HOW TO PREPARE YOUR CV
Preparing your own Curriculum Vitae can seem a daunting task.
By following the below guidelines you can prepare a professional document which shows you how to pitch your skills and stand out from the crowd. For post graduate and research applicants a CV is an important document to be submitted with your application.
PRESENTATION AND LAYOUT
- Always ensure that your CV is printed on white, good quality paper, and don’t go smaller than 12 point.
- The use of sub-headings (e.g. Personal details, career history, etc.) will help potential employers glean the information they require with ease.
- There should be clear spaces between category headings for easy clarification and definition.
- Your name, address and phone number(s) should form the start of the document.
- Commencing with your present or most recent employer, state your career history. Then list your professional qualifications. If you have been working for many years list your academic qualifications and a very brief mention as to your college or schooling.
- If you are just commencing your working life, having previously been a student, provide more in depth knowledge regarding your academic achievements to date.
EDUCATION AND QUALIFICATION
Mention all your education qualifications stating the degree name, name of institution, awarding body, year of study with start and end years and grades if good.
EMPLOYMENT AND INTERNSHIP
Starting with your most recent employment or internship provide details of your position as follows:
- Job title
- The key tasks and responsibilities
- Where possible quantify your achievements with precise facts and figures
- Expand on the skills you are using in your current job which you believe will be valuable in the position for which you are applying
INTERESTS AND ACHIEVEMENTS
- Keep this section short and to the point.
- Bullets can be used to separate interests into different types
- Show a range of interests
- Hobbies that are a little out of the ordinary can help you to stand out from the crowd: skydiving or mountaineering can show a sense of wanting to stretch yourself and an ability to rely on yourself in demanding situations
- Any interests relevant to the job are worth mentioning
- Any evidence of leadership is important to mention: captain or coach of a sports team, course representative, chair of a student society
- Anything showing evidence of employability skills such as team working, organising, planning, persuading, negotiating etc.
- Normally two referees are sufficient: one academic and one from an employer
- The order and the emphasis of references will depend on what you are applying for and what you have to offer.
GENERAL TIPS TO GET YOU STARTED TO WRITE A CV
- Follow a reverse chronological order in your CV.
- Add all your key accomplishments and activities in the CV.
- The language of a CV should be succinct.
- When applying for a job or some other type of position, you will want to include an appropriate cover letter with your CV to explain your particular qualifications and strengths for the position.
How long should a CV be?
There are no absolute rules but, in general, a new graduate’s CV should cover no more than two sides of A4 paper.