What To Include In Your Education Section
When reviewing a job posting or job description, be sure to look for educational requirements usually listed under “requirements” or “qualifications.” This information can provide insight into what the organization is looking for in potential candidates regarding training or certifications. You can then use this information to customize your resume for each application process.
There are specific details a hiring manager is looking for in your educational section that include:
- Your most recent degree, or education in progress
- The name of the school
- The location of the school
- Your field of study or degree major
- Graduation year, or expected graduation date
- Your GPA, if above 3.5
- Any academic honours or accolades
Your educational section is often the smallest part of your resume. Based on the job description, you want to provide varying amounts of detail, but an education section is typically 15-30 words. Customize your education section to reflect the requirements of the position. Ensure that your education section is truthful and accurate, as employers who complete background checks may also confirm your schooling.
Kicks Two Cents: How To Make Your Education Section Stand Out
Where To Position Education On Your Resume
So, should your education or experience come first in your resume?
Think of it this way:
The top third of the resume is reserved for your accomplishments that are most relevant to the job you are applying for.
So before you continue, ask yourself: Is your education your most relevant accomplishment?
The answer most of the time will be no. Work experience will be a more important requirement for just about any position above entry-level.
However, education can take priority in some particular cases.
Education comes first if youve just graduated from college and dont have relevant work experience to list. Imagine you are an employer and the first thing you see in someones resume when theyre applying for an entry-level marketing associate position is their summer job as a bodyguard at their local town pool.;
Its also wise to list education before work experience if youve recently gotten back to school to get a degree thats relevant to your potential job.
For example, if youre switching to a career in sustainable energy after having finished a related program, but have work experience predominantly in engineering, you would want your new education to be the first thing the hiring manager sees.
Getting a fresh MSc, Ph.D., or MBA is another case where you would want to highlight those degrees more than the work experience.;
Not sure if you need a CV or a resume? Check out our guide on CV vs Resume and learn whats the difference between the two .;
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Writing A Resume With No Education
Listen, you might think that you do not have an education because you did not attend college or university, but even if you did not finish high school there are many roles that are looking for other aspects of life learning than grades and certifications. Adding “education” on your resume might not be as hard as you think:
- List incomplete educational qualifications and even mediocre high school results
- What online learning have you been able to take on board?
- What lessons have you learned in your non-working life that might help?
Education comes at you every minute of every day. If you have not been a hit in the classroom, think hard about what skills you will need on the job and where you may have picked up those skills before. Don’t be embarrassed – it won’t seem desperate and you are simply demonstrating creativity. It will give you an advantage over those people who leave the education section empty.
Take a good look at the sorts of jobs that you are applying to. More of them than you think will be open to employing someone who doesn’t have a stellar education but does have the right attitude. If they do not demand certain educational qualifications in the job description, then you are likely to have some wiggle room.
Option : Describe Projects
Yet another possibility is to actually describe any course projects which are related to your target job. This can be a good approach for candidates who don’t possess much or any related work experience.
For example, a person who is aiming for a job with a focus on information technology might describe a programming project which involved the creation of a complex Excel database. If you received any recognition for the project, or an outstanding grade, you could also mention those.
Coursework in Information Technology
Casleton High School, Castleton, VAHigh School Diploma, May 2019GPA 3.9, Honor Roll Each Semester
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How To List Education On Your Resume
Employers want a clear understanding of a job applicant’s educational background when hiring for a position. Knowing how to list your education on your resume effectively can affect the positive impression you have on a recruiter or hiring manager. In this article, we discuss why it’s essential to include your educational history on your resume, as well as where and what details to have listed. We also review what employers look for, and provide specific examples for various educational situations to make the most of your academic background.
How To Write Your Resume Education Section
The education section is among the easiest to write. In most cases, you should be fine if you follow these basic steps:
You can use the following template to write your education section. Naturally, dont forget to only include information that pertains to the job you want.
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How To List Education On A Resume With Examples
The education section of your resume provides hiring managers with a detailed insight into your background and how it relates to the role. When written to reflect the job requirements, your education section can give you an advantage over other candidates. The best way to list your education depends on your work and academic achievements.
There are several ways to list education on your resume. Reading and understanding the job description can help identify the perfect location and level of qualification to include when applying to a position. Not all jobs need your full credentials, so you can check the job listing to see what the hiring managers are looking for. In this article, you can learn about how to list your education on a resume.
Where To Place Your Education Section
Either before or after your work experience section. It depends on your resume format and where you are in your career.
As with the rest of your resume, the rule of thumb is: always put the most important information first.
Are you a student or fresh graduate? Then remember: your education is still one of your biggest strengths. Naturally, you should play to your strengths and put your education section in a place where recruiters can immediately see it.
Place it near to the top of your resume; just below your resume objective/profile section.
Are you an experienced professional? Then you can place your education section anywhere on the page .
Just remember: you should always put the most important information first. At this point in your life, your education isnt nearly as important as it used to be. Because of that, it should probably find its place near the bottom of your resume.
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What Does And Doesnt Belong In The Education Section
Everything on your resume should have a single purpose: Demonstrating that youre a good fit for the position youre applying to. This means:
- Tailor your resume. Add or remove experiences and qualifications from your experience section as necessary to fit each specific role.
