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Applying for a job is stressful. There’s just so much that’s out of your control. A interviewer may be looking for an extremely specific set of skills. A school may go with someone else based on a gut feeling. Or, worst of all, schools may legally have to hold interviews for positions that have essentially already been filled. What’s an art teacher to do?
My advice is to focus on what is in your control. One of those things is your resume or curriculum vitae. But, how do you know which to choose and what to include? Today we’ll explore the difference between the two, why you would choose one over the other as well as specific tips for each.
Both a resume and a curriculum vitae are used to summarize your skills and experience in order to communicate why you are qualified for a job. However, they do differ in three key ways.
Two of the main differences between a resume and a curriculum vitae are how long they are and what purpose they serve. In general, a resume is a one page document that highlights your educational and professional accomplishments. In contrast, a curriculum vitae, or CV, generally stretches to two or three pages. It is a comprehensive look at your academic and professional history. It includes any presentations you’ve given, publications you’ve been selected for, and other specific achievements.
Another way resumes and CVs are different is the way they are organized. A resume’s format and organization system can change depending on the position you’re applying for and what you want to highlight.
In contrast, sections on a curriculum vitae are always organized in reverse chronological order. And, although you may change the order of the sections depending on the position for which you’re applying, the CV will remain comprehensive.
In short, as Jörgen Sundberg writes at The Undercover Recruiter, “I would say the main difference between a resume and a CV is that a CV is intended to be a full record of your career history and a resume is a brief, targeted list of skills and achievements.”
Most of us are used to submitting a resume for job postings. However, make sure you read the listing carefully, just in case. The good news is there generally is no ambiguity. The HR department will specifically ask for one over the other.
Positions in Certain Parts of the World
If you are applying for a job in the US, most often you will be asked for a resume.
However, these parts of the world generally ask for a CV or leave it to your discretion:
So if you’re looking to teach abroad, you will likely want to have a CV ready to go! However, as Stacey Lastoe points out on The Muse, “…if you’re truly dumbfounded about what’s needed, it’s OK to ask the point of contact directly, ‘Would you prefer a resume or CV?’”
Positions in Certain Fields
In addition, you are more likely to be asked for a CV in the United States or anywhere else for positions that relate to academia or research.
However, even if you never plan to apply abroad, become a professor or work in research, creating and maintaining a curriculum vitae is a great idea. As Stacey goes onto say, “Not only can you have it handy if you do ever need it, but you’ll also have a running list of everything you’ve ever accomplished.” In this way, she describes, it becomes like a master resume from which you can pick and choose things to include on resumes for various other positions.
Now that we’ve looked at the differences between the two and when you might be asked for each, let’s talk about some specific tips.
These tips first appeared in the article “The Art Teacher’s Ultimate Guide to Getting Hired.” If you’re still searching for the perfect position, it’s a must-read.
Many of the resume tips above also apply to a curriculum vitae. However, here are three more things to think about as you craft your CV.
Although you can’t control what an interview committee is looking for, you can make sure you bring your A game in terms of a resume or CV. Keep a running list of your accomplishments to make it easy to update your documents at a moment’s notice. You never know when the next exciting opportunity will come your way!
Have you ever had to apply using a curriculum vitae? What tips do you have for crafting one?
What do you think are the most important things to include on documents like these?