Getting Started with CV Writing

You will need to construct a CV at some point in your life, whether applying for an internship or a full-time job. A well-designed CV will help you:

  • Initiate contact with a potential employer
  • Communicate your relevant qualifications and strengths
  • Provide information to personal and professional contacts who will write letters of recommendation or make phone calls on your behalf
  • Demonstrate your ability to write well, pay attention to detail, and present information in an organized and concise manner.


Since a CV highlights your relevant qualifications, it will consist of several sections. Most CVs contain the following sections:

  • name and contact information
  • education
  • experience (paid or unpaid)
  • activities
  • skills (foreign languages, technical)

Other sections may include publications, awards and honors, and presentations. Include these sections if you have more than one such item or if specifically asked by the employer.

Employers spend an average of thirty seconds initially scanning CVs. Presentation, if not clear, can stand in the way of your content. Keep the following in mind when producing your final copies:

  • Choose a high-quality font
  • Print your CV on a laser printer
  • Select heavy bond paper in a neutral color: white, off-white, ivory, pale gray
  • Use standard 21 cm x 29.7 cm A4 size paper
  • Use spacing, bullets, bold type, and italics to highlight key information
  • Keep the CV to one page. Margins can be as small as 1.25 cm all around and your font size should be 10-12 points


You can have your CV in three types. You may also consider accompanying your CV with supplementary documents.

This information is provided as a courtesy of Georgetown University's Career Education Center.

Additional Samples & other online resources can be found in the right side-bar of this page.