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Home Address:
14 High Street
Tel: 02392 321456
Mob: 07799 354612
E-mail: Fred.Bloggs@exeter.ac.uk
Term Address:
(if this is different) 34 College Road
St Leonards
Tel: 01392 456321
Nationality: British (optional - include if you are not a UK citizen or if your name
might lead an employer to think you were from overseas)
Note: It is not necessary to include age, marital status or dependants. There is no
need to write "Curriculum Vitae" across the top of your document - it will be
recognised by recruiters without this label!
Personal Statement:
This is an optional item, but it can be useful to state
your careers intentions in a succinct way at the beginning of your CV, especially if
this is a "stand alone" document not accompanied by a covering letter.
Some students may prefer to state their career aims in a covering letter but
where the CV is e mailed to an employer or agency the personal statement can
be useful.
It can be written either in the first or third person.
It is generally placed immediately beneath the personal details.
An ambitious law graduate keen to apply their academic knowledge in a
commercial law practice. Willing to work hard to achieve early responsibility and
to work with colleagues and clients to the highest possible standards.
I am an enthusiastic and versatile undergraduate keen to use my languages in
the communications field. My ability to work hard and relate well to a wide variety
of people has influenced my decision to seek work in Public Relations.
Education: Note: This is always set out in reverse chronological order ie your
degree (or postgraduate qualifications) at the top of the list.
Higher Education If you are not planning to use the specific academic knowledge
gained during your degree then there is no value in outlining all the modules in
great detail. You could mention one or two that may demonstrate your

transferable skills eg a research topic or a module in which you developed your

IT skills. If you are in your final year and expecting to achieve a good degree
grade, then state it - don't be modest!
If you studied for an Access Course prior to you degree, mention dates, subjects
For many mature students GCSEs, CSEs, O Levels and A Levels may be rather
a long way back to be relevant for your current applications. It is a matter of
choice whether you mention them or not and whether you include grades or not.
Consider whether they are a selling point and whether they add to the image you
want to convey. If you think they deserve a mention then a short statement will be
sufficient, eg 6 O Level passes including English and Mathematics.
Suggested Layout:
2003-2006 University of Exeter
BSc Hons Biological Sciences - expected grade 2.1
The course covered a wide variety of topics and I am undertaking an individual
research project in the final year. The course has developed my analytical skills
and ability to present complex information in a clear and concise manner.
2002-2003 Exeter College
Access course covering topics such as mathematics, study techniques, research
and writing.
Work Experience: This is always laid out in reverse chronological order ie. the
most recent first. This is done because it is more likely that your recent work will
be more relevant to the career you are seeking than perhaps the Saturday job or
the paper round you carried out while at school.
The current trend is for the job description to include skills rather than actual
activities. For example, a bar job would not usually be described as "pulling pints
and chatting to customers" but more likely as " working in a team under pressure
in a busy bar, learning the importance of customer care and taking responsibility
for maintaining stock levels and handling cash". This descriptive approach is
particularly important when CVs are sent on line and scanned by a computer
programmed to pick up certain skills such as customer care or team working.
If you have done a very large number of jobs, for example when working through
a temping agency, these can be grouped together in a statement such as
"worked in a variety of jobs such as receptionist in a busy office, data inputting
and call centre work. These required a great amount of adaptability to new
environments and the ability to pick up new skills very quickly".
Suggested Layout:
Work Experience

July-Sep 2005 W.G.Butler & Co - STEP summer placement

This was an eight week placement with a small firm of building merchants. My
project was to look into new markets for the firm's products and devise new
marketing materials and an advertising campaign. I had to research my findings
and present the results to the company owner. My findings were accepted and I
was employed beyond the end of my project to implement the plan.
Aug-Sep 2004 The Fiery Horse Public House, New Malden - Bar Work
Working in a team under pressure in a busy bar, learning the importance of
customer care and taking responsibility for maintaining stock levels and handling
Other jobs have included Christmas Post delivery, factory production line and
Saturday work on a supermarket till while studying in the sixth form.
July 2005
Editorial assistant working on the revision of a leading GCSE science text
book. Responsible for checking copy and liaising with printers.
August 2004
Au pair to two French children in Paris.
2001-2004: Bredon Lodge Residential Care Home.
I worked as a Care Assistant during university vacations. During my time at the
home I was responsible for the welfare of elderly residents, many of whom have
Alzheimer's disease and all of whom are unable to care for themselves. I was
often in charge of the home during night shifts, and in this capacity was
responsible for the safety of the residents and for the work of other staff.
Recent Work Experience:
2004: Sports Promotion Co
Worked as a volunteer at the Cycle Club of Great Britain. This provided a great
insight into sports marketing, especially event management and athlete
2004: The Cheshire Mencap Centre
Organised a placement in a centre, which offers sheltered employment and
training for people with learning difficulties. The work involved supervising clients
and attending a training session on personality disorders.

