Most people assume that a resume or CV is all about work experience and how it related to the job opening one is applying for. Well, this is true for many applications - hiring authorities tend to be more interested in past work experiences of applicants rather than any other kind of information. However, it doesn't mean that it is true for all resume and it certainly doesn't mean that all other components of a resume are not important. First of all, having just work experience section won't get you a job as HR managers are also interested in your certifications, licenses, recent trainings completed and other educational programs. Secondly, if you are a student or recent graduate you won't have much to say in your work experience section. It is likely that education will become the primary focus of your document. That is the section we would like to address today in our blog series on resume writing.
How to List Educational Credentials on a Resume?
The first question is where to list this information. Some people believe it is better to place it before work experience while others think that education should follow one's professional experience. There is no universal answer to this question because it all depends on the circumstances as well as what you have to say in your resume. If your educational credentials and training appear to be more relevant to the job you are applying for than your work experience then it would make sense to put it first. Despite the interest of employers in what you did, they need to make sure you have knowledge that is relevant to the position opened. Therefore, your priority number one should be as relevant as you possibly can be.
If your experience is relevant as well then it is worth putting it before the education. So employment history comes first unless your education is more relevant to the job. When you know where to place your education information, you then need to choose what kind of information you should list under this section. In most cases, employers are not interested in every detail of your college experience. All they really need to know is the name of the educational establishment and degree obtained. You may also add the year of graduation. That stands for all educational establishments you were at. If you are a recent graduate you may want to highlight some coursework you did that is relevant to the job opening. What employers don't like is when applicants list their high school diplomas on the resume - that is not helping them to understand how you fit the requirements at all. Sometimes you may be concerned that your own educational credentials don't measure up to requirements listed in the job advertisement. In that case, you should emphasize trainings completed. The best way to do it is to create a separate list with the education section where you can highlight relevant trainings you have gone through.