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Gaps in CV

 
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naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 9001
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2003 6:48 am    Post subject: Gaps in CV Reply with quote

My contract will be ending early next year and I'm already thinking about travelling Asia for a couple of months before getting another job somewhere in Taiwan.

My question is, should I explain the gap between jobs on my CV? It will be at least three months, probably four because I have to visit people in the States. Should I create a section called travel experiences or something like that?

Any suggestions?
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dyak



Joined: 25 Jun 2003
Posts: 630

PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 11:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why not base it on a ‘French’ style CV? It’s far more realistic and targeted at the job you’re applying for rather than the ‘concise life story’ approach. It has the following categories:

Name
Address
E-mail
Date/Place of birth
Marital Status
Nationality
Qualifications
Current/Previous Job
Other information – where you write about your experience relevant to the job you’re applying for.
(And a nice picture in the corner of course)

All the information they need is there, gap free, and on one page. I can’t believe there are that many employers (especially in the ELT world) that will scrutinize entire CVs to make sure the dates match up. And as my DOS once said,

'The only thing I look at on a CV or resume is whether they have a TEFL certificate and whether they have experience, I form two piles then I call them.'
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Cobra



Joined: 28 Jul 2003
Posts: 436

PostPosted: Sun Aug 31, 2003 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Short gaps in a CV are not that important and certainly do not override good credentials. They can always be explained in an interview if the employer brings them up.

Maybe you are concerned due the 18 minute gap in the Nixon tapes? Very Happy But that gap was a different story! Shocked
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Glenski



Joined: 15 Jan 2003
Posts: 12844
Location: Hokkaido, JAPAN

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dyak,

What is the "French style"? I see exactly the same information as my "American style" resume. Perhaps the difference is what you list after the current employment (what you have labeled as "Other information").

How is this "other information" written for the French style resume/CV? If it is in paragraph form, I would highly discourage it, because it is too difficult to read (and it is a forbidding piece of material for any non-English speaking reviewer).

Moreover, for people who have held more than 2 jobs, it is not always that easy to fit the whole resume on one page. I envisage "other information" stretching to a second page in many instances.

I agree that most employers won't look at the gaps in work history very carefully, if at all. Explaining them in the interview, as Cobra stated, is what I would consider a normal course of events.
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khmerhit



Joined: 31 May 2003
Posts: 1874
Location: Reverse Culture Shock Unit

PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2003 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had several interviews in the past few months -- only one of them went into detail about my job history, and that was about my overseas experience. All they want to know is what is relevant to their hiring needs; then they test your ability by asking questions and setting up teaching scenarios. Then they give you a tour of the building!
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MELEE



Joined: 22 Jan 2003
Posts: 2583
Location: The Mexican Hinterland

PostPosted: Tue Sep 02, 2003 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your cover letter is a great place to explain this especially a recent gap. (Or anything that might not be explicit on your resume)
Something like, I've spent the last four months touring Asia, an experience I will never forget, and I'm now ready to settle down into a new job.
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Ben Round de Bloc



Joined: 16 Jan 2003
Posts: 1946

PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Does traveling really mean diddly-squat in the classroom?

- Sunaru


Whether or not travel experience should be included on a CV is a matter of individual choice, I think. The topic often comes up in interviews. Personally, I like MELEE's suggestion of including it in a cover letter.

I believe travel experience often adds to an applicant's chances of getting hired and can provide a source of interesting information to share with students in the classroom.

In an interview, all other things being more or less equal, if one applicant has never been more than 100 miles from his place of birth, while another applicant has traveled extensively, I imagine the interviewer would lean towards the more experienced traveler.

I've found that students often want to know about other countries and cultures. If a teacher has traveled extensively throughout his own country and/or visited some foreign countries, the teacher's travel experiences can provide a rich source of interesting information to share with students.

An added note: For most ESL teaching jobs in the U.S. at community colleges, in university ESL programs, and at other institutions of higher learning, an applicant who lacks overseas experience (either teaching abroad or extensive travel experience) is pretty much out of the running.
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misteradventure



Joined: 18 Aug 2003
Posts: 243

PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2003 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Having worked a variety of jobs, I usually have a category called "Relevant Experience" and list relevant work there and have a tag line stating I've also worked in the following fields:.....

I've also been self-employed as a Consultant, which is also my current title, though with another employer.

The cover letter is a great idea. I would phrase it more along the lines of "refreshing my accent" or something like that, especially if you state that teaching while immersed in a non-English culture may have introduced unusual speech patterns and expressions. Try explaining to people NOT from Oz about 'walkabout'.
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