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Curriculum Vitae


 Preparing an effective Curriculum Vitae 

An interview situation is very similar to a selling situation. In order make an effective sale, knowledge about the product and the market is very essential. Similarly, in order to be successful in an interview, adequate preparation and knowledge of the activities of the prospective employer are a must. In other words, the interviewee must be conversant with his product (i.e. he must have good subject knowledge) in order to effectively sell himself.

The first and most important tool in selling oneself is a carefully organized and well designed CV. It serves as a personal advertisement of the job seeker and must, therefore, be organized in a manner such that it appears interesting. Attractive, brief and informative.

Success in an interview depends to a large extent on the impression created by the CV. Therefore some of the questions that a candidate must ask himself before writing his bio-data are :

1. What are my strengths, and do they meet the requirements of the selector:

2. What are my weaknesses? Is there a consistency between what I desire and what I have done so far?

3. What opportunities do I perceive? What can I do for the "buyer" ? what is it that I can offer better than others?

4. What is the learning yet to be done by me? Do I have the necessary education, project work/experience, to back up my career goals? The answers should lead to the contents of the bio-data.


There are certain items which must be included in every CV and others that may or may not be mentioned depending on whether they are relevant to a specific situations or not. The items which must be included are as follows:

1. Personal information's : Name, age, marital status, address, telephone number etc.

2. Educational background.

3. Academic honors/achievements.

5. Membership of professional organizations

6. Employment history

7. Extra-curricular activities : Personal achievements and demonstrated group leadership experience. Hobbies/Interests may be mentioned only if they enhance the individual's image and show sincerity and seriousness in pursuing an avocation e.g. position or rank held in the field of interest

8. Career goals and job objectives.

9. Preparation made toward attainment of career goals by way of courses taken, articles/papers published assignments handled etc.

The C V may not include the following items unless specifically asked for by the employer or in a specific situation where this information could be useful in marketing the candidate. Most of the items listed do not directly add to the candidate's talent abilities or qualifications.

1. Willingness to travel or relocate.

2. Statement of health.

3. Reasons for leaving past job.

4. Names and addresses of referees.


Although every CV containers similar items of information, the attitude and style of presenting data vary from person to person. Five broad but distinct styles can be identified.

1. Historical or Chronological : 

This is the most common style which presents information in chronological successions indicating all dates and periods of study, degrees obtained and work experience . It emphasis the candidate's saleable assets, talents and abilities by way of educational back ground, Job experience, membership of professional societies/organizations etc.

2. Functional :

This emphasizes qualifications and abilities in terms of job titles and responsibilities. It highlights the significant areas and analysis the most significant function and responsibilities first. Each item is followed by a brief description of duties and expertise. Dates are generally omitted in this style and if given, they are not very conspicuous.

3. Analytical :

The analytical approach is particularly useful while a change in career goals is desired or attempted. The CV presents in chronological sequence the skills or abilities possessed by the candidate. Work history and educational qualifications are broken up into significant talents and each skill is listed separately. The main idea in this approach is to emphasize the skill which is valuable in more than one field by setting it apart from less significant skill (s) rather than placing all skills together.


When a person has experience or knowledge in varied areas involving many duties and responsibilities, the CV may tend to become unduly long if listing all of them in detail is found necessary. In such cases a synoptic / analytical approach is useful. This style starts with a synoptic description of the contents which are amplified in the succeeding pages. The disadvantages of this style is that the bio-data tend to become very lengthy.

5. Imaginative / Creative

This approach is distinctly helpful in displaying the literary or artistic talents in a person and is used in situations where creativity is called for.

CV being the first contact between the candidate and the interview board should be prepared carefully. It should be short enough to catch and hold the situation and long enough to say what it wants to, specifically and effectively. Its appearance would provide non-verbal clues to your personality. Finally, it is best to remember that "honesty is the best policy."

Preparation for Interview

The CV often serves as the starting point of the interview. The clarity of intent reflected in the career goals, and the preparation made by the candidate for the task at hand are the main points of examination at the interview.

The question that may arise out of the C V  are as follows :

1. Does the C V give a true and fair descriptions of the persons?

2. Do the thoughts and beliefs of the candidates match with what he has written in the C V?

3. Are the career objectives backed-up with adequate all round preparation? Can the claims be substantiated?

4. Is, the time span visualized by the candidate to attain his career goals, realistic?

Writing the Resume (Post G.D./Interview)

Writing a resume of the group discussion or interview is a very important part of the personality test. Obviously, the purpose of the resume is to serve as a confirmatory aid. It may carry some marks separately or the board may give its total marks after pursuing the resume. It also aids the board in assessing the candidate's ability to express himself in writing. At the same time his memory and selection of facts is also given a trial. The following points deserve special attention:

a). The candidate should not exceed the time limits provided to write the resume.

b). He should not refer to greetings and other preliminaries.

c). He should first jot down the important topics and then arrange them in chronological order.

d). The resume should be narrative and not in the form of questions and answers. What is required is the gist of the conversation.

e). The candidate should not hazard any opinions or draw any conclusions.

f). The resume should be factual with stress on significant points.

g). The chairman and members of the board are not to be referred to individually with regard to questions asked or observations made. The candidate should refer only to the board as a whole.

h). Use simple words and confine yourself to short and crisp sentences. Practicing resume writing after mock group discussions and interviews is the only way of achieving perfection.

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