- If you don’t have much work experience: Expand your education section when you dont have a lot of work experience, or if the experience you do have isnt particularly relevant. On the other side, if your work experience is extensive or impressive on its own, anything else you add risks taking focus away from the parts you want to highlight.
- If youre a career changer, fresh qualifications can help bridge the gap between your old industry and the new role you want.
Dont waste space with irrelevant information. Its better to keep your resume brief even if its under one page than to pad it out with fluff.
Examples Of Education On Your Resume
Example #1: Standard
National Institute for Non-Profit Development San Diego, CACertificate in Grant Writing and Proposal TrackingMarch 2017
How do you list an incomplete PhD on a resume? How do you list an incomplete MBA on a resume? Some people might feel a certain level of shame at not completing a PhD or MBA, but there are often deeper reasons that are well worth exploring in an interview. Failure is a part of life and there is no shame in aiming high and falling short. If you are not exploring your past shortcomings in your interview, you are not fully exploring who you are. Be human, be humble and list it down .
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List Your Soft And Hard Skills
Take a moment to consider which skills make you a great fit for the job. Review the job description and highlight keywords that you have had proven success with in the past. Consider both hard and soft skills, as well as transferable skills you can use when changing careers or industries. Create a skills section with the keywords that are relevant to the employer. List any required skills like certifications or licenses first.
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Where To Place Your Resume Education Section
The best placement depends on what employers would value more: your experience or education. Theres no set rule for where to put it, but here are a few guidelines.
Place experience before education if:
- You have several years of experience related to your goal. Hiring managers will likely be more interested in your work-related accomplishments than your education.
Place experience after education if:
- Youre an upcoming or recent graduate or have a couple of years of work history.
- Youre changing careers and continued your education to support your new goal.
- Youre in an academic or scientific professioneducation is usually listed near the top of CVs.
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Adding Graduate School Or Doctoral Programs On Resume
- Graduate and doctoral students may feel inclined to always include this information; however, it is important to be wary of including too much academic information in scenarios where it may render you overqualified for the position.
- Graduate and doctoral information is more likely to come into play for candidates seeking higher level positions at the management level.
- For candidates seeking jobs in academic or scientific fields, a CV-style resume and longer-form education section providing higher level of details regarding graduate or doctoral programs may be necessary.
How To List Incomplete Or In
In-progress educationIf youre not finished with your degree, you can still include work youve done and when you plan to graduate. Employers are interested in what youre studying and any specific coursework or special recognitions relevant to the job. If youre still a student, place the education section just below your contact information and summary statement.
Be sure to include the following information:
- Name of institution
If appropriate, consider adding these pieces of optional information:
- Honors or other academic achievements
- Your GPA, if its a 3.4 or above
- Relevant coursework
- Extracurricular activities or organizations
Here are a couple of examples of high school and college student education sections for reference if this is applicable for your situation:
Waters High School | Waters, VAExpected Diploma, 2019 National Honor Society, Vice President
University of Kentucky | Lexington, KYB.A. in Accounting candidate | Diploma expected 2019Prominent Coursework: Intro to Risk Management, Actuary SciencesHonors: Member, Phi Mu EpsilonJohnson Academic Achievement Scholarship
University of Alabama | Birmingham, AlabamaCompleted Coursework: Calculus, Accounting for Nonprofits, Finance 101 & 102
General Education Development CertificateCertification in Grant Writing, Notre Dame Online
Valley High School | Valley, MaineProfessional Development: Online Coursework on Photography Basics, Advanced Photography, Photography in History
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Items To Include For Education In Resume
The top 4 items are must-haves. The rest will give you an edge over other candidates.
However, if you’ve got X years of experience, mentioning those extra items will look awkward as your experience is what matters to employers .
And, dont weaken your resume education section with these:
How To List Your High School Education On A Resume
If you never went to college, your resumes education section is going to be pretty straightforward. All you have to do is list the name of your high school, its location and the dates. Theres no reason to complicate it any further.
That is, unless youre less than three years out of high school. Then you can add anything that shows off your skills and achievements.
- Add achievements. Include awards, extracurricular activities, honors, clubs and organizations you joined during high school.
- Stay relevant. Only include information that pertains to a specific job opening. Keep an open mind and remember that transferable skills can make a huge difference too.
Feel free to include details about any projects or clubs you joined while at school. Focus on including specific examples to demonstrate your motivation and initiative.
Did you write for high school newspapers and published 16 articles? Then it deserves a mention in your education section!
The bottom line is simple: Look for anything that helps you show your enthusiasm and work ethic.
Think of clubs, organizations, extracurricular activities or even volunteer work. All of these can count as a major achievements if you dont have any other; experiences yet.
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How To Write A Resume Education Section If You’re A Student
As a student, you should place your education section at the beginning of your resume. Whether you already have some experience or not, employers will be interested to know that youre still a student.
Include information about your extracurricular activities, relevant coursework or studying abroad.
Is your final thesis related to the job youre pursuing? Then you should mention it! Explain how it pertains to the job opening.
Internships. Paid or unpaid, it doesnt matter. The most important thing is that you can show youre motivated and willing to work.
If you havent done any internships yet, its high time you applied. In most cases you dont need any previous experience to get one and it can help you acquire many valuable skills. Moreover, its something that will distinguish you from your peers once you start looking for a job after graduation.
Finally, if youve already got your first degree, you can leave your high school degree out.
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