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Careers - Writing My CV PDF Print E-mail

Writing My CV

The CV is how you advertise yourself to prospective employers. The employer's decision to call you for an interview is based on your experience and how you present yourself. Therefore, it is important that your CV is informative and professional. You can include more information than a resumé, e.g. project work, skills and achievements.

CV Examples and Templates

CV Layout

There are no strict rules for the layout of a CV, but CVs tend to include the following sections:

Personal Details
Name, Address, Telephone Number, Email Address

Focus mainly on recent qualifications, give the expected full title of your degree, show the structure and time frame of the course, give your overall results, mention the final year thesis if its subject matter is relevant to the job, showing the general skills gained from its production. Give a brief summary of your Leaving Certificate results but leave out your Junior Certificate results.

Project Work
Give a brief description of any relevant project work you have completed, particularly your final year project. List the title, your aim and objective, the process, methodology and specific techniques used, and your findings and recommendations.

Work Experience
You should include all your previous work experience, including work placements, summer jobs, voluntary work, any permanent or part time work. Describe the duties of the work and the relevant skills you have gained from it. Remember that even if your previous work experience is totally unconnected to the job you are applying for, you can use it to demonstrate your skills, qualities and motivations.

Avoid a straight listing of your interests. Instead show whatever skills or qualities you have developed. Mention any positions of responsibility you have held in clubs and societies. Employers often look for evidence of personal qualities in this section.

Include in this section those skills that you have acquired which you haven't mentioned already but which increase your worth to the prospective employer e.g. foreign languages, computer and keyboard skills, driving license etc.

Include both significant academic and extra-curricular achievements in this section.

Include the names, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses of two referees, one academic and one from your work experience. Always ask their permission first.


Check out Ireland’s official graduate jobs and careers website, it got a huge amount of resources to assist students and graduates with all career planning and job hunting.

Application Forms

Completing an application form is usually the first step towards getting that dream job!

How to complete an Application Form

When completing an application form you should remember that you are not only providing information, but you are also trying to convince the potential employer that you are the right person for the job. You should find out as much as possible about the job and work out how your skills and qualifications meet the requirements. Present the strongest evidence to show that you are best suited for the job.

Have in mind specific jobs and /or tasks that you have done which display suitable qualities. When answering a question, consider what it is the employer is looking for. Anticipating the huge number of applications the employer is likely to receive, it is important that you make a lasting impression.

The application form should be completed in as neat a form as possible, and should contain all the relevant information but no irrelevant information. Read each question carefully and follow any instructions given.

Examples of questions employers ask:

  • Describe a situation when, as a leader of a group, you directed its efforts, and how you gained commitment to achieve results.
  • How would your colleagues describe you in five words?
  • Describe the nature and extent of your commitment to working internationally during your career.
  • Describe an occasion when it was important that you were able to work with new colleagues who had differing views. What did you do? How did you ensure your ideas were listened to?

Handy hints

  • Always read the full application form through from start to finish before you complete the form.
  • Complete draft answers before you fill in the actual form.
  • Be positive, specific and relevant.
  • If any questions are not applicable to you then state N/A.
  • Do not leave gaps.
  • Make note of your user-name and password (if the relevant site uses this facility) to enable you to return to an incomplete application.
  • Keep a copy of the form for yourself to remind you of what you have written should you secure an interview.

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