How To List Academic Achievements On A Resume
This in-depth article covers how to list awards on a resume. If you are looking for academic achievements, check out this detailed guide on listing academic achievements on a resume or our Career Center for more job seeker resources.
In an increasingly-competitive marketplace, sometimes it really can come down to the little things that we often overlook in resumes, such as awards and achievements, that may make a big difference.
The awards and achievements listed in a resume might be the final factor that can get you a callback for a job interview instead of being forgotten in their email inbox.
But just having an award or two on your resume isnt enough for hiring managers. You need to know what awards are actually important to employers, and how to list them in a resume, to actually get noticed.
While some job seekers may want to include every award that they have ever received in a lifetime of school, work, and extracurriculars, other applicants are a little hesitant to tell their life stories in their resumes.
The best advice lies between these two views: include awards that are relevant to you and the job post.
Awards that provide clear evidence of experience or a skill relevant to your target job will help you to stand out. But you have to be critical, selective, and detail-relevant when it comes down to deciding which awards to include.
This resume-writing article covers:
Choosing A Resume Style
Typically, there are two main resume styles to choose from: professional and creative. A professional resume sticks to the standard accepted format while creative resumes offer more flexibility.
For most students, a professional scholarship resume is often best. Since their education is likely one of their biggest selling points, it makes sense to order their resume sections as follows:
- Employment Experience
- Volunteering/Community Service
If your child doesnât have anything for one of those sections, feel free to omit it. Then, as they gain experience, they can add it back in accordingly.
Generally, creative resumes should only be used if your child is pursuing a career in a creative field, like graphic design. Options in this area can include creating a scholarship resume using formatting similar to an infographic or even doing one entirely on video.
However, even for creative positions, these resumes are a risk, as not everyone appreciates these formats. In fact, a recent survey showed that 70 percent of employers prefer a professional resume above all else, regardless of the job type. So, when in doubt, stick with the traditional approach.
In An Education Section:
Bachelor of Arts in Communication | University of Virginia | Charlottesville, VAExpected Graduation: Spring 2021
- Deans List, Spring 2019Fall 2021
- Jefferson Award, 20172021: Four-year full-tuition scholarship awarded for academic excellence in high school.
- 2021 Cavalier Speakers Award: Awarded by university faculty to the best speech given by a senior communications student based on both content and delivery.
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Why Is A Scholarship Resume Important
As a student, taking the initiative to create a scholarship resume can make it easier to fill out applications due to having all the information you need. It also allows you to assess what youve accomplished so far and use that knowledge to set goals for yourself either for personal fulfillment or to gain more of a competitive advantage for scholarships or jobs.
It can be helpful to have a scholarship resume ready when asking someone to write a letter of recommendation for you. Since it outlines everything important that youve accomplished so far, it can provide your reference with a reminder of the key areas they have the most experience working with you as well as give them writing prompts for the recommendation.
Should You Put Awards On Your Resume
Yes, you should put awards on your resume if they add to your relevant experience and qualifications. Awards are a great way to highlight your skills and expertise in a particular area, and theyre an excellent addition for entry-level candidates who may lack relevant experience.
However, if you list an excessive number of awards or include ones unrelated to the position youre applying for, it may come across as unprofessional. For example, if youre applying for a job at a marketing firm, then theres no need to put on your resume that you won first prize in your countys chili competition .
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When To Drop Items From Your Scholarship Resume
Not everything you add to your resume is âevergreen.â That means, over time, your child needs to remove certain entries to keep their scholarship resume relevant.
For example, high school students and college freshmen can list information about their high school. But, this item should be removed once they finish their freshman year.
Similarly, if they gain relevant experience in their field through internships or employment, they might want to ditch the information about the summer job they held as a sophomore in high school if it doesnât provide value on their scholarship resume.
The intention is to keep things clean, concise, and clutter-free, and to focus on details that are specifically pertinent to the scholarship to which they are applying.
Scholarship Resume Power Words
When writing a resume, your child needs to make every word count, and using power words on a scholarship resume is a great way to start.
