Applying for a new job can be stressful, and often, the key to getting your foot in the door for a second look or an interview is a well-organized, thoughtful resume or CV. A good resume or CV will provide a snapshot of your experience, education, and professional interests, but it can be intimidating to organize and present everything in a formatted document – which is where we come in! In addition to helping clients with dissertations, theses, or papers, Dissertation Editor has also helped hundreds of clients with organizing, writing, and formatting their resumes or CVs.

What’s the difference between a resume and a CV?

There are usually a few main differences: the purpose, the length, and formatting.

A CV, or curriculum vitae, is typically at least two pages long and spans a long period of time. It details educational history, awards received, research publications, and so forth. It has a lot of detail about each entry, and doesn’t change based on the job to which you’re applying.

On the other hand, a resume is a much more concise document and should be two pages at most, and is generally one page. It should be adapted to best fit the position to which you’re applying, and you usually have a lot more flexibility in how this is formatted and what material is covered.

For the most part, in the US, a CV is usually used when applying to a job in academia or research, and a resume is used in other situations.

Dos and Don’ts

Do include all pertinent information, especially current contact information.

Don’t cover every inch of the page with information. Leave enough white space to make it easily readable. Use a simple font and minimal embellishment. For a resume, make sure it’s tailored to the specific position to which you’re applying.

Do go over it multiple times for spelling, grammar, and punctuation. A professional editor (like us!) can provide an objective eye and critical feedback, as well as talk with you about what you’d like to convey to a potential employer.

Don’t just focus on getting the resume/CV to them as fast as possible after hearing about the job – this is the first impression they’re getting of you; make it a good one.

Do highlight your achievements and accomplishments, include soft skills, and include membership in professional organizations.

Don’t embellish your experience, awards, or employment. Be honest with your resume or CV. If you’ve misrepresented yourself, chances are, this will come back to haunt you eventually, and could result in termination from employment.

Do use active voice.

Don’t use passive voice.


There’s a lot to consider when applying for a new position, and while it can be stressful and overwhelming, we can help! Not only can we provide assistance with editing and formatting your resume or CV, but we can also set up a consultation with you to discuss the job position and how to best highlight your skills and experience, and we can even set up coaching sessions to practice interview questions via Skype. Contact us today to see how we can help you get your dream job!


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