October 24, 2023
Table of Contents
Landing your dream teaching job starts with a standout CV. But what exactly should you include to capture an employer’s attention? How can you differentiate yourself in a crowded field of qualified educators?
From professional summaries to experience highlights, we've got all the answers to your burning questions.
What Should a Teacher Put on a CV?
Crafting a compelling CV involves more than just listing your educational background and work experience. To capture the attention of hiring managers, you'll need to showcase your versatility, competency, and passion for teaching. Here are some detailed pointers:
- Contact Information: This should be at the top of your CV, complete with your full name, address, phone number, and a professional email address. Some teachers also include their LinkedIn profiles or personal websites to further showcase their portfolios.
- Qualifications: Don't just list your degrees; provide context for them. If you specialised in a relevant field or conducted a research project that's applicable to the job you're applying for, mention it here.
- Teaching Philosophy: A succinct statement can speak volumes. Your teaching philosophy should encapsulate your educational values, your approach to classroom management, and your methods for student engagement. Make it personal yet professional.
- Certifications: Go beyond the basics. If you've completed additional training, seminars, or workshops that enhance your teaching capabilities, list them. These could include courses on special education, technology in the classroom, or advanced pedagogical methods.
- Skills and Competencies: List both hard and soft skills. Hard skills could include proficiency in specific teaching methods or technology, while soft skills could include communication, problem-solving, or adaptability.
- Awards and Achievements: If you’ve received any recognitions, like 'Teacher of the Year' or had a notably successful lesson plan published, mention these to add an extra shine to your CV.
- Extracurricular Involvement: This demonstrates your commitment to the broader educational community. Whether it's leading a school club, organising field trips, or participating in educational panels, these activities can set you apart.
- References: Include contacts who can vouch for your skills and effectiveness as a teacher. Make sure to notify your references ahead of time that they may be contacted.
By being comprehensive yet focused, you can develop a CV that not only checks all the boxes but also showcases the unique attributes that make you the ideal candidate for the job.
How to Make Your Teaching CV Stand Out
Crafting a CV that stands out in a sea of qualified candidates can be challenging, but it's crucial for capturing the attention of hiring managers and educational institutions. Here’s how you can elevate your CV from good to exceptional:
- Use Action Words: Opt for powerful, active verbs to kickstart your bullet points. Words like "implemented," "developed," "orchestrated," and "transformed" not only show that you took action, but they also imply positive change.
- Highlight Achievements, Not Just Duties: Go beyond listing your job responsibilities. Provide measurable achievements that demonstrate your impact. For instance, instead of saying "responsible for a literacy programme," say "Implemented literacy programme that improved student reading levels by 25% within one academic year."
- Tailor for the Role: Generic CVs seldom make the cut. Always customise your CV to align with the job description. Incorporate key terms and address the specific needs or challenges of the institution to which you're applying.
- Showcase Your Technology Skills: In the modern classroom, tech-savvy teachers are often highly valued. Whether it's interactive learning software, online assessment tools, or educational apps, showing your comfort with educational technology can be a big plus.
- Include Testimonials: Adding a brief quote from a previous employer, colleague, or student can add a personal touch and serve as a mini-reference within your CV.
- Opt for a Clean, Professional Layout: Use a clean, simple design with clearly defined sections and bullet points to make your CV easy to read. Remember, sometimes less is more.
- Add a Cover Letter: Many candidates underestimate the power of a well-crafted cover letter. A cover letter gives you an additional platform to discuss your experiences and passion for teaching in greater depth, providing a fuller picture of you as a candidate.
- Proofread, Proofread, Proofread: A CV with spelling or grammatical errors can severely undermine your credibility. Always double-check your document and consider having a colleague or friend review it as well.
For further guidance on crafting an effective teacher CV, check out our Comprehensive Guide on Becoming a Teacher. If you're preparing for interviews, don't forget to go through our Teacher Interview Questions to help you prepare.
Professional Summary: What Is It?
A Professional Summary serves as the 'elevator pitch' of your CV, offering a snapshot of your most valuable attributes as a teacher. Unlike an objective statement that focuses on your goals, a Professional Summary underscores what you can bring to the table. This section can be particularly impactful when tailored to meet the specific needs of the educational institution where you're applying. Here's how to make it compelling:
- Highlight Relevant Skills: Lead with your strongest qualifications that are directly relevant to the teaching role. Whether it's subject-matter expertise, curriculum development, or classroom management, make it front and centre.
- Showcase Your Experience: Briefly outline your teaching history, but focus on roles or achievements that are directly pertinent to the job you're applying for. Mentioning the age groups or education levels you've worked with can also be a plus.
- Align with Job Description: Take cues from the specific job listing. If the role calls for a focus on special education, language instruction, or STEM, for example, make sure your summary reflects your strengths in these areas.
