Resume writing is an integral part of your application process. There are a few key points that you need to keep in mind.
Use a conventional font for the Resume. Popular are Times New Roman or Arial. Use text size 9 to 12
- Use headings and bullet lists
- Use plain English – Do not use abbreviations, jargon or slang. You cannot assume the admission officer will understand colloquial language and abbreviations.
- The formatting must be consistent and clear
- Send your resume in a pdf format. This keeps the alignment proper. A word or pages format changes when open in different versions of software or screen.
- It’s important to have plenty of “white space” on the page; do not try to fit everything. Margins cannot be too narrow or paragraph spacing too small.
- Resumes should not have any grammatical or spelling mistakes. While spell-check is good, please proof read your resume or have someone proof-read your resume
The Resume should include the following:
- First and last name
- Residential address
- Postal address (if different from residential)
- Home phone number
- Mobile phone number
- E-mail address
- In Reverse chronological order (latest first)
- Qualifications – For each qualification, ensure you include
- Qualification title (no abbreviations)
- Institution name
- Majors, minors and dates of completion or expected completion.
- You could include up to three relevant subjects (only if relevant), but don’t list all subjects as these will be available in your academic transcripts.
- Include your GPA or average result, if they are credit average or better. Qualifications. Including your year 12 details is optional, but common for young graduates.
Include any awards or scholarships you have attained. For recent graduates, don’t go back further than year 11, for older graduates it is not usual to include any school awards. The awards do not have to be academic, they can be any area such as sport, music, community involvement.
List other relevant courses or professional development you have completed
- List jobs in reverse chronological order (unless writing a functional resume). For each job, include the job title, organisation’s name, period of employment and your key responsibilities.
- Any course-related employment should be prominently listed. Consider dividing your employment section into „Professional Experience‟ and „General Experience‟. General jobs should be included if you have little course related work experience; employers can gain valuable information about your general skills from your part-time/casual employment. It is not necessary to include all your past jobs; the test is to determine whether those other jobs demonstrate any of the employability skills (outlined above) and/or the criteria sought by the employer.
Voluntary and Community Work
Previous or current participation in community work, clubs, sport, or youth groups can demonstrate your strong willingness to use your initiative or leadership skills, interpersonal and organisational skills. Employers value people who are worldly, culturally aware, independent and mature. Detail your involvement with organisations, making sure you highlight any particular responsibilities or achievements.
- Highlight your relevant skills and attributes under a separate heading; include both technical skills (also called job specific skills) and employability skills (also called transferable or general skills). Technical skill could include: research skills gained through academic programs; management skills gained through supervisory positions, etc. Employability skills consist of: communication, team work, problem solving, initiative and enterprise, planning and organising, learning, using technology and self-management.
- Each skill needs to be substantiated with a short example that proves your claim. It is essential that you can communicate effectively any skill mentioned with vocational, educational or extra-curricular experiences.
- Employers will be looking for evidence of your academic and employability skills from your: academic performance, employment and extra- curricular activities, incorporating involvements on and off campus. More information about Employability Skills is available at www.careers.monash.edu.
Professional Associations and Affiliations
Include memberships (they may be associate or student memberships) of professional bodies that are relevant to your studies or industry, this is a very efficient way of indicating your long-standing interest and commitment to a profession or industry.
Employers are usually interested in you ‘the person’; they will be curious to know about your talents or hobbies. Your interests can also be an icebreaker, a good talking point in an interview situation. You can include information on personal interests, particularly if they involve group/team activities such as community, sporting, or cultural pursuits.
The final part of your resume should list two or three individuals who can provide a reference on your behalf.
- Include their name, position title, organisation and contact details. Referees should have witnessed your capabilities in an employment or academic environment, and have the authority to provide a prospective employer with credible comments. Ensure it is clear as to how you know them, if they have moved on from your mutual workplace for example include a note in brackets to clarify (e.g. Previously Supervisor at Coles)
- Do not use personal friends, family members and non-work or non-academic associates as referees.
- Make sure you have sought permission from these people before listing them as referees.
- An alternative approach is to omit details of referees on your resume but state that referees are available on request.