What is Curriculum Vitae? Top 10 CV Formats to Download

Is CV another name for a resume? How to write a CV? What are the CV Formats? A number of questions pop up in our minds as we begin to write one. Here you will come across the meaning of curriculum vitae, why is it important, how should it be written. So, scroll down and find all that you wanted to know about Curriculum Vitae.



Curriculum Vitae Meaning

“A brief account of an individual’s education, academic qualifications, and previous occupations, typically sent with a job application is called Curriculum Vitae or CV”

Your “CV” is your most important tool when hunting for a job. It hardly matters how qualified you are, or how much experience you possess – if your CV formats are poorly presented. Moreover, you really have a tough time in getting the job you want – or even an interview.

So, taking the time to work on your CV is really important. It saves futile wastage of time in hunting for jobs. Here, are some tips and advice on how to make your resume in the best possible way.

The Purpose Of a CV

Your Curriculum Vitae is a marketing tool. It demonstrates the following:

  • That you are employable.
  • How perfectly you meet the job and the company’s requirements
  • That you possess the right qualifications and education
  • That you have the most relevant experience and skills
  • Lastly, you possess the right level of professionalism for the job.

How long should a Curriculum Vitae (CV) be?

As such, there is no fixed length for a CV. A curriculum vitae varies in length depending on your education and experience. For those who haven’t worked much before, two pages are best. However, experienced individuals can write three pages.

Furthermore, ensure that you don’t pad out your CV. If your CV is only one page but well-presented, it gets better results than a two-page resume stuffed with irrelevant information.

To understand this better, review our curriculum vitae example for job, a sample of cv for job application given below.

How should you order your CV?

Usually, it’s good to present the information in this order:

  1. Contact Details
  2. Objective statement/ Career Summary
  3. Key skills
  4. List of technical skills
  5. Core Competencies
  6. Career overview
  7. Academic Qualifications
  8. Employment history/volunteering work/ Internships/ placements
  9. Other sections such as publications, references, published article links.

It is not compulsory to include everything on this list to your CV/ resume every time. One can change the sections and order from application to application.

Most importantly, the most useful information should come across first. For instance, if your work history is not closely related to the job, put it toward the end of your resume.

How to write a curriculum vitae|Best way to write a CV

Wondering how to create an impactful CV? One that catches attention and wins you an interview. Scroll down and discover. Given below are guidelines to create a perfect CV that can win any job interview.

1. Contact details

Ensure that you include your name, email address and a contact phone number. Including your home address isn’t compulsory, although there might be instances when doing so can be a good idea.

Tip- Do not include your contact info in the header or footer of CV. Software-based CV selection may find difficulty in reading the information in headers or footers.

2. Career statement/Objective/Summary

An opening objective statement is a summary of who you are, where and what you’ve studied, work history, and what you bring to the job.

Objective Statement is just 2-3 lines while Summary can be about six lines long. Write it in the first person. However, avoid personal reference (i.e., do not say “I did this” rather say “Did this”).

Related-How To Make Best Career Objective For CV for Freshers 20+ Samples

3. Key skills

Your CV must include a list of between minimum 5 and maximum 15 skills. They must link your experience to the job you are applying for.

Check out the job advertisement for “desirable” skills and experience. Your list of skills & strengths must respond to all of the items on the job description list.

Include things you’ve done or learned to do as part of:

  • Previous Jobs
  • Your studies
  • Any work placements you have done
  • Volunteer Experiences

Related- What are the best skills to put on your resume?

4. Technical skills

Here in this short list include the names of software or technology you are familiar with. For instance-

  • Word processing or excel spreadsheet software
  • Programming languages such as Java, HTML, CSS, etc.
  • Tools like cash registers, EFTPOS
5. Core Competencies

If you lack work experience, a list of personal attributes/ core competencies can be a perfect way to demonstrate that you are the right person for the job.

