When applying for a position as a lecturer, choose a suitable resume format for the specific lecturer position you are seeking. Your resume is a marketing tool that should speak to its audience. Rather than using a format you like -- or your last employer liked -- use one that will appeal to the current institution. This means that if you are applying for multiple positions, you should consider tailoring the format for each job. Evaluate the job description, paying close attention to verbs and qualifications listed as they are what you want to list on your resume.
Understanding the Audience
Research the institution you want to teach at. Read the mission statement and the school's vision. Check the school's human resource department website and see if it offers advise on applying to the school and the preferred resume format. Find out whether the school is a two-year or four-year school, public or private school and teaching- or research-focused school. This preliminary research clues you in to what the school will be looking for on your resume so you know which resume format will best showcase the strengths they seek.
The functional resume format might be an excellent choice if you are changing careers, do not have previous teaching experience or have varied work history. This format strategically places the most relevant information on your resume, so your teaching strengths and qualifications will quickly catch the reader's eye. Begin with your identifying and contact information. Then highlight important strengths and experiences, including transferable skills, in your summary of qualifications section. This can be a small paragraph or bulleted list of your top selling points. Transferable skills are those skills you possess that apply to all jobs. Include strengths that show you fit the school's culture, including skills working with specific student populations. Follow with your education in reverse-chronological order or order of relevance for the teaching position. Then include your work experience, listing only related paid or unpaid experience that adds value to you as a lecturer.
The reverse-chronological resume works for experienced lecturers. Begin with identifying and contact information at the top. New college graduates should list their education section at the top of their resume, listing highest degree first. This section is followed by an experience section. Experienced lecturers may want to switch this order, listing work experience and then education. All dates on the resume for your experience are ordered with most recent first; oldest comes last. You can create a mixed functional and reverse-chronological resume, and add a summary of qualifications section to the top that lists your strengths.
If you are applying for a lecturer position at a university or a research institution, a curriculum vitae or CV may be your best option. Ditch the resume altogether and create a history of your accomplishments. The CV is used in an academic setting and is much longer than a resume. It includes all the same information as a resume, but doesn't stop there. It includes additional categories such as publications, teaching awards, presentations and lectures, research interests, grants, teaching experience and international experience. If you are unsure whether the CV format is appropriate, ask the school's human resource department.
Sara Mahuron specializes in adult/higher education, parenting, budget travel and personal finance. She earned an M.S. in adult/organizational learning and leadership, as well as an Ed.S. in educational leadership, both from the University of Idaho. Mahuron also holds a B.S. in psychology and a B.A. in international studies-business and economics.