Framework for Building an Effective Resume
To create a good resume, you must start with a specific objective in mind. This can be a job objective, learning objective, career objective or professional objective. Once you determine your objective, you will then need to create a list of your skills, experience and education that are relevant to the position you are applying for.
A good resume must effectively relate your relevant skills, experience and education to a prospective employer. Thus, it is important to first carefully review job descriptions and to assess whether or not you possess the required skills, experience and background to fill the position. If you do not have the skills or if your qualifications to fill the job are not apparent on your resume, you will not be invited for an interview.
Personal Data (Identification)
Make your name the most prominent piece of information on your resume. Use bold text, no smaller than 14 point and no larger than 24 point. Under your name, in a smaller point size include y our address and phone number, with ZIP and area codes. List a message number if you do not have voice-messaging, an answering machine, or if your roommates are unreliable, and give an email address if you have one. Be sure that your email address is professional. Never include personal information such as your age, marital status or health.
An objective statement is optional. It tells the employer what kind of work you seek. It should be no longer than one sentence. Objectives are often times left off of resumes in favor of expanding one's goals in a cover letter.
List your educational background in reverse chronological order, starting with your highest degree and working backward. Generally, you do not need to list your high school diploma. Listing your GPA is optional in most fields, but is encouraged if it is a 3.5 or above. Minors and dissertation or thesis topics are also included in this section, as are honors bestowed at graduation. Sometimes you may want to highlight your experience or give a summary of your qualifications before listing your education, especially if your skills are more relevant that your degree.
In addition to full and part-time employment, this category also includes internship or volunteer experiences. Include job titles, employers, dates, city and state of your place of work, and responsibilities. Use a positive tone and action words to describe your duties and responsibilities that best match the employer's needs. Strive to show growth or contributions you made while in each assignment, listing the most relevant duties in a given job description. Do not feel obligated to include every job you have ever held.
Be listing the past and present research projects in which you have participated, you give the employer insight into your abilities and training.
Using categories specific to the requirements on the vacancy announcement allows you to target the specific position to which you are applying. It will also allow you to expand on your skills and experience.
Most employers prefer to see references as part of, or attached to, the resume. "Available upon request" is seldom used anymore.