CV or Curriculum Vitae

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Curriculum Vitae

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Remember when I said that there is an exception to every rule in the resume business? Well, here's another one. In most cases, resumes should be concise and limited to one or two pages at the most. You will carefully select your information to provide a synopsis. In the professions, however, a much longer resume is expected and the longer the resume the better your chances of getting an interview. Those industries generally include medicine, law, education, science, and media (television, film, etc.).

If you are applying for a job in a foreign country, long resumes with more detail and a considerable amount of personal information are the norm. Such a professional resume is called a curriculum vita (CV) from the Latin meaning "course of one's life." For those of us who have trouble knowing how to spell the word, vita is singular and vitae is plural.

A successful CV will include not only education and experience but also publications (books, magazines, journals, and other media), certifications, licenses, grants, professional affiliations, awards, honors, presentations, and/or courses taught. Anything relevant to your industry is appropriate to use on a CV, and the resume can be as long as it needs to be to present the "course of your life."

A CV--or any resume with multiple pages for that matter--must contain a header with your name and page number on each successive page. Should the pages become separated, the reader should be able to easily put your subsequent pages in their proper order and with your resume!

Sample CVs:

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