(CV) Curriculum Vitae Basics

What is a Curriculum Vitae (CV)?

CV is short for Curriculum Vitae and is a comprehensive, biographical statement emphasizing your professional qualifications and activities. In general, a CV includes more information than a resume and can range from 2-50 pages in length depending on experience.  Rather than focusing on work history, a CV provides a summary of one’s educational and academic background by highlighting teaching and research experience, publications, presentations, professional affiliations, and academic honors.  CVs are also typically written in a more narrative, paragraph format, as opposed to the quick bullet points found on resumes. In addition, an international CV may look quite different from an American CV and usually includes personal details such as age, marital status, religious affiliation, and a photo.

What is the difference between a US CV and a Resume?

  • A CV includes more information than a resume and can range from 2 to 50 pages in length
  • Rather than focusing on work history, a CV provides a summary of one's educational and academic background by highlighting teaching and research experience, publications, presentations, professional affiliations, and academic honors
  • CV's are typically written in a narrative, paragraph format, as opposed to bullet points

When is a CV Appropriate?

A CV should only be used when specifically requested. This might occur in the following instances:

  • Applications for admission to graduate or professional programs
  • Proposals for fellowships or grants
  • Applications for international employment
  • Independent consulting in a variety of settings
  • Providing information related to professional activities (i.e. applications for professional memberships and leadership positions, and presentations at professional conferences)
  • Applications used for positions in academia, including:
    • Higher education positions in teaching and research
    • Institutional research and consulting
    • School administration (i.e., elementary or secondary principals, superintendents, deans of schools)

CV: Sections to Include

Contact Information

Name, address(es), phone number(s) and email

Education
List academic degrees beginning with the degree in progress or most recently earned. Include: Name of institution, city & state, degree type and area of concentration, and month/year degree was (or will be) received. If your GPA is 3.0 or higher, it's appropriate to include. You may also include 

Certifications

Honors and Awards

Relevant Experience

Other Experience

Grants Received

Professional Associations

Publications

Research

Educational Travel

Community Involvement

Leadership Experience

Qualifications or Skills