Outline to Use to Create a Resume
Not sure what to include on your resume? Before you start writing your resume, review an outline of what you will need to include.
A resume outline or template shows you all the information you need to put on your resume. It will help save you time when you write.
Read below for a resume outline that includes all the information you need to include in your resume.
Tips for Using a Resume Outline
A resume outline is a great starting point for your resume.
Before you write your resume, collect all the information you will need. Then fill in the outline with that information.
However, a resume outline is only a jumping-off point. You can, and should, make any changes to the resume outline that you want. You can reorder some of the elements of the resume outline. For example, if you are a current student, you might include your education information right after your resume summary statement, rather than towards the end of your resume.
You might also remove or add some information. For example, if you do not want to include a resume summary statement, but instead want to add a briefer resume branding statement, you can do so.
Finally, you can also change the style of the resume outline. For example, if the resume outline is in Arial font, and you want your resume to be in Times New Roman, you can change the font.
Make sure that your resume includes information specific to you, and is organized in a way that highlights your skills and qualifications.
Be sure to proofread your resume before submitting it.
The heading section of your resume should include your name, address, phone number, and email address (be sure to use a professional email address). It might also include the URL of your LinkedIn profile or personal website:
First Name Last Name
City, State, Zip
LinkedIn Profile URL (optional)
If you are concerned about privacy or are relocating, you may want to consider other options for including your physical address on your resume.
Branding Statement (optional)
A branding statement is a very brief (15 words or less) phrase that highlights your most relevant expertise and skills. If you choose to include a branding statement, you can elaborate on your skills and experiences in a resume summary statement just below it.
Resume Objective (optional)
A resume objective is a brief statement (a sentence or two) stating your employment goals. If you choose to include an objective on your resume, tailor it to match what the employer is seeking in the job posting you're applying for. However, many employers now prefer a resume summary statement rather than a resume objective.
Career Highlights/Profile/Summary Statement (optional)
A career highlights/qualifications section also called a resume profile or a resume summary statement, is an optional customized section of a resume that lists key achievements, skills, traits, and experience relevant to the job for which you are applying.
This section, if you use it, should be customized as well.
Include a list of the most recent companies you have worked for in the Experience section of your resume. If you have extensive work experience you don't need to include more than the last 10 - 15 years on your resume. Include the name of the company, its location, the dates of employment, and your job title. Also, include a bulleted list of job responsibilities and achievements:
- Responsibility/Achievement #1
- Responsibility/Achievement #2
Include college, graduate school, continuing education, certifications and relevant seminars and classes in the Education section of your resume. If you are a recent graduate, you might move this education section to the top of your resume.
You might also choose to include your GPA if you are a current student or very recent graduate:
Qualifications and Skills
Include a list of qualifications and skills related to the job for which you are applying in this section. A bulleted list is the best way to format this section:
More on Different Resume Sections
Still not quite sure what information should go in each section of your resume? Take a look at each of the sections that you need to include in a resume, along with information on how to format each.
Review Resume Samples
Microsoft Resume Templates
Writing an effective academic CV
How to create a curriculum vitae that is compelling, well-organized and easy to read
By Elsevier Biggerbrains Posted on 4 January 2013
Editor's note: Because this article is from a few years ago, some of the links may not work. We are working on updating it now. Please note that you can also find excellent career information on the Elsevier Publishing Campus.
A curriculum vitae allows you to showcase yourself and your academic and professional achievements in a concise, effective way. You want to have a compelling CV that is well-organized and easy to read, yet accurately represents your highest accomplishments.
[pullquote align="right"]Don't be shy about your achievements, but also remember to be honest about them. Do not exaggerate or lie![/pullquote]
Academic CVs differ from the CVs typically used by non-academics in industry, because you need to present your research, various publications and awarded funding in addition to the various other items contained in a non-academic CV.1
This guide provides advice and tips on how best to write a CV for the academic field. The advice and tips are organized into categories as could be used to structure a CV as well. You do not need to follow the format used here, but it is advised to address the categories covered here somewhere in your CV.
To start with some general advice first, you should consider length, structure and formatting of your CV.
Length: Since academic CVs must present so much information with regard to research and publications, it is generally acceptable if CVs are more than 2 pages long.2 It is best not to exceed 4 pages maximum.3
- Structure: Choose a structure for your CV with the main headings and sub-headings you will use. There are several sources and CV samples available and links are provided to these sources at the end of this document.In general, however, you should start with providing some brief personal details, then a brief career summary. Your education, publications and research should follow and be the focus for the first section of your CV. Other important categories to address include: funding, awards and prizes, teaching roles, administrative experience, technical and professional skills and qualifications, any professional affiliations or memberships, conference and seminar attendances and a list of references.
