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Where to start? Resume? Cover Letter?
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MoggIntellect



Joined: 04 Apr 2003
Posts: 173
Location: Chengdu, P.R.China

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 1:54 pm    Post subject: Where to start? Resume? Cover Letter? Reply with quote

Hi. I have been finished my CELTA training for over two weeks, and I have still not completed a resume and a cover letter. I have heard there are web sites that can help, but they don't seem to be ESL specific. I've had no experience and so resume building at this point has become tedious and very depressing. Sad One reads the job listing and they ask you to list all of your experience and so on, and it's very intimidating. I also remember reading on Dave's about how vital the resume and cover letter are, and so I don't want to mess it up!

Does anyone have any advice as to where to start?
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rogan



Joined: 03 Mar 2003
Posts: 416
Location: at home, in France

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 2:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I have been finished my CELTA training for over two weeks


You're probably going to have many more problems if you ever get a job.

From what you yourself have said:-

1 " have been finished" ???????????????
2 You obviously can't self motivate.
3 You have difficulty planning and organising.

I hope not too many recruiters read your post.
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MoggIntellect



Joined: 04 Apr 2003
Posts: 173
Location: Chengdu, P.R.China

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not quite the constructive help I was seeking. I haven't been sitting around doing nothing. I have compiled many drafts of resumes and cover letters, but they don't seem to be quite as I think they should be. What is wrong with seeking out help? And what is so terrible with "have been finished"?

I apologize if I don't seem motivated enough, do you want me to do laps or push ups? I have a full time job as well as seeking ESL employment, so I don't see that your rather harsh comments are completely founded.
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M.K.



Joined: 01 May 2003
Posts: 57
Location: neither here nor there

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't understand why people waste their time posting discouraging messages like the one above Rolling Eyes
Your question is valid, and I understand your frustration as I'm currently working on updating my resume (aka CV, as it is known just about everywhere but the US) as well. I have no experience yet, and have not even taken the CELTA (will do that in August), but as I'm taking it in another country I figured I'd try to have a resume and cover letter ready to take with me.
My advice, from the information I've gathered on sites like this, is to list ANY kind of relavant experience you may have. Maybe you've spent some time tutoring fellow students while in college, or maybe you worked as a camp counselor one summer. Maybe you've helped train new employees at a past job. I think just the fact that you have a CELTA should work to your advantge, so put it near the top of your resume. You may want to also list your best qualities. Schools look for things like an outgoing personality, energy, a positive attitude, and a good work ethic. If you can explain on your resume how you've demonstrated these qualities in past employment, that would be helpful.

Hope this helped at least a little bit. Best of luck to you! Very Happy
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andrea



Joined: 19 Apr 2003
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

m.k. has given you some good advice. i would agree with listing the celta towards the top - since you have no teaching experience i would definitely go with listing all your education at the top. this is what i did, and it got me a job (i have no experience but have a b.a., well, almost, and will be getting a celta this summer) i would also list any language experience you have - i listed german, spanish and philosophy of language courses i have taken. i would also list non-esl work experience since it does show that you're a responsible and mature human being and all that.

and as for the "have been finished"...i don't like it when people rag on other posters for things that are probably just typos, but since you don't seem to see the problem...it's not really a problem with "have been finished" per se, it's that you forgot the word "with" after those three...should have been "i have been finished with my celta..."

ok, that's all
good luck Cool
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ls650



Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 3484
Location: British Columbia

PostPosted: Tue Jun 10, 2003 3:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Where to start? Resume? Cover Letter? Reply with quote

MoggIntellect wrote:
I have been finished my CELTA training for over two weeks, and I have still not completed a resume and a cover letter. I
Does anyone have any advice as to where to start?


Wow - what's with that one nasty response? Sheesh! Rolling Eyes

I would recommend taking a look at www.tefl.com ...
You'll find some sample cover letters and resumes that will offer you a lot of helpful hints. You'll also find many postings for new jobs, particularly in SE Asia. If you are willing to go to China, Korea, Taiwan or Indonesia for a one year contract you'll have no problem finding a job.

If you have a CELTA/TEFL and/or a bachelor's degree, you should have no problem receiving school responses. I put my resume up there and within a day I received about 30 interview requests. I was able to send a reasonably well-written cover letter and CV to various schools in the country I was especially interested in.

As for interviews, I would draft a set of questions you're likely to be asked and jot down some answers.
For example, why do you want to work in country X? (I want to experience a new culture and X seems like a wonderful country to find new people and places, blah blah)
Tell me about a previous teaching experience you've had (this can be tutoring someone in high school, etc.)
How will you handle being away from your family and friends for so long? etc.

I made a set of 10 questions and answers up just like this and used it for all my interviews. I did several interviews before receiving a solid offer and not one interviewer asked me a single question that I hadn't already thought of an answer for.

Make sure to ask schools that want to interview you for references from teachers that have previously taught there. A reputable school will have no problem with doing this, and it allows you to get the "inside scoop" from someone who is teaching or has taught there.
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rogan



Joined: 03 Mar 2003
Posts: 416
Location: at home, in France

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, what an old cynic am I.

God advice about preparing replies to possible questions,
but,
................................... !!
I can't help thinking about callow youth and insane optimism.


I wonder why it is that young, (soon to be CELTA-ed) teachers object so much when they get replies that they don't want to hear.

It may not be the reply that you wanted, but that's often the way it is.
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MoggIntellect



Joined: 04 Apr 2003
Posts: 173
Location: Chengdu, P.R.China

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks to all of you for your great advice.

Rogan, I guess in all your years of experience you never learned the tool of tact. As for your criticisms, I guess you don't perceive seeking help as self motivation. During the CELTA course, they teach you how to write up a very thorough lesson plan. If they didn't teach how to prepare a lesson plan and then wanted you to write one, would you be be unable to self-motivate, or have difficulty planning and organising? Personally, I need to be shown how before I am able to do it to the best of my ability. Having never completed a resume and cover letter for professional purposes I wanted to get some advice. That is one among many things they do not teach you during the CELTA course.

You know, the whole point of the "Newbie Forum" is that one can feel free to ask questions, which may seem dumb to someone who has been in the business as long as it seems you have, and receive responses without fear of ridicule or recruiters.
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khmerhit



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

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's nice to be a newbie -- but it doesn't last for long. If you think Rogan was being rude or blunt, you ain't seen nothing yet. I don't mean to discourage you, but you should be prepared for a lot worse than that. And you'll get it from every angle too, sometimes from very unexpected quarters, like people who you think are your friends. DOSs, students, fellow teachers sometimes, they will all weigh in, believe me-- so get ready for it! Having said that, it sounds like you've got some self-respect. Hold on to it, you'll be needing it!
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khmerhit



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

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's nice to be a newbie -- but it doesn't last for long. If you think Rogan was being rude or blunt, you ain't seen nothing yet. I don't mean to discourage you, but you should be prepared for a lot worse than that. And you'll