Creating a Resume
CREATING A RESUME
A resume is for most non-academic jobs: industry, non-profit sector, government, and higher education staff (non-teaching/research). Notably, a resume is shorter than a CV and relies on a description of your skills (e.g., communication, technical, management), as opposed to a full story of your academic accomplishments:
- 2 pages max; font size = 10/11; margins = .7” on all 4 sides (1 page for most master’s level resumes); if 2 pages, add last name and page # to footer (smaller size font, italics)
- No narrative; use all bulleted items
- Save space by putting all information on one line; insert symbol between sections
- Use only one mailing address and one email address, plus phone; may include professional website URL for additional information
- Expected: Education, Experience, Skills
- Optional: Research, Community Service, Leadership, Industry Experience, Publications/Presentations, Summary of Skills/Qualifications, etc.
- Summary of Qualifications: can be effective in highlighting skills for specific position; 3-4 bullets may be used; draw from actual job description
- Research: for research-heavy positions—demonstrate your research accomplishments; focus on applied part of research activity—writing skill, presentations, lab/tech skills, in addition to substance of research topic; include any improvements/conclusions that have improved knowledge, equipment, computer models; lab management, or supervising others, can go with research
- Experience: emphasize improvements or accomplishments in jobs, assistantships
- Publications/Presentations: use no more than 2-3 and call it Selected Publications/Presentations
- Relevant Projects: if your most relevant skills come from academic projects (often the case with master’s degrees), use this category
- References: not included on resume; but need 3 for most application forms
Keep Your Audience in Mind
- What is most important to your potential employer? Read the job description carefully–highlight those portions that reflect your skills; visit the company/organization’s website.
- Mirror the job description in your resume and letter—use their terminology to describe your skills (increases the chance your resume will make it through initial computer screen)
- Employers are seeking skills and experience they need to be successful.
- Recruiters read 100’s of resumes—make yours pleasing and easy to read.
- Don’t give them a reason to take yours out of the “maybe” pile (for small mistakes).
- Words in all caps: don’t depend on spell-check—it won’t check them.
- Ask a friend to proofread for you.
- Have resume reviewed (Walk-ins, Graduate School, 010 Alumni, 4-6 pm Mondays).