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CV for Master’s Applications: 5 Steps to Enhance your CV
5 Steps to Perfect your Master’s Application CV | Brive

CV for Master’s Applications: 5 Steps to Enhance your CV

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First impressions are really important, so preparing the right CV for master’s applications is crucial in order to stand out from the crowd. The Curriculum Vitae, commonly known simply as CV, literally means “the course of one’s life”, so the information you include should serve as a statement of your academic and personal achievements thus far.

Although there is no one-size-fits-all guide for a perfect CV, there are definitely a few tips that can help you optimize your CV for master's applications.

How to write a CV for master’s applications

Writing a compelling resume or CV for your master’s application is the first step in your journey toward achieving your academic goals. The CV is a reflection of your knowledge, skills, and achievements but it can also demonstrate your dedication and hard work.

Following 5 simple steps may seem easy but it can be crucial for securing admission and achieving your goals, so make sure to enhance your CV and stand out.

1. Understand the requirements and tailor your CV to each individual program you apply

An academic CV intended for a master's application is slightly different than one you’d use to apply for a job position. Therefore, it’s crucial that you include all your academic achievements, as well as every piece of information related to the program’s requirements and expectations.

The goal of a resume or CV for master’s applications is to secure admission to your preferred postgraduate program, so it’s essential to highlight any relevant knowledge, skills, and qualities that can make a difference and contribute to your success!

Don’t forget to mention your work experience, internships, and involvement in volunteering events as they are valuable additions that demonstrate your motivation and willingness to contribute to a greater purpose.

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2. Use the proper structure and keep it simple

The structure of your CV is almost as important as the skills and qualities you’ll include in it. A well-structured CV containing concise and relevant information is certainly superior to a lengthy document that lacks details. Be sure to incorporate all the necessary sections, utilize bullet points for readability, and provide specific details beneath each section.

You can take a look at the following example to refer to.

Example CV for master’s application (sample)

Personal Information:
This section should include your full name and contact information.

Write a short text highlighting your career aspirations and motivation for pursuing this specific master's degree.

List your educational background in reverse chronological order. If you’ve taken courses relevant to your intended postgraduate program, you can include them in a separate section.

Research Experience:
Detail any research projects you have undertaken, including the topic, methodology, and outcomes.

Work Experience:
Include relevant work experience, internships, or part-time jobs, and emphasize your responsibilities and the skills you gained from said experience.

List your language skills, technical knowledge, and software proficiency.

Awards and Honors:
Mention any academic or professional accolades you have received, such as scholarships, or awards.

Extracurricular Activities:
Include any volunteer work, hobbies, or involvement in student organizations that demonstrate your communication, creativity, teamwork, or organizational skills.

3. Highlight your achievements

Once you have provided all the necessary information, you need to make sure your CV has something unique that sets it apart from the competition. A simple way to enhance your CV and boost your chances for admission is to highlight your achievements.

This can be done by prioritizing the skills and knowledge you believe are most valuable for your application, focusing on the measurable outcomes of your research or work, and using action verbs, such as “led”, “implemented”, and “achieved” to catch the reader’s eye.

After all, a resume is just a way to “market” yourself before you get to meet your future employer or the admission committee of the master’s program you’re interested in. So be sure to optimize your CV for university admission and the specific program you’re applying to.

Tip: A career consultant can help you effectively showcase your most compelling attributes.

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4. Demonstrate relevant and transferable skills

In today’s highly competitive academic and professional world, flexibility and adaptability are paramount. Consequently, presenting transferable skills on your resume or CV will most likely lead to a favorable outcome whether you’re applying to a master’s program or a company.

If your educational or professional background is considered "unconventional" or diverges from the field of study you wish to pursue at the postgraduate level, emphasizing your transferable skills becomes even more crucial. Doing so can significantly impact your candidacy and assist you in establishing yourself as an ideal candidate.

Transferable skills, apart from being a great addition to your CV, can help you advance your education and career. Communication, critical thinking, research, or leadership skills you’ve gained from volunteer work, academic programs, or previous employment can be very useful while studying for a master’s degree since postgraduate education is about including the students in the academic experience and encouraging active participation.

5. Proofread and spell-check your CV before submitting your application

Before submitting your CV make sure to carefully edit and proofread it to ensure everything is accurate and clear. Check for grammatical errors, typos, etc., and make the necessary changes that will enhance your CV even further. If you aren’t sure about your proofreading skills, you can also ask someone else to review it to catch any mistakes you might have missed.

Proofreading is essential to present a professional and memorable CV. This process requires patience and attention to detail but it’s a critical step toward securing admission to a postgraduate program.

The importance of a good academic CV

In conclusion, taking the time to write a good resume for master's applications can significantly increase your chances of standing out among the competition and securing a spot in your desired postgraduate program. By following the five steps outlined in this article, and taking a look at the resume sample we've provided you‘ve taken important strides towards creating a compelling academic CV for master’s applications that showcases your skills, experiences, and potential as a master's student.


Read more articles:

How to write a Personal Statement for Master's Applications

Letter of Recommendation: How to write and how to ask for one

How to write a flawless Cover Letter for Master’s applications

Why study in Canada: The 10 best reasons

College vs university: What’s the difference?

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