4 controversial rules about CVs | Student Life | Student.be

4 controversial rules about CVs

Some rules about what should and what shouldn’t be on a CV are quite clear and irrefutable. However, some of them do not have a unique good answer. Keep in mind that every rule in this article has pros and cons so it really depends on everyone to follow them or not. You should also take into account the type of company you are applying for when you modify your CV.


1 or 2 pages?

  • The CV is supposed to be a summary therefore a lot of people think it should not be longer than 1 page.
  • As a student or a young graduate the question is a bit irrelevant. Since you presumably don’t have a lot of experience a 2 pages CV is too much. Only experienced professionals need 2 pages to fill their résumé but as we said, it is up to you.
  • There is one golden rule thought, 3 pages is to avoid under any circumstance! The important thing to remember is that you should be complete and clear; there is no need to go deep into details because that is what the interview is for.


Do I include a picture or not?

  • On one hand, some recruiters use the picture as a reminder: they associate the picture with the CV so in that case they appreciate the presence of a photo.
  • On the other hand, the picture makes it no longer possible for the recruiter to rely only on the competences; the CV is no longer anonymous. In that case we can consider the picture as an obstacle to the objectivity of the person who will read you résumé.
  • Anyway, some companies require a picture so sometime you don’t have a choice but if you do, choose itwisely: the ID photo is usually the way to go.


Do I need to mention my grades?

  • Some companies want you to mention your grades in your CV so they do not leave you a choice there. Others will think that your background and your experience is enough or they will prefer practical over theoretical knowledge.
  • Here again there is no universal rule. We can only advise you to check the job offer to see if they ask for your grades or not.
  • The only thing you should not do if you decide to include your grades is to lie because the recruiter will automatically verify the veracity of your statement.


Are my hobbies relevant in a CV?

  • Some recruiters really don’t care about your hobbies and they won’t even read it so you might consider including them as a waist of time and space on your CV.
  • Other recruiters pay great attention to your personality because they want to make sure you will fit in the team. In Start-ups for example, you have to work together all day long so interviewers tend to make sure you will get along with the rest of the team.  
  • If you decide to mention your personal interests prefer the ones that are relevant for the job in the sense that the competences developed doing it can be useful for the position. For instance, mentioning that you practice a team sport can imply that you are comfortable with working in a team.




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