Résumé Sections

No two resumes are alike.  It is important that as you construct your resume you choose categories that showcase the relevant experiences you have to offer an employer. These categories should be visually emphasized on your document using a combination of font size, bold, italics, and underline options.

The list below of potential sections is exhaustive and is meant for your consideration; it is not necessary (or recommended) to use all of the categories.

Contact Information

At the top of the résumé, include your full name, permanent and current address (if applicable), a telephone number that you want employers to call, and an e-mail address.

Objective

An objective statement summarizes the type of work desired and key qualifications. Tailor your statement for the specific position and indicate the strongest qualifications you have that matches the employers' needs.

Education

Include your school's name, location, degree type, graduation date/anticipated graduation date, major(s), minor(s), and GPA. If you have more than one degree, place the highest or most recent degree first. Within this category, you also have the option to list relevant coursework, study abroad, and academic honors and awards.

Experience

This section highlights experiences including: full-time, part-time, and summer employment; student teaching; internships; practicum experiences; and volunteer work. List your experiences in reverse chronological order. For each position, provide the company name, position title, location of the company, and dates employed.  For each experience, describe the work performed, contributions, achievements, and demonstrated skills and abilities. Use power verbs to begin each statement. When appropriate, use the technical or specific terminology and language of your chosen field.

Leadership

Include offices/positions held, organization name, dates, significant contributions,projects, and demonstrated skills and abilities. It is common to format this section in a similar manner as the experience section, including the use of bullet pointed descriptions.

Activities and/or Community/Civic Involvement

Include offices held, organizations, dates, significant contributions, projects, and demonstrated skills and abilities. This section is most commonly organized in a list format.

Honors/Awards

You can elect to put all your honors/awards in this section or split them between education and this category. Include the name of the honor/award and the date(s) granted. A brief statement describing the honor/award is optional.

Professional Affiliations

Content in this section often includes organizational memberships and offices held, projects, certifications, and licenses.

Military Experience

Include rank, service, assignments, dates, significant contributions/achievements, demonstrated skills and abilities, and reserve status.

Skills

This category commonly lists computer competencies and foreign language skills. You may also list any other job-related skills you would like employers to know.

Interests

This is an optional section that is typically included only if the interests support the objective and are career-related.

Content to Exclude from Résumés

  • Pictures of yourself (unless it is industry standard)
  • Reasons for leaving previous employers
  • Social Security Number
  • Salary history
  • Physical characteristics
  • Health or physical problems
  • Race, ethnicity, national origin, age, religion, etc.