Include in this section things that might demonstrate that you are a reliable, honest, trustworthy, quick learner, etc.

You can list three to five attributes. However, make sure you do not include them instead of your key skills.

6. Academic Qualifications

Educational History must show your highest level of education. Include GPA only when showing it proves how well you’re suited to the job.

Also, you can include a few bullet points listing. Here mention your academic achievements (e.g., captaincies, awards, or groups you’ve been part of).

7. Employment history/volunteering work/ Internships/ placements

Follow the reverse chronological CV formats. In this, you start with your most recent job and go backward. Mention the position title and the tenure of your work there.

If you haven’t had work experience, you can state other things to demonstrate your experience. For instance-

  • Work experience through school/college
  • Work placements or internships.
  • Any Volunteer work you’ve done

For each job include the things that you achieved in that job. Moreover, state the significant contributions you made to the organization.

Also, you can include any testimonials as part of your educational history or your volunteering/work history.

What NOT to include on your CV/Resume?

Here are things not to include on your Curriculum Vitae. There may be circumstances when including some of the following information reflects that you’re a good fit for the job. In that case, you must add them.

1. Personal or Private information

There is no benefit to be gained from giving information that describes your personal life. For instance-

  • Your date of birth
  • Gender
  • Any ailments or disabilities
  • Health status
  • Marital Status

However, in exceptional cases when providing this information would bestow your application an advantage (e.g., if the recruiter employer is hunting for a female applicant). In these cases, consider including such information as they might strengthen your application.

2. Typos And Errors

A CV or cover letter with spelling mistakes guarantee that you don’t get an interview. Therefore, spellcheck your resume/CV before you send it. Ask someone else to read it as well and catch flaws you might have missed.

Also, getting your resume looked at by someone professional is helpful.

3. Images and Graphics

Never include images or photos on your CV unless asked for. In addition to being disliked by recruiters, they can also create problems with tracking software.

4. Headers

Certain recruitment software may be unable to read information in headers and footers. So, it is wise to avoid them on your CV. If you do include ensure that you include the same information in the body of the document too.

5. Fancy formatting

These are a big no. On the contrary, stick to easy-to-read fonts and CV formats. Your CV must be easy to scan, clean, with a lot of white space. This makes it easier for employers to review your resume. Best fonts to use include:

  • Verdana
  • Arial
  • Century Gothic
  • Calibri
  • Times New Roman

Furthermore, use a 10- or 11-point font for your main content. For headings a 12- or 14-point maximum.

Related- Best Free Resume pdf Format Download

How to Tailor your CV?

Do I need to change my CV for each and every application?

You must tailor your CV to every job application so that it answers the specific requirements of the job you’re applying for.

However, you need not change much. Just ensure that you make necessary changes in your opening statement, key skills, and personal attributes in a way that all respond to the needs of the role.

Tips to Tailor your CV

  • Use your career statement to link your experience and education to the company’s requirements.
  • List your most relevant skills first.
  • Include examples of achievements that match the advertised requirements of the job.
  • Incorporate specifically relevant keywords throughout your CV.

Download a curriculum vitae Template and CV Formats with Pictures

Check out some latest CV Formats that you can download for free.

elegant cv template
CV Template 2
Designer CV template 3
CV for University Teacher
Fresher writer CV Format
Elementary Teacher Resume
Fashion Designer Resume

Difference between curriculum vitae and resume

There are specific differences in CV Formats and Resume formats. The two are not the same. Read on two discover the glaring differences.

Curriculum vitae vs resume

ResumeCurriculum Vitae (CV)
A resume layout is concise and selective.A CV is elaborate and outlines the entire educational as well as professional history, in addition to major accomplishments and credentials.
A resume is one paged document. In exceptional cases, it can be 2 pages.A CV is always more than 2 pages in length.
Generally, a resume is used when applying for private sector jobs.A CV is used when applying for jobs in the public sector.

So, download the formats that suit your field and create your own perfect customized resume.

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