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Career Development

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Resume Examples


Lists experience and education in historical order with the most recent experience first working backwards. Very traditional, and generally the easiest to write, but emphasizes dates instead of skills or accomplishments. Most useful if you have a history in the field for which you are applying, not if you are just starting out, making a career change, or have any gaps in your work history.


Emphasizes job titles, especially those relating back to the one for which you are applying. Specific dates play a minor role as experience is highlighted by importance rather than historically. An especially good form if you have previous experience relating to the job for which you are applying or job titles indicating increasing levels of responsibility. Not particularly useful if you haven't any relevant experience that can be captured in job titles.

A twist to this format is to highlight the names of the companies and organizations where you have worked. This format is for those who have worked in well-known firms or in organizations related to the position they are applying for. For example, if you are applying for a newspaper reporting position, you highlight the Oregonian, where you did your internship, the Bend Sentinel, where you had a summer job in the classified ads department, and KSLC where you conducted interviews and wrote public service announcements for a class project.

Functional (no example included)

Concentrates on skills, abilities, and accomplishments regardless of where or when they were developed. Great if your achievements or skills are more impressive than job titles or length of experience. Allows you to categorize accomplishments and use them to directly support your career objective. This style may be particularly effective for those who are just starting their professional careers, changing careers, or reentering the job market.


Many resumes are really a combination of styles. Don't be afraid to try several styles before deciding which you like best. You may also find that if you are applying for more than one kind of position that you may have a different style for each. One Linfield student, applying for a retail management training position, had absolutely no relevant work experience. He highlighted his college activities instead, which included being president of this, team leader of that, etc. The employers loved it - he had a job lined up before he graduated!

Imaginative (no example included)

Ignores tradition. Good if you are applying for a job related to art or graphic design where your creativity would be considered a plus. Not so good in most other fields as it may be considered flippant by employers. An imaginative resume includes the same basic information as other styles but may also include a graphic design, logo, headlines, or the use of an unusual color, size, or fold of paper.

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