How to Write a Curriculum Vitae.

How to Write a Curriculum Vitae.

A curriculum vitae (CV) is intended to open up potential employment opportunities for a candidate. It is the gateway to finding a job. Hence it is important that your CV is relevant to the position you are applying for. It is also essential that the format is easy to read. Typically, a CV includes details concerning personal information, educational history, computer skills, language proficiency, employment history and personal or professional achievements.

When compiling your CV, it is important to consider the following criteria:

• Honesty: An honest, factual and objective description is required.

•Contact information: Make sure that your personal and contact details are correct.

• Logic: It should be a logical, user friendly, well-structured and neat document

• Language: The text must be clear and easy to read.

• Concise: The content must be brief and to the point

• Continuity: The career history must reflect your entire career

• Accuracy: All information must be correct and verifiable.

• References: Permission must be obtained from the referees for contact purposes.

• Editing: The text must be thoroughly edited.

• Job specific: Ensure that the position advertised is stated in the introduction of the document.


The following format is suggested for writing or updating your CV: (Please remember that your CV should be relevant to the position you apply for. As a result, you do not need to cover all of the categories provided below.):

1. Position advertised: The position you apply for or the field in which you seek employment.

2. Personal Details

• Surname and First Name(s)

• Residential Address

• Telephone numbers: Cellular; Work; Home

• E-Mail

• Gender

• Nationality

• ID Number

• Drivers Licence

• Languages

• Health/Disability

• Marital Status and dependents


3. Education and Training

• Institutions (schools, colleges, universities)

• Field of study (if you are a post matric student, provide your year of study and the qualification you are registered for (e.g. second year BSc)

• Qualifications (degrees, diplomas, certificates)

• Further training and professional development (programmes, providers and certificates)

4. Employment history

• Present position and employer (including relevant responsibilities)

• Employment history (experience in terms of employers, positions held and periods of employment in the work place concerned)

5. Professional experience and achievements

• Projects

• Publications

• Papers Read

• Awards

• Special Achievements

6. Management and Other Achievements

• Management; Leadership

• Sport Achievements

• Cultural Achievements

7. General (additional information)

8. References: The names, titles and the contact details of the referees must be listed, preferably coupled with a very brief referee report.