Experience Section of Your Resume

In this section you can include employment, volunteer experience, internships, or academic credit experiences.

Use section titles to group your experiences by relevance:

RELEVANT EXPERIENCECAREER RELATED EXPERIENCEINTERNSHIPSADDITIONAL EXPERIENCE

Or, if it's all in your major:
SOCIAL WORK EXPERIENCEPUBLIC RELATIONS EXPERIENCE

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Within sections, experiences must be in reverse chronological order (most recent first).

NOTES:

Volunteer experience does not necessarily have to be in it's own separate section. For example volunteer experiences could be "Career Related," "Relevant," "Additional," etc.

The word "Employment" implies that you were paid. This is usually not the most important issue to emphasize.

THE HEADING

In the heading of each experience, you will include your title or position, the period of time that you worked, and your place of employment. If you didn't have a title (like "student intern"), or if your title doesn't describe what you did (part-time Postal employees have been officially called "casual workers"), it's okay to come up with your own, as long as it accurately reflects the position that you held.

There are many ways to list the heading for an experience.

Here is one that is recommend:

Sales Associate, December 2001- June 2002
PET ROCK ENTERPRISES, Tribble, Ohio
(text)
(text)
(text)

THE TEXT

This is the description of your experience. Employers want to know what you did at your job - what you learned, what you accomplished, that sort of stuff. They do NOT want a section where you state that you are reliable, creative, thorough, and perfect. SHOW those attributes through a job description, don't just TELL them. "Telling" is weak. "Showing" is strong. Use phrases that get right to the point. Employers often spend limited time when scanning a resume, so make your information pertinent.

Let's look at a poor example, and then we'll fix it.

Student Teacher, September 2002 - November 2002
PATASKALA SCHOOL OF ORIGAMI RESEARCH, Pataskala, Ohio
I was responsible for the class, and I taught students in math, English, science, and reading. Also, handled class discipline and did projects.

The heading is good, but there are some problems with the text. It is difficult to read, and it does not make clear the accomplishments of the teacher. Take a look at another way of writing it:

Student Teacher, September 2002 - November 2002
PATASKALA SCHOOL OF ORIGAMI RESEARCH, Pataskala, Ohio

  • Taught a class of 35 students
  • Developed lesson plans
  • Implemented developmental discipline in classroom
  • Coordinated science projects (one per month)

This is called "bullet format", and it is much easier to read than a paragraph. Employers will skim your resume, so if you can describe your accomplishments with statements that begin with skill verbs on the left side of the page, they can cover more of your resume in the 30 seconds or less that they allot during the first screening.

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