Power words are especially impactful, so they help get the committeeâs attention. Plus, they speak to what your student has done in a meaningful way, providing more value to the reader.
To get you started, here is a list of some great power words your student may be able to use, depending on their experience:
Power words speak to actions more than capabilities, so have your child keep that in mind as they write their scholarship resume.
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How Should You List Awards On Your Resume
Once you know which awards to add to your resume, you can decide where and how to list them. As you consider your options, think about how important the award is to selling yourself as a candidate for the job youre applying for. You always want to make sure the most important information on your resume is easy to spot and understand by someone quickly scanning your resume.
How To Include Awards On Your Resume
When applying for a job, you can highlight awards or honours you’ve received for your work or academic excellence. Whether you just graduated high school or college or have worked in the professional space for years, showcasing your achievements will help you stand out in the hiring process. While every employer has a list of required technical skills, also known as “hard skills,” they also look for valuable soft skills. Awards can help demonstrate soft skills like teamwork, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. They can also help prove your abilities if you have little work experience on an entry-level resume.
You can follow these steps to include awards on your resume:
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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 .
Example Of A Flawed Award Description
2016 Salesperson of the Year Award Despite a slow start, I still managed to reach my annual target by increasing my amount of cold calls and by contacting existing clients to upsell/cross-sell.
As you can see, the good description gets to the point concisely, uses objective language, and backs the award up with quantifiable evidence. On the other hand, the ineffective description rambles on without a clear purpose, uses subjective language, and forgets to include factual evidence to support the award.
Here is an easy checklist for making sure youre describing an award on a resume properly:
- Did I use objective and fact-based language?
- Did I use evidence to support the award, such as measurable achievements or metrics?
- Did I keep the award description concise and relevant to the job post?
- Did I avoid rambling and avoid details that arent relevant or interesting?
- Did I avoid including irrelevant information?
- Did I avoid misspelling the name of the award or any words I used to describe it?
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Why Do You Need A Scholarship Resume
You begin applying to colleges. You enter scholarship competitions. Now there are many forms and questionnaires you must fill.
A resume for scholarships is very different from what we often consider it to be. A student resume for scholarships is not the same resume that you use for a corporate job.
It should be relevant and elaborate, but it should also fit the target scholarship application.
It can often be harrowing, and it is often easy to overlook the required information. However, once correctly assembled, it should present the information required on a tidy document.
Hiration’s online resume builder has pre-written templates with the necessary presentation ready for you to fill in the required information.
Your scholarship resume plays the first role in getting the targeted scholarship. While trimming a master resume down to 2 pages, you shall be able to understand the necessary modifications you can make with your profile.
Once your resume is compiled, you can refer to it as you fill out your college applications and your scholarship entrance forms.
With your scholarship resume in hand, you may rest assured that you will not leave out any vital information that could help you get your target scholarship or gain admittance to the college of your choice.
What Are Awards On A Resume
When applying for a job, it is acceptable and often recommended, to highlight awards or honors you’ve received for your work or academic excellence. Whether you just graduated high school or college or worked in the professional space for years, showcasing your achievements will help you stand out in the hiring process.
While every employer has a list of required technical skills, also known as “hard skills,” they also look for valuable soft skills. Awards can help demonstrate soft skills like teamwork, creativity and problem-solving abilities and are also great to include if you have little work experience and need to prove your abilities on an entry-level resume.
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What Is An Accomplishment
Accomplishments are relevant honors, achievements or awards that you earned for exceeding average standards in either academics, athletics, or in a work environment. Some examples of accomplishments are:
- Work related awards
- Promotions to leadership positions in your job
- Volunteer related awards
As you can see, the key is to provide an admissions director with relevant academic honors and achievements that highlight your particular background. Be sure to include other honors and awards as you see fit.
Assess The Purpose Of The Resume
Determine the purpose of your resume. Are you trying to gain entrance to graduate school? Are you applying for your first job? Are you well established in your career and looking to make a move to a new company? The format of your resume and what you include in each category will depend on the answers to these questions. Generally, those job seekers who are new to the workforce should include more educational information than work experience. Experienced workers should include more jobs than educational experience and honors.