- Add a Personal Touch: It's not just about qualifications and skills; your passion for teaching and educational philosophy can also be briefly alluded to, giving the employer a glimpse into your teaching style and ethos.
- Keep it Concise: A Professional Summary should be a short paragraph, not an extensive essay. Aim for 3-5 sentences that are clear, focused, and packed with essential information.
- Include Keywords: Utilise industry-related keywords that may be picked up by Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS). This can increase the likelihood of your CV being noticed.
- Proofread: Small errors in this section can undermine your professionalism. Make sure it's error-free to present yourself in the best light.
By aligning your Professional Summary with the job description and your unique qualifications, you can make a strong first impression. For more information on what makes an exceptional teacher, you may want to review our Teacher Job Description guide.
Crafting the Perfect CV Profile
While the Professional Summary acts as your CV's 'elevator pitch,' the Profile Section provides a more comprehensive look at who you are as an educational professional. This is your opportunity to set yourself apart and elaborate on unique elements that can't be easily conveyed in bullet points or brief summaries. Here's how to optimise this section:
- Teaching Style: Briefly describe your teaching methodology and approach. Are you a hands-on instructor who thrives in interactive settings, or do you excel at lecture-based teaching that dives deep into the subject matter?
- Subject Specialties: Specify your areas of expertise. Whether it's History, Mathematics, Science, or the Arts, make sure you underline your subject-specific skills and knowledge.
- Career Goals: Talk about your long-term objectives. Are you looking to eventually transition into a leadership role, or are you more interested in specialising further in your subject area?
- Value Proposition: Clearly state what sets you apart from other candidates. Whether it's your unique approach to classroom management or your experience with diverse student populations, highlight it here.
- Notable Achievements: While your 'Experience' section will cover the specifics, here you can mention any overarching successes or milestones in your career. Have you received any awards or recognitions? Mention them briefly.
- Personality Traits: Soft skills and personal traits are equally important. Are you compassionate, patient, highly organised, or an excellent communicator? These traits could be valuable in a teaching setting.
- Alignment with the School’s Philosophy: If possible, do a little research about the school or educational institution you're applying to. Tailor your profile to align with their values, mission, or any particular educational philosophies they advocate for.
- Call to Action: End with a compelling sentence that subtly urges the hiring institution to proceed further with your application. For instance, mention that you're eager to contribute to their educational goals.
- Proofread and Edit: The Profile Section is often the first thing recruiters focus on after the Professional Summary. Ensure that it's grammatically flawless and free of typos.
The CV Profile offers the chance to further narrate your professional story. Taking the time to get it right can strongly influence a recruiter’s perception of you, helping your application stand out in a crowded field.
How to Write Teaching Experience
The Teaching Experience section of your CV isn't just a record of your employment history—it's an opportunity to demonstrate your competence, versatility, and growth in educational settings. Here are some crucial pointers for optimising this section:
- Relevance Over Volume: While it might be tempting to list every teaching job you've ever had, it’s more effective to prioritise roles that are directly relevant to the position you're applying for. Focus on experiences that mirror the responsibilities, grade levels, or subjects indicated in the job listing.
- Chronological Order: Consistency is key; list your teaching roles in reverse chronological order, starting with your most recent job. This gives recruiters an immediate understanding of your current capabilities and responsibilities.
- Details That Speak Volumes: Instead of vague descriptions, offer concrete examples that illustrate your teaching skills and experience. For instance:
- Teaching Strategies: Did you employ flipped classroom methods that increased student participation?
- Curricular Initiatives: Were you involved in the development of a new course or curriculum?
- Student Engagement: Share specific instances where your teaching methods positively impacted student engagement or academic performance.
- Quantify Achievements: Wherever possible, use numbers to quantify your impact. For example, “Implemented a new reading programme that improved literacy rates by 20%.”
- Technological Skills: Given the increasing role of technology in education, discuss any experience with online teaching platforms, educational software, or other technologies you've used in the classroom.
- Collaboration and Leadership: Highlight any instances where you collaborated with staff, led teacher training programmes, or were involved in school-wide initiatives.
- Continual Learning: Briefly mention any additional training, workshops, or seminars you've attended that contribute to your role as an educator.
- Tailor Your Language: Utilise action verbs and terminology that match the language in the job description. This not only shows that you're attentive but may also help your CV pass applicant tracking systems.
- Professional Development: If you’ve mentored new teachers, led professional development sessions, or participated in faculty leadership, mention it. These are compelling indicators of your engagement beyond the classroom.
By following these guidelines, you'll provide hiring personnel with a richer, more nuanced picture of your teaching background, setting the stage for interviews or further discussions.
Best Teaching Experience Examples
The following examples illustrate not just what you did as a teacher but also the impact you had on your students and educational environment. These are compelling because they show you as not just a teacher but as an educator focused on outcomes, innovation, and support.
