Claims.

PURPLE: Field of the Invention.
(Column 1, line 1 to Column 1, line 10)

While the patent explicitly states the field of interest, the scientific conference paper implies it by the book in which it appears.

BLUE: Background of the Invention/Statement of the Problem/Disclosure.
(Column 1, line 12 to Column 1, line 67)

This is the background information. It is a discussion of earlier methods and practical difficulties involved with the invention. The introduction of a scientific conference paper is comparable to the statement of the problem in the patent.

PINK: Definition.
(Column 2, line 1 to Column 3, line 11)

The definition describes the solution to the problem and is the heart of the patent. This is where the purpose of the patent is found. Many United States patents highlight the definition by titling this section Summary of the Invention. If this heading is not used, the reader can look for key phrases such as "the invention comprises," "in accordance with the present invention," or "my invention is characterized...." Here, the key phrase is "...the present invention..." If explicitly stated, the purpose of a scientific conference paper is found toward the end of the introduction.

YELLOW: Objects of the Invention/Summary.
(Column 3, line 12 to Column 3, line 31)

The objects of the invention are the benefits it provides. Sometimes scientific conference papers will list or discuss applications of the research presented or explain why the research is important to the scientific community.

GREEN: Definition/Description in Detail.
(Column 3, line 56 to Column 6, line 67)

This section gives the detailed elaboration of terms and limits summarized in the definition. Some technical terms now considered common were coined in patents (e.g., isotactic, atactic and syndiotactic). The biggest difference between patents and conference papers is the level of detail. The presence of excessive detail can cause a loss of patience when reading through the patent for experimental information. Unlike a scientific conference paper, a patent generally avoids detailed discussions about reaction mechanisms or why the invention is not effective. This is done so that interpretation does not limit the scope of the claims or make the invention seem obvious from theory. Along with the examples, this section is roughly equivalent to the experimental section of a scientific conference paper.

ORANGE: Examples.
(Column 7, line 60 to Column 22, line 63)

Examples show how the invention works. Because the patent disclosures are broadened to include all reasonable applications of the invention, it is possible to disclose inoperable ways to practice the invention. Extending the disclosure beyond actual experimental work is another big difference between patents and scientific conference papers. The best way to practice the invention is not always highlighted.

RED: Claims.
(Column 23, line 6 to Column 24, line 37)

Claims are the most important part of the patent because they identify the features of the invention that make it patentable. Because of this, it makes sense to approach a patent in a manner that is reversed from the approach to a scientific conference paper. Experienced patent readers will read claims and examples first to get a feel for the breadth of the inventor's thinking.

GUIDED PRACTICE

This section consists of sample problems or exercises that give you an opportunity to apply key points of instruction and, thereby, work toward attaining the learning objectives. See if you could do the following:

  • Explain the purpose of a patent and scientific conference paper.
  • Name the parts of a patent and conference paper.
  • Compare the parts of a patent and conference paper.
  • Explain the purpose or function of the parts of a patent and conference paper.

If there is anything about the above four points you do not understand, please ask for clarification.

INDEPENDENT PRACTICE

This section consists of additional practice problems or exercises that reinforce key points of instruction to help you learn them better. This practice, however, occurs without help or guidance by the instructor. Answer the following questions using what you have learned about patents and scientific conference papers.

  1. How can patents be used to describe the state of the art for a specified research topic?

  2. Some parts of a patent have equivalent counterparts in a scientific conference paper. List three such parts.

  3. Which is most similar to the author in a scientific conference paper: the inventor or the assignee?

  4. Why are patents valuable sources for current awareness?

  5. How does the purpose of a scientific conference paper differ from the purpose of a patent?

  6. Patents contain speculative material. Explain why this is so, and comment on how this compares with the discussion of results and topics for further research found in scientific conference papers.

  7. Think about the purpose and type of information given in a conference paper and in a patent. Is it advisable to limit your literature search to one or the other? Justify your answer.

