- Keep it short. It may be tempting to show all the great things you’ve done over the years, but the truth is, nobody is going to want to sort through everything you’ve done in order to find what’s relevant. Save those résumé reviewers some time and narrow it down yourself! Try and keep your résumé to about 1-2 pages in length and include only those experiences that are applicable to ESL teaching.
- Pay attention to format/style. You’ve put a lot of effort and thought into your résumé, so make that clear with its presentation. Use a professional-looking font, divide your content into categories with titles (Objective, Education, Relevant Experience, etc.), and keep your formatting consistent (font size, line spacing, use of bold/italics, etc.).
- Include all contact information at the top. Make things simple. By including your contact information at the top of your résumé, it’ll be easy for employers to contact you. This matters when they are browsing hundreds.
Avoid being overly descriptive by taking a step back and thinking about how you can portray what skills you gained/responsibilities you had in a position accurately without going into tons of detail. Remember that if the reviewer would like to know more about a particular experience, they will ask for details in your interview.
- Use action verbs. Using action verbs helps with concision—no need to make descriptions full or lengthy sentences. Provide a brief description of the position and your specific responsibilities, starting each description with an action verb. Ex. Volunteered in an English classroom by working one-on-one with students to aid with reading and writing skills. A good list of such verbs can be found at About.com.
- State your objective. Include a one-sentence statement about what you’re looking to do/gain from your ESL teaching experience. Answer the question why do I want this job? Be specific to where you’re applying. If you’re looking to teach ESL in Singapore, tailor your statement so that it expresses why this program specifically interests you.
- Put relevant experience first. Capture attention by focusing on what experience is most relevant and putting that first. This makes it easy for reviewers to see what makes you a strong candidate for the position.
- Sell your strengths. This is the key to résumé writing. Remember that the whole purpose of résumés is to essentially sell what you’ve got and prove that you will succeed in ESL teaching. Focus on what skills make you a strong candidate and promote them.
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