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What Is A Scholarship Thank
A college scholarship thank-you letter formally and directly conveys appreciation to the providers of financial assistance supporting your education. Whether their award decision was based on academic merit, financial need or personal qualities, your demonstration of worthiness set you apart from untold numbers of other applicants. Although some scholarship recipients may be required to write a thank-you letter, it is often a personal choice that has no bearing on your entitlement to keep the award. But having nothing to lose is hardly a good reason to procrastinate or skip your note of thanks altogether.A well-written scholarship thank-you letter really can be as simple as weve tried to make it sound. Because a short letter will usually do just fine, the time you need to spend writing it is typically not long,
Before taking you through the simple how-to-write steps, alongside a scholarship thank-you letter template and example, well begin with the why aspect of thanking your scholarship donor.
Where To List Honors On Your Resume
When deciding where to place your academic honors on a resume, you have several options, including:
- Create a separate Awards and Achievements section. If youd like to display several academic achievements on your resume, add a separate section to ensure the hiring manager sees them. You can usually place this section directly below or beside a professional experience section.
- List honors in your education section. Another option is to create bullet points below each degree in your education section, which provides employers with a brief list of notable dates and achievements. This is most effective if you only have a few listings.
- Use subsections below each degree. It helps to organize your academic achievements and activities into subsections in your education section beneath each degree. You can relate these aspects of your educational background with one another and create a narrative of your college experience. Using this method, you would make a subsection for your honors and activities and list your most relevant and notable accomplishments.
Wherever and however you decide to list your honors on a resume, make sure that the placement is logical and well-organized. This helps employers learn about your qualifications and work ethic.
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Tips For Including Awards
Here are some tips you can use when adding awards on your resume:
Include recent awards: Include awards that are from a reasonable time-period. The older an award is, the less it can represent your current skill set. If you have been working for over 20 years, awards you won in high school are less likely to apply to your professional experience.
Be consistent: Make sure your formatting is the same with each award you list and that you are including all the same information. Use the same font and size across each award that you list. Make sure that the section shares the same formatting as the other sections of your resume. This helps your resume look clean and professional.
Avoid technical terms: A variety of people with different professional backgrounds may read your resume, so stay away from language that is too technical. For example, HR representatives are most likely screening your resume and they may not be as familiar with the technical terms as someone who works directly in the same field as you.
Use professional tone: This is a good rule for your entire resume. Make sure you are using a professional tone throughout your sections when describing your experience and the recognition you received.
Here are some examples of how to list awards on your resume:
Tips For Creating A Scholarship Resume
Here are a few additional tips for creating a resume that stands out among the rest:
- Save your document as a .pdf to lock the formatting. If you present a Word document, theres a chance the formatting will look different on the recipients screen than it did on yours.
- Do some research on the benefactor or organization from which youre striving to get a scholarship. When you know what the organization values most, you can subtly reference them in your resume objective to show that youre a prime candidate for the scholarship.
- List your references on a separate document. The list should include each references name, occupation, relationship to you, how long youve known them and a way to contact them. Always ask someone before adding them as a reference and let them know when you do so theyre not caught off-guard when they receive inquiring correspondence.
- Use no more than two fonts in your resume. The headings can be in a serif font, as long as its clear and legible, and the body font should be simple and sans-serif. Your body font should be 11-12 point with headings one point larger.
- Make sure your contact information is in the top header or very near the top of the page to ensure its visibility at a glance.
Creating an effective scholarship resume can be rather simple when you keep these tips in mind.
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Accomplishments To Put On A Resume
Before learning how to put a list of accomplishments for resume, job applicants should understand what a hiring manager or recruiter may view as one.
For entry-level applicants without enough experience or those still in high school or college those could range from education accomplishments like being on the honor roll to scholarships.
As we continue in this blog, you will see how this works when using an academic-driven field like the legal one compared to ones where education does not play as big of a role.
From there, you will see that accomplishments carry on passed your schooling. They turn into resume achievements. Those may include an association or membership award for an experienced applicant or an employee of the month for an entry-level one.
All of these types could go in an awards section resume, under work history, or as part of a professional summary.