  8. Suppose that after reading a patent you are unable to reproduce the techniques described. Would this necessarily be grounds for contesting the validity of the patent? Explain.

  9. Obtain a patent that has been abstracted or indexed in one of the biological indexes or electronic databases. Review the patent and supply the following information.

    1. Patent title, Accession or Patent Number, Name(s) of the inventor(s) and assignee(s), Patent Number, and Date the patent was issued.
    2. Briefly and clearly state what the invention is. Briefly summarize the specification of the patent. Clearly identify what is useful and new in the invention.
    3. Classify the invention as composition of matter, improvement, process, machine, or a combination of these.

Discussion

We prepared our educational program under the assumption that instructors and students have little or no knowledge of patents. Therefore, the program sought to identify parts of a biological patent and to provide comparisons of these parts with the sections of a scientific conference paper. We expect that instructors will download the web-based images and instructional strategy and modify them to use in their respective classes. Review exercises could be done during class or as an out-of-class assignment. Instructors will complete and submit evaluation surveys either via the web or campus mail.

Although we prepared the instructional aids with biologists in mind, they could be adapted easily to use in any courses that expose students to the biological literature. One way to accomplish this would be to change the Shetty (1999) sample patent to one related to the subject matter of the course. Some of the exercises could also be made more generic. For example, the patent reference in exercise 9 could be replaced with an invitation to locate a patent in which the student is interested.

Conclusion

We are just now beginning to implement the instructional program with which we will help students understand and use patents to supplement the biological literature and broaden their scientific knowledge. Initial contacts with Texas A&M biology department faculty about this program have been very positive, appreciative, and encouraging. When we asked the faculty if any of them already used information from patents or would be interested in doing so, we received such comments as "I would be really interested in accessing the patent information" and "It would indeed be helpful to have access to patent literature. For several of our plant biotech-related projects, we develop patents, and access to patent materials (especially U.S. and European) would be most helpful."

We will next provide biology faculty members the opportunity to review and provide feedback about our instructional materials. Then, we will meet with faculty to plan to implement the program into Biology 413 starting in the fall 2000 semester if possible. We will evaluate the program each semester using the evaluation survey mentioned in the Methodology. We also plan to determine how this strategy for reducing unfamiliarity with patent literature compares with biology-related programs in other institutions.

References

Anderson, N.D. 1992. Hidden Treasures for Science Teaching: United States Patents. EDRS, ERIC Document 349162.

Cox, J.P. & Cox, J.M. 1993. Whole Poultry Egg Analogue Composition and Method. United States Patent 5,192,566. 9 March.

Elias, L. & Krzymien, M.E. 1990. Method for Testing the Freshness of Fish. United States Patent 4,980,294. 25 December.

Gagné, R.M. 1965. The Conditions of Learning. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.

Gagné, R.M. 1985. The Conditions of Learning and Theory of Instruction. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston.

Hunter, M. 1982. Mastery Teaching: Increasing Instructional Effectiveness in Elementary, Secondary Schools, Colleges and Universities. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Mahan, R.E. 1992. Electrified Table Cloth. United States Patent 5,107,620. 28 April.

McKevitt, I. 1992. Patent information in the library/information studies curriculum. Education for Information 10(3):223-236.

Norman, R. 1989. Patent writing as a heuristic for teaching. Journal of Business & Technical Communication 3(2):64-77.

Prostano, E.T. & Prostano, J.S. 1989. Educators Guide to Patents. ERIC Document 318653.

Schwartz, J.H. 1976. What has been published? - more patents than journal literature. Journal of Chemical Education 53(1):57.

Shetty, K. 1997. Tissue culture-based selection of high rosmarinic acid producing clones of rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.) using Pseudomonas strain F. Food Biotechnology 11(1):73-88.

Shetty, K. 1999. Plant Clones Containing Elevated Secondary Metabolite Levels. United States Patent 5,869,340. 9 February.

Whittemore, O.J. 1981. Patents: a tool for teaching design. Engineering Education 71(4): 299-301.

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