How to Differentiate Between Curriculum Vitae (CV) and a Resume

The term “Curriculum Vitae” (CV) is often used synonymously with “resume”; however, in certain instances, it regarded as a separate document, each having its unique features and functions.

What is a CV?

Absolutely, a CV intricately outlines your career path, delving into personal details and serving as an exhaustive record of your accomplishments, including publications and achievements. To keep it current, updating becomes essential with every academic or professional milestone achieved, whether it’s securing a new position, publishing fresh work, or acquiring additional certifications.

Moreover, there’s no fixed length for a CV; its size varies depending on one’s experience, stretching anywhere from 2 to 8 pages.

What is a Resume?

A resume serves as a concise document tailored for a specific job application. It is typically not more than one page, it may extend to two pages for candidates with over 15 years of experience or when additional crucial information can enhance the application.

Focusing on pertinent work experiences and applicable skills, it strategically highlights achievements relevant to the targeted role. This ensures a clear alignment between the candidate’s capabilities and the job’s requirements.

Accompanying the resume, a cover letter complements the provided information. It further elucidates how the highlighted skills and experiences are pivotal in excelling within the desired position.

Differences between Curriculum Vitae and a Resume


The fundamental divergence between a CV and a Resume centers around their length. A Resume maintains brevity, presenting a condensed version, usually contained within a single page. Conversely, a CV adopts a more extensive approach, offering a comprehensive overview that can span between 2 to 3 pages, depending on the depth and breadth of your experience.

READ ALSO  How to Ace IELTS Speaking Test


The CV finds its primary application in academic circles. Notably, when seeking entry into research programs, pursuing a Ph.D., or aspiring to join university faculties.

In contrast, a resume is customarily crafted for the corporate world, catering to various job prospects across different industries and organizations.

Type of information you include

The CV functions as a comprehensive academic dossier, encapsulating an individual’s complete academic journey, including qualifications, achievements, and certifications. Its nature is universal, allowing continuous updates as one progresses.

Conversely, a resume demands tailored creation or customization for each job application. Emphasizing professional accomplishments over academic details, it pivots towards the specific requirements of the desired position, allowing for a more targeted approach.

  • A resume offers a concise summary, typically one page (maximum two), focused on relevant work experience for a specific job application.
  • Conversely, a CV is an extensive academic document encompassing all experiences, certificates, and publications.
  • The distinctions lie in the resume’s brevity and adaptability for all industries versus the CV’s lengthier format, primarily utilized for academic positions and admissions.
  • Furthermore, resumes are tailored for specific job applications, while CVs provide a comprehensive overview of an individual’s academic journey.

Experience/career type

Resumes are used when applying for jobs in the private or public sectors which are often referred to as “industry positions” in contrast to academia. In contrast, you quse CVs when applying for academic roles or programs, grants, fellowships and research or teaching positions.

However, you may have a CV if you’re currently applying. You must have graduated from a master’s or doctoral program. If you work as a professor or researcher at an academic institution, you need a CV.

READ ALSO  How to be assertive when Writing

Geographic location

In the United States, resumes and CVs are two distinct documents with different functions. Conversely, in the UK, New Zealand, and parts of Europe, employers refer to both CV and resume-style documents as “CV” and do not use the term “resume” at all.

On the other hand, in South Africa, Australia, and India, the terms CV and resume are often used interchangeably.

Nonetheless, having understood the distinction between a CV and a resume, it’s now your call to determine which best aligns with your objectives and job search strategy.

In a mere 5 minutes, you can craft a professional, sleek CV or Resume. Simply explore our diverse template gallery, and by selecting the format that resonates with you, streamline your job application journey. Let’s embark on this journey together and make it a seamless and enjoyable experience!

The Academic Hive webpage offers you top-notch tips on how to differentiate between curriculum vitae and a resume. We also offer Consultancy Services, book a session today.

Verified by MonsterInsights