Intellectual Property: A Students’ Guide

A students’ guide to intellectual property and where to go for advice, information and support

What is IP?

Intellectual Property (IP) is a term used to describe an individualā€™s creative output such as an invention.Ā  Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) such as trademarks, patents, copyright and design rights are the legal means that can be used to prevent others from using your creative output without your consent.

The UK Government’sĀ Intellectual Property OfficeĀ has created aĀ short online courseĀ on IP & IPR for students who want to learn more.Ā 

Contacts for advice

The Collegeā€™s IP Team can provide advice onĀ Imperialā€™s IP policy.

The Business School also have expertise inĀ how IP is managed in business and industry.

Student IP ownership

There is a specificĀ guidance about student generated IPĀ at Imperial College London.

Students are typically issued an IP ā€˜clearance letterā€™ from Imperial after submitting a Student IP Due Diligence form (signed by their supervisor) to theĀ Research Office.

The College providesĀ general advice and guidanceĀ for College inventors.

Keeping things confidential

Before disclosing details about your new ideas, publishing information or filing a patent, it is sometimes useful to propose a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) to those you are engaging with, or at least being careful to share only details that will not put your IP at risk.Ā  The UK Intellectual Property Office providesĀ free NDA templates.

Managing the costs

A good IP strategy can make effective use of confidentiality, trademarks, patents, copyright or design rights, but you should carefully consider the costs, benefits and timing of your approach.

Here are some examples of useful guides, but always seek independent professional advice for your particular case and circumstances:

Video:Ā Protecting your idea in the UK

Information Sheets:Ā The Cost of a Patent

Please note: The College is not responsible for the availability of external sites or resources, does not endorse and is not responsible or liable for any content available from such sites or resource