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Despite their name, curricula vitae are simply a specific sort of resume, the style preferred by candidates for medical, academic, teaching and research positions. Most of these candidates have an educational background directly related to the positions they seek, so education is always featured first. Even after twenty years of research, your degrees and the schools where you earned them will overshadow your experience.
The main differences between resumes and c.v.'s are:
C.v.'s almost never list an objective, and seldom have a long narrative profile. They are sometimes diagrammatic, giving exceptionally brief listings for each experience. Your credentials and preparations will have to speak for themselves. If you want to make a more elaborate argument for your candidacy, you must do it in your cover letter.
C.v.'s are properly more understated than business resumes, and any hint of self-congratulation is likely to backfire on the author. Similarly, c.v.'s should look rather plain. Even if your computer is full of little pointing hands, fancy page borders, bullets, bells, and whistles, save them for another time. When they are nondiagrammatic, c.v.'s can contain blocky job descriptions of some great length but the emphasis is always on content, not form.
Name dropping is more common in c.v.'s than in resumes. If you performed research under a certain professor, while you would probably list only her title in a business resume, a c.v. would be more likely to include her name. Science and academia are small worlds, and is likely that a prospective employer will have hard of a given specialist in her own field. Similarly, if you went on clinical rotations at a given hospital, name it; your future employer might have hospital privileges there.
Unlike resumes, c.v.s' can run on for pages and pages. They should, however, be very neatly organized, with clear headings and distinct conceptual divisions, so that they can be skimmed as easily as a two-page resume.
In addition to the usual catalog of degrees and job histories, c.v.'s often contain many more categories of information. Experience may be divided between headings for Teaching and Research; education may be divided between Degrees and Continuing Education or Advanced Training; publications may be divided into subcategories of Books, Articles, Conference Presentations, Abstracts, Book Reviews, and Unpublished Papers. How you organize this material determines its impact on your reader.
As with technical resumes, employers get clues about your intelligence and focus from the way you organize and present your c.v. data.
Your presentation will be judged largely on the number and nature of listings. Material that you may think of as irrelevant may end up cinching your presentation. If you give fourteen lectures in the last year, don't say, "but that's obvious" - list them!
When you have published dozens of books and journal articles you can afford to skip the obvious; when you are fresh out of school it is better to let the search committee know exactly what you have done and, by inference, what you can do.
Citing your doctorate in nonverbal communication establishes your basic credentials, but listing lectures like the following is a much more effective way to give the search committee a feeling for who you are as a person and an intellectual:
Outside Lectures and Courses (dates optional on all)
Portland Bar Association
"The Total Argument"
"Choosing Jurors: Consider the Nonverbal Evidence"
"The Defense Attorney and Nonverbal Communication"
University of California, Long Beach
"Use of Space to Communicate"
As with any other resume, review your total universe of material before deciding on what to include, what to feature, and what to omit. Review all potential data in the following categories:
|Degrees||Study Abroad||Volunteer Experience||Appointments|
|Other College Studies||Clinics||Laboratory Skills||Academic/Service/Performance Awards|
|Continuing Education||Conferences||Computer Skills||Activities|
|Committees||Additional|| || |
Bibliographies longer than two pages, or any other category with more than two pages of information, should be separated out from the main body of the c.v. Of course, different disciplines have different protocols for bibliographic data and you will need to learn and follow those for your profession.
All information should be in reverse chronological order.
What to include in a Curriculum Vitae