What is the difference between a CV and a resume?

resume vs cvThis is one of the commonly asked questions on Internshala and until recently even we, just like most of the other folks in the industry in India, used both the terms interchangeably thinking there was no difference.

But it turns out there is indeed some important and noteworthy difference.

In this excellent article, Jorgen Sundberg lays out the difference quite clearly and here are the excerpts from the article –

  • The key difference between a resume and a CV is in length. A CV (stands for Curriculum Vitae meaning Course of  life in Latin) is a 2 or more pages (generally 3-8 pages) long document which has in-depth details of your education, experience, achievements, awards, honors, publications etc in chronological order. While a resume is a concise summary (not more than 2 pages long) of your education, skills, or experience.
  • A CV is a static document (since it covers entire life history) that does not change with the position that you are applying to (though cover letter may change); while a resume is highly customizable document where you, depending on the type of internship/job you are applying for, may choose to highlight one particular aspect over another.
  • Apparently a CV is mostly used while applying for academic positions, research positions, fellowships, grants etc., while a resume is used everywhere else. Also it appears that a resume is more commonly used in USA and Canada while an European employer seems to prefer a CV

Now which one should you use?

In case of a student applying to an internship, I do not think there could be much difference between a resume and a CV; after all how much content is there to write about? And hence what we usually see is a hybrid i.e. a CV of about 2 pages :)

However, if you happen to apply to companies individually, do spend time in customizing your resume as per the company and profile you are applying to. While applying on portals like Internshala (where you do not have the flexibility of submitting different resumes for different internships), it may make sense to have a bit more detailed CV which covers all aspects of your profile but that still does not mean that you should include absolutely unnecessary info (such as your gender, DOB, parents’ details etc.).

Now this important question has been answered, if you would like an expert to review your resume and make it stand out, try Internshala Career Services

Image credit: – http://sucareerservices.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/resumecv.jpg?w=584

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