Buchtel College of Arts & Sciences - Careers

Skills - Curriculum Vitae

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“Course of Life” is the Latin translation of curriculum vitae.

This job search tool, therefore, is meant to show professional growth in greater detail than a traditional résumé. A C.V. is organic, a process— an on-going, ever-changing, comprehensive reflection of the educational and professional elements of the individual attempting to secure a personal interview.


  • academic positions
  • administrative positions in academia
  • professional positions in the sciences



  • from two pages (as is typically the case for individuals just graduating)
  • to 20+ pages (as may be the case for a college professor)



  • easy to read, thoroughly organized, and thoughtfully prepared
  • informative and pertinent to the position being sought
  • able to generate interest in the reader (within 3 minutes)
  • truthful in describing accomplishments


This is your life’s course, and you can showcase it according to your personal desires. HOWEVER, you must adhere to some basic rules:

  • Use clean white, off-white, or buff-colored 16-25# weighted bond paper with 25% cotton fiber
  • Purchase 9x12 envelopes so you never fold your documents
  • Use easy-to-read fonts (Times Roman/Courier/Arial/Calibri) in a 10-12 point size
  • Use a consistent format with ample margins
  • Be clear and concise in style
  • Make it self-contained [Qualifications/achievements are stated in document, not attached]
  • It is UNNECESSARY to use a heading stating “Curriculum Vita,” “C.V.,’ or Vita.” [As with a résumé, the identity of the document is obvious!]
  • Be aware of the audience and seek to answer possible inquiries
  • Proofread, proofread, proofread
  • Ask a friend to proofread, proofread, proofread!


As with the résumé, this document is intended to secure an interview wherein you will shine brighter than your competition and get the job! It is extremely important, therefore, that you provide the interested parties with all the pertinent information that you can.

This does not mean that you must include every single adventure you have experienced in life during the past x number of years.

It does mean that you should include everything that relates to the open position you seek to fill. In the future, after publishing and presenting papers and administrating and teaching and lecturing, if it takes several pages to showcase your pertinent information, so be it!
Remember the basic rules.

Because this is a display of your educational and professional adventures, you have the option of arranging the sections according to your personal preference. You should always begin with personal data, however, and include any of the following which are relevant to your experience:

  • Personal Data
  • Career Objectives
  • Education: undergraduate, graduate, post-graduate in reverse chronological order
  • Dissertation summary
  • Licensure and Certification
  • Professional experience in reverse chronological order
  • Employment
  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Administration
  • Publications
  • Areas of expertise
  • Areas of Teaching or Research interest
  • Professional memberships
  • Honors and Awards
  • Committee assignments
  • Academic or Professional service
  • References in short list with phone numbers

[Sample CV's are available in CAS 125.]

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