CVs and Cover Letters for New Teachers

CVs and Cover Letters for New Teachers 1
CVs and Cover Letters for New Teachers
Curriculum Vitae (CV) and Résumé are the two names
usually given to the professional document used as part of the
job application process. The term CV rather than Résumé will
be used throughout this CV for convenience. Your CV will
describe how your qualifications, skills, experience and
personality make you a suitable candidate for a particular
teaching position or other opportunities such as a traineeship
or scholarship. It is designed to get you interviews and if it
doesn’t achieve this, see a Careers Consultant. A CV is
essentially a self-marketing tool that demonstrates to the
reader that you are worthy of serious consideration as a
potential employee. It is a document that will need to be
regularly reviewed if it is to keep pace with your professional
There is no 'correct' format for a CV and so each person that
you ask, and each book you refer to, will have different
advice on content and layout. Employers also have their own
ideas and preferences and whilst it is a challenge to produce
a CV that will always impress, this is achievable and
should be your goal. This handout will assist you in the
preparation of your teaching CV by providing advice on how
to assemble the information needed for good quality content,
organise the content for maximum impact, layout the CV so
that it looks professional, and submit a CV by email. This
handout also includes a sample CV and Cover Letter.
Making Personal Contact with the School
and Early Childhood Centre
For most work areas making direct contact with the employer
is optional and may even be discouraged, but in teaching a
school or centre visit, prior to making an application, can
be an important part of the application process. If the
school or centre is local, try to arrange time for a short visit. A
well-timed, fifteen-minute visit can be sufficient to create a
positive impression, view the physical environment and
observe students and staff interactions. After a visit you will
be better placed to decide whether to proceed with an
application. If a visit is not possible aim for a chat over the
phone with the school principal, head of department, head
teacher or supervisor.
Set some objectives for the contact. What is your reason
for making contact?
Do your homework beforehand and read the ECE
centre’s or school’s ERO report and visit their website.
If appropriate provide brief information about yourself
beforehand via email.
If appropriate organise a folder with your CV, academic
certificates and letters of reference to take with you.
Carefully note the name of the person you will be
meeting. Greet your host by name. A handshake and
small talk establishes rapport.
Re-state the purpose of your visit and keep to the time
you asked for. Take brief notes.
Thank them for their time. Send a thank you email or
Creating Your CV
To develop an effective CV, you need
detailed, reflective information about
yourself to draw from. The following
self-evaluation exercise will help you to
start writing down the information you
need and will take at least two hours.
It’s probably best to do it on paper but
you could create a word document and
then copy and paste information from it
into a CV template. Create a list of all
your education, work, community
and leisure experiences, leaving plenty
of space between each item. Your next
task is to add the dates for each
experience and describe briefly, using
bullet points, what you did, how you
interacted with anyone else involved
e.g. your peers, team members,
supervisors or other third parties, skills
you developed and any ‘proud
moments’ or achievements.
At this stage write everything down
even if it seems irrelevant. Not all the
information collected in your
brainstorming exercise will be used in
every CV you submit but you should
store this information as a resource for
customising your CV and as a
preparation tool for interviews.
Consider where you’ll store this
Victoria CareerHub is available to all
students and Alumni of Victoria
University and could be an ideal place
to do this. There is more information
in a later section of this handout.
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