- Formatting: Your CV should be clear and easy to read. Use legible font types in a normal size (font size 11 or 12) with normal sized margins (such as 1 inch or 2.5 cm margins). Use bullet points to highlight important items and to concisely present your credentials. Keep a consistent style for headings and sub-headings and main text – do not use more than 2 font types in your CV. Make smart, but sparing use of bold, italics and underlining. Be aware of spelling and grammar and ensure it is perfect. Re-read a few times after writing the CV to ensure there are no errors and the CV is indeed.4
[note color="#f1f9fc" position="right" width=400 margin=10 align="alignright"]
Early Career Resources
This guide is from Early Career Resources, which provides career development resources for early-career researchers. The website has sections on search and discovery, writing and publishing, networking, funding and career planning. Read the original article and download a PDF here. [/note]
Personal Details Personal details include your name, address of residence, phone number(s) and professional e-mail address. You may also include your visa status, as relevant.
Career Summary The career summary is not a statement of your ambitions or objectives. It is a brief summary of approximately 5 -7 sentences summarizing your expertise in your discipline(s), years of expertise in the area(s), noteworthy research findings, key achievements and publications.
Education Provide an overview of your education starting from your first academic degree to the most recent degree obtained (reverse chronological order). Include the names of the institutions, thesis or dissertation topics and type of degree obtained.
The listing of publications is a key part of an academic's CV. It is advisable to list your most reputed publications in ranking of type, such as books, book chapters, peer-reviewed journal articles, non-peer-reviewed articles, articles presented as prestigious conferences, forthcoming publications, reports, patents, and so forth. Consider making an exhaustive list of all publications in an appendix.
Research As an academic, your research experiences, your findings, the methods you use and your general research interests, are critical to present in the first part of your CV. Highlight key research findings and accomplishments.
Honors and Recognitions Here is a section where you can allow yourself to shine. Share any prizes, awards, honors or other recognitions for your research and work with the year it occurred and by who/which body the award was granted.
Funding The funding you have attracted for your research and work is recognition of the value of your research and efforts. If applying for positions, institutions also like to see what kind of funding you can attract. As with the honors and recognitions, be forthcoming with what you have obtained in terms of grants, scholarships and funds.
Teaching This section is straightforward. List your teaching experiences, including the institutions, the years you taught, as well as the subject matters you taught and the level of the course(s).
Administrative experience Any administrative experience within a faculty or research institute should be noted on your CV. Do you facilitate (or have you in the past) a newsletter, an event(s), or anything else at your institution? If so, and particularly if relevant to your discipline, include it in your CV.
Professional experience If you have been employed in industry and it is relatively recent (approximately within the last 5-10 years) and relevant to your academic work, it is important to include it. If relevant, professional experience can explain any gap fills in your academic work and demonstrate the diversity in your capabilities.5
Other skills and qualifications As on every CV, academics should highlight key skills and qualifications relevant to your research and academic work. Technical and practical skills, certifications, languages, and more, are relevant to mention in this section.
Professional affiliations and memberships If you belong to any professional group or network related to your areas of expertise, you should mention them in this section. Only list affiliations or memberships with which you are active (within last 5 years, for example). This should not be a lengthy section.
Attendance at conferences and seminars List the most relevant conferences or seminars where you presented or participated in a panel within the last 5-7 years. In an appendix, you can add an exhaustive list of conferences and seminars where you participated by giving a speech, presented a paper or research, or participated in a discussion panel.
References It is advised to list at least three contact persons who can provide a reference for your research, work and character. Provide their names and complete contact information. Clearly, they should all be academics and all people you have worked with.6
Appendices As referenced already in some of the preceding categories, it is ok to include an appendix. Appendices enable you to keep the main content of your CV brief, while still providing relevant detail.7 Items to list in an appendix can include publications, short research statements or excerpts, conference or seminar participation, or something similar and relevant which you would like to provide more details about.8
CVs are not only for job searching As a presentation by Dr. Wendy Perry of the University of Virginia clearly indicates, CVs are not just for job-searching. This is important to keep in mind when preparing your CV. You will regularly need to update your CV and to adapt it for the various purposes. In Perry's presentation, she highlighted the other frequent uses of an academic CV, including9:
- Awards, fellowships
- Grant applications
- Public speaking
- Merit/tenure review
Outline example of academic CV
[note color="#f1f9fc" position="center" width=800] Also, if you are applying for a position with an academic institution, they may have their own preferred CV outline. Inquire to see if the institution does have a preference and use it.[/note]