- Curriculum Development: "Developed a new math curriculum that improved student scores by 20%."
- Why It’s Effective: This example is potent because it shows you can assess a problem (low scores) and implement a solution (new curriculum) with measurable results (20% improvement). It demonstrates your initiative and skill in pedagogical innovation, as well as your commitment to improving academic achievement.
- Extra-Curricular Support: "Led after-school tutoring sessions to assist struggling students, reducing failures by 15%."
- Why It’s Effective: This highlights your dedication to student success beyond the standard classroom hours. Reducing failure rates by 15% demonstrates not just effort but effectiveness. It speaks to your capabilities as an educator who can diagnose issues and implement remedial actions.
- Technology Utilisation: "Implemented technology in classrooms, engaging students and enhancing learning outcomes."
- Why It’s Effective: This example showcases your adaptability and willingness to embrace modern teaching aids. Technology in the classroom can be a divisive issue; indicating successful implementation shows you can navigate challenges and optimise teaching and learning environments.
When listing your best teaching experiences on your CV, keep these strategies in mind: highlight your ability to innovate, show measurable achievements, and demonstrate your commitment to student growth and educational excellence. By doing so, you provide a complete picture of yourself as a versatile and effective educator, making your CV stand out in a competitive field.
Teacher CV Example
Crafting a compelling CV is essential for landing your dream teaching position. A well-thought-out CV showcases your skills, experience, and achievements, positioning you as the ideal candidate for the job. Here's an example that you can use as a template:
- Full Name
- Phone Number
- Professional Email
An enthusiastic and experienced English teacher with a proven track record of raising literacy rates and nurturing a love for literature among students. Adept at creating inclusive classroom environments that accommodate diverse learning styles.
- Classroom management
- Curriculum development
- Technology integration
- Student engagement
- BA in English Literature, XYZ University
- Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), ABC College
- Certified in Child First Aid
High School English Teacher, DEF High School, Anytown (September 2018 - Present)
- Curriculum Development: Created a comprehensive English curriculum in alignment with state guidelines that improved student literacy rates by 18% in standardised tests.
- Student Engagement: Initiated an after-school book club focused on underrepresented authors, resulting in a 25% increase in student participation in extracurricular literary activities.
- Classroom Management: Implemented positive discipline strategies, contributing to a 30% decrease in classroom disruptions.
- Technology Integration: Incorporated digital tools like interactive eBooks and online quizzes, which enhanced student engagement and allowed for more personalised learning paths.
Middle School Teacher, GHI Middle School, Othertown (September 2015 - August 2018)
- Student Motivation: Utilised a gamification strategy to bolster student engagement, resulting in a 20% increase in classroom participation and project completion rates.
- Inclusive Education: Collaborated closely with the special education department to adapt the curriculum and teaching techniques for students with varied learning needs, contributing to a 10% reduction in the drop-out rate.
- Parent-Teacher Relations: Established a bi-monthly newsletter and conducted regular parent-teacher meetings to discuss student progress, leading to improved student performance and stronger home-school relationships.
- Professional Development: Took the lead in organising teacher training programs in new educational technologies, elevating the school's overall technological competency by 15%.
- Awarded 'Teacher of the Year' at DEF High School for innovative teaching strategies.
- Published an article on "Innovative Literacy Techniques" in 'Educational Monthly.'
- Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certification
- Advanced Certification in Educational Technology
- Attended 'Modern Teaching Methods' Workshop, 2020
- Completed 'Special Needs Education' Online Course, 2021
Available upon request.
This example CV gives a rounded picture of you as a teaching professional. It does not just list tasks but shows how you achieved specific goals, solved problems, and made a tangible difference in your educational setting. It also demonstrates your skills in various aspects of teaching, from curriculum planning to student engagement and beyond.
Resources and Further Reading
To equip you further in your journey toward becoming an outstanding educator, we've curated the following useful resources:
- Become a Teacher: A Complete Guide
Dive deep into the nuances of choosing teaching as a career with this comprehensive guide. Whether you're a recent graduate or considering a career change, this guide provides an overview of educational pathways, certifications, and other crucial steps to help you become a qualified teacher.
- Teacher Interview Questions: What to Expect
Prepare for your upcoming teacher job interviews with our list of potential questions and suggested responses. This resource helps you anticipate what recruiters are likely to ask, enabling you to prepare your answers in advance and increase your chances of success.
- Teacher Job Description: Know Your Role
Understanding your job description inside and out can give you an edge during interviews and help you tailor your CV more effectively. Learn what educational institutions are looking for in their ideal candidates.
- Search for Teacher Jobs
If you're ready to take the next step, browse our extensive list of teaching positions across various educational institutions and levels.