1999-2004: Sales Assistant, Next

Part time work at weekends and during holidays for the past four years,
recently becoming responsible for Branch Stock Accounts. Through this work I
have learnt the importance of customer care and have also gained an insight into
the retail sector.
Skills: A section on skills is a useful way of highlighting your strong points for the
job(s) you are applying for. You can include both "hard" skills such as languages
and IT as well as "soft" skills such as leadership or organisational skills. It is
useful to be able to change the emphasis in this section in relation to the jobs you
are applying for and an examination of the brochure, advertisement or web site of
an employer will often give you clues about the particular skills they are looking
Suggested Layout:
Languages: Fluent French, good working knowledge of German, basic Spanish.
IT skills: Frequent user of Windows XP, Internet and e-mail. Working knowledge
of Frontpage 2000 and Powerpoint.
Communication: Strong verbal and written skills developed during my studies
and by taking part in public speaking events.
Teamwork: Have both worked in and lead successful teams while being part of
the Hall Committee at University and running a Young Enterprise company at
Full Clean Driving Licence.
If your life to date has been dotted with achievements which
have not been mentioned under other headings then it can be a good idea to
highlight these under a separate section to make them immediately obvious to
someone reading your CV. This is not, however, a section that will be useful to all
students and a heading of "achievements" with a solitary entry that you were
once elected blackboard monitor at Primary School should best be avoided.
Suggested Layout:
Head Boy: elected by staff in my final year at school.
Music: achieved grade 6 trombone.
Duke of Edinburgh Award: achieved bronze, silver and gold awards.
Young Enterprise: part of a team running a successful company - reached the
regional finals in a competition for best run company.
Prizes: Awarded the sixth form prize for English and best contribution to school

Dean's Commendation: achieved this award in second year of my degree for
outstanding overall results.
Rag Committee: part of a team which raised 15,000 for local charities during
Rag Week in 2005.
Most CVs will include a short piece about your interests. These can
often be a useful talking point at interview so make sure that your "trip down the
Amazon" really happened because, if not, you can be sure that your interviewer
has made the journey! Just mentioning things such as "reading" or "cinema" is
rather bland - add a few details eg reading, especially authors such as...
Suggested Layout:
Sport: I regularly play both football and hockey for an inter mural side. I
represented my school in the first XI Football team. During the summer I keep fit
by jogging and working out in my local gym.
Travel:During my gap year I travelled to Australia and the Far East. I enjoyed
the challenge of planning travel in foreign countries and meeting new people and
observing very different cultures. Last summer I went to the USA where I both
worked and travelled across the country.
Cooking: I have been an enthusiastic cook for many years and specialise in
Indian cuisine. I like to entertain friends when my budget allows.
Music: I play the guitar for pleasure. At school I was part of a rock band.
Interests; Travelling (have visited USA, Australia and Far East), sport (play
both hockey and football in inter mural sides), cooking and music (I play the
guitar and listen to rock).
References: It is not essential to add the names and addresses of referees to
the end of your CV but it can be useful for a potential employer to be able to
contact someone quickly if they are interested in calling you for an interview.
If you choose not to then a statement such as the following is sufficient:
References: Available on request.
If you decide to include them then choose your referees with care! You want to
make sure that they will say nice things about you! It is normal to choose one
academic referee and one from an employer or someone who knows you well
from another sphere such as a friend of the family. It is very important to ask their
permission first and a good idea to give them a copy of your CV so they know
what you are saying about yourself. Your academic referee can be a personal
tutor but if you have had little contact with your tutor you could choose someone

else in your department who knows your work.

Suggested Layout:
Dr D.S. Scudder
Department of Russian
Queens Building
University of Exeter
E mail: D.Scudder@exeter.ac.uk
Personnel Officer
Ceeway Construction Ltd
North Business Park
01467 324324

Mrs J Budley

You now have guidelines to produce a CV suitable for your own personal needs.
You can use the style given in these guidelines or view the other templates to
create your own document. Alternatively you could use these guidelines and
develop your own style of CV.
Most CVs will require a covering letter and you can use the guidelines below to
create your own.
Download covering letter template
The Covering Letter
This is a very important part of the application and is often overlooked when
writing to employers. When you include a letter with your CV they should
complement each other to make the strongest possible application. There are a
few important guidelines to follow:
The letter should NOT be more than one side of A4.
Use normal business layout for a formal letter (see template for example).
Try and address the letter to a named person - you may be able to get a name
from a job advertisement or alternatively you could telephone the company and
ask to whom you should send graduate job applications.
Word process unless the advertisement specifically asks for a hand written
It should complement rather than repeat the information included in the CV.

Check your spelling and grammar - some recruiters are very picky!
Use good quality paper - preferably the same used for the CV.
The structure consists of 4 main sections:
A brief introduction.
Explaining why you want to work for this organisation.
Explaining why you would make an excellent candidate for the job.
A brief conclusion.
The Introduction
Introduce yourself, say what you are applying for and where you saw the
Eg: I am a final year undergraduate at Exeter University applying for a training
contract with your organisation which was advertised on the Careers Service web
The Company Plug
You should include why you have selected this particular firm and what sets it
apart from others. You can glean much of this information from the company
brochure and/or web site. It is a crucial part of the letter and one which many
applicants overlook.
Eg: I am particularly keen to work for Joe King & Co because of its reputation in
the field of electronics as an innovative company and one which takes pride in
the development of its staff. The international outlook of the company is vital in
this field and I am keen to join an expanding company and be a part of the
growth in the global market.
Your Personal Plug
In this paragraph you should take the opportunity to explain why you would make
an excellent choice as an employee - outline your main selling points and try and
make yourself difficult to resist!
Eg: As you can see from my CV, my studies in the field of ecology and plant
development are very relevant to the post of researcher and these together with
my project work and my summer placement with Devon Wildlife have given me
an excellent background for the job. In addition to this I have developed good
communication skills whilst at university and in my vacation jobs and have the
ability to work hard both on my own and in a team.
In Conclusion
This should be brief and to the point and also include any plans you may have to
follow up this application - especially if you are making a speculative approach to
an organisation.
Eg: I enlcose my CV for your consideration and look forward to hearing from
Or I enclose my CV for your consideration and I will contact you later this

month to discuss my application further.

Signing Off
If you have addressed the letter "Dear Sir/Madam" then you should finish with
"Yours faithfully".
Alternatively if you have written to a named person, eg "Dear Mrs Brown" then
you should finish with "Yours sincerely".
2000-2011 Careers and Employment Service, University of Exeter