Preparing Curriculum Vitae

Special thanks to Professor Janet Farrell Brodie, CGU History, for the following information.

A CV differs from a resume in that it focuses on your academic record and achievements. It tends to be a bit longer than a resume and it may give more detail. For someone just finishing graduate school, a three page CV is an appropriate goal. It shows you have accomplished enough to fill some paper without going overboard with detail.


Putting Together an Effective CV


Be creative with your categories. There is no set format for a CV. This allows you to group things together to demonstrate your strengths. Categories you might consider include: education (this usually goes first), courses you are prepared to teach, teaching experience, research and publications, conference papers and presentations, professional activities and memberships, professional expertise, honors and awards, community service. (Try to think of as many types of teaching and administrative skills you can and then chose the categories that will work for you.)

As with your cover letter, you should arrange the categories on your CV so that the information most relevant to the job you are applying appears first. Do not make a search committee search through your CV to find out why you would be good for them. State the reasons up front.

Within each category you can list entries in chronological order starting with the most recent or you can list the most relevant information first. There is no need to focus on dates by placing them in the margin. You can include dates on the same line as an event. (e.g. Writing Consultant, Claremont Graduate University Writing Center, 1999-present)

"Objective" (or purpose) is not included on a CV. Resumes for nonacademic positions often begin with this category, which indicates an applicant’s immediate and/or long-term career objectives. Save your description of your goals for a sentence in your cover letter.

List your references at the end. Include their phone numbers and email addresses. It is good to show a breadth of connections because people in the academy tend to know one another. Remember that you can list professionals other than your professors, but unless there is an excellent reason to list someone outside of academia, stick with insiders.

As with resumes, omit personal information (age, gender, health, pictures, marital status, etc.) You will help the committee to hire the best person for the job by leaving off any information that could lead to overt or unconscious bias. Also do not indicate salary information.

Ask to see samples of recent hires and of colleagues. Have a variety of people proofread your CV.

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