Curriculum Vitae

Curriculum Vitae (CV) is your personal brochure. It gives you an opportunity to feature all the aspects that make you the perfect choice for a university. Curriculum Vitae will be listed as an admission requirement for all of the German universities. Although its role may not be as significant as when applying for a job (due to a number of other variables), it still is a very important document in your application. In this guide, we will assume that you are going to prepare your Curriculum Vitae from the scratch. Even if you already have a decent CV, we recommend you to follow this guide and update it and also tailor it to the needs of your target universities.

Before You Start

  1. Get your academic certificates, achievements, medals, etc. all in one place so that you won't forget to mention something which is important.

  2. Do some homework and determine what kind of candidate that your target university is looking for. You can go look at things like course details, research groups, Professor profiles etc. For example, if you're applying to TU Ilmenau (focus: Mobile Communications), you might want to include that summer internship at BSNL in your CV.

  3. Read this document to learn about the 'German' CV.

Reference Documents

  1. All the important academic and extra-curricular achievement certificates.

  2. Your publications, patents, experience certificates, language certificates, training certificates, if any.

  3. Your bachelor thesis details.

Step by step guide

There are a number of online tools that you can use to build your Curriculum Vitae. We recommend using Europass template to start off with. This is a pretty simple and nice platform to help you create or update your CV. Also since you are applying to German universities, it is better to use European CV format.
  1. Check whether you want to build a CV from scratch or update your existing CV. Decide if you want to do so online or in your PC.

  2. Follow these links to create or update your CV online. If you like to work on a PC instead (recommended), download the template and instructions here.

  3. Update your personal details. Include/exclude some sections and sub-sections to suit your academic and job profile. Match details to the target university profile. Do not exceed two pages.

  4. Once all the editing is done, cross-verify whether you have entered the correct details. Save the document in its original format and as a PDF file.

Frequently Asked Questions

Must-have information in your CV

1. Your work history
2. Educational background and earned credentials
3. Career summary/objective
4. Contact information
5. Foreign languages spoken
6. Any voluntary work done

Must NOT have information in your CV

1. Your religion
2. What you think you are good at unless you have sufficient proof
3. Mention of any activity without a proof

Your CV must have these following parts to stand unique

Identifying Information: In this area, add the basics such as,

1. Name
2. Date and place of birth
3. Telephone number and address

Place these information at very top of the CV.

Education and Academic QualificationsIn this area, add your academics such as


1. List of schools including durations
2. List of collages including durations
3. List of Universities including durations
4. Honors achieved
5. Academic group memberships

Employment History: In this area, add major jobs you were in such as

1. Current job including duration
2. Last job including duration
3. Achievements while working

Personal Information: In this area, add personal skills and accomplishments such as

1. Ability of you to speak or write foreign language
2. Achievements in the sports world
3. Special interests
4. Relevant hobbies
5. Special courses completed

There is no fixed length for a CV but it depends on one’s own information. However, many experts advice that CV should not cross more than 2 pages.

1. Not scannable
2. Section split across pages
3. Not structured in a chronological order
4. Content not tailored to the specific application
5. Using language that is unclear to the reader
6. Including course codes for everything you have taught
7. Inconsistent style of referencing
8. No page numbers
9. Overusing bold and italics

Follow the table for all the projects which you are undertaken

Name of the Project:

Duration:

Guide:

Technologies Used:

Description:

Notable achievements:

In the description area, write description of the project briefly (not more than 50 words) such as what it was and what was the result.

Repeat this format for all the projects where you have worked.

Trivia

  1. It is highly recommended not to use the Europass format as it is. Please make necessary modifications to make your CV look unique and not made from the Europass template.

  2. In general, your CV should be confined to two (A4) pages.

  3. Admission officer probably spends no more than 2 to 3 minutes scanning your Curriculum Vitae, so make sure it is clutter-free and easy to read.

  4. Do not forget to mention the timeline for the different events (recent first).

  5. Putting your photo in the CV is a quite common practice in Europe and a style that is well accepted. But it is left to your discretion.

Try not to become a person of success, but rather try to become a person of value

– Albert Einstein