Preparing a CV

A curriculum vitae (CV) or resume has two primary purposes: to get you shortlisted for the position, and to provide discussion points for the interview.

Start by listing your contact details: your full name (make sure it matches your registration name); address (street, city, province, postal code); telephone and/or mobile phone; and email address.


Address, City, Province/State, Country, Postal/Zip Code   Phone Number   Email Address


This section conveys your clinical, research, teaching, and/or academic ambitions. Your career goals are helpful in projecting a proactive image and a good career objective can prompt employers to read your CV in a more positive light.

Tailor this section to the type of job that you are applying for. If applicable mention any special interests that you are interested in developing (ensure it will be possible in the position that you are applying for); list the type of clinical work that you want to become involved in; your academic ambitions (research projects, teaching involvement, and at what level); and/or your leadership goals.


Write a concise list of your qualifications, starting with your highest level of training/education (include the institution, city, country; and date range). List all credentials, including completion dates and/or other licenses held elsewhere.


Include the date of the awards, the granting organization, and the purpose. You may need to repeat some of this information later. For example, including a prize on the first page will create a good impression; repeating it later on will place it into context.


List the dates (month and year), job title, health authority name/hospital/employer name/practice, and practice lead/director.  Under each heading, describe your role, experience and proficiency.


This should include any experience with leading and or supervising of people and resources, including:

  • Leading program and/or community development projects.
  • Leading research teams.
  • Designing and implementing educational programs.
  • Representing colleagues on committees or leading meetings.
  • Developing and implementing new guidelines or protocols.
  • Recruiting and hiring staff.

You may wish to include experience outside of medicine. If so, keep it short and at the end of your CV, or divide this section into medical and non-medical.


Include all formal and informal teaching and mentorship/preceptorship of students. Mention the type of audiences that you have taught as well as some of the key topics. Employers will be looking for an awareness of a range of teaching methods so list the methods that you have used, such as formal lectures, informal/formal supervision, videos, etc. List any formal training received and courses attended. If patient education is a part of your job, include it in this section of your CV.


Indicate the year of each project, the title of any research project you have been involved with, and a short description of your role.


The list should start with the title, authors (note your ranking on the authors’ list), and relevant dates. Place the year in the left margin and the rest of the information on the right; or present each element on a different line for maximum readability. You could also separate your publications by category (e.g. peer-reviewed papers, abstracts, case reports, etc).

If you have a lot of publications (books, papers, thesis/dissertation, etc.) consider skipping some of the less interesting papers, abstracts, or cases. Your CV is designed to get you shortlisted; it’s not a complete biography.


List the year and the month of the presentation, and the audience location (i.e. conference, health authority, community). If you have made a lot of presentations, list them by type such as international, national, and provincial.


For each course, include the date, title, and organizing institution (outside of your foundational educational training). Include leadership, research, and teaching courses as well as clinical ones but leave out courses which relate to exam preparation.


Include involvement in any professional associations or work involving health policy.


Include relevant software programs such as Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, but don’t mention skills that you have limited experience with. Include all specialist software (such as statistics packages, and reference managers), and databases that you search for literature. Include experience with specific EMRs.


List all languages that you speak and write as well as your fluency (e.g. German - basic, French – fluent). If you speak several dialects, refer to them as a group such as “fluent in seven Indian dialects.”


Keep this section short and only include information that supports your career objectives. Mention volunteer work and list your hobbies/extracurricular activities. Include your community involvement and mention travel/cultural experiences, striking a balance between single and group activities.


You can state “References available upon request” or list three references. Bring a list of your references to the interview, including their full name, title, telephone number, and email address. Remember that references might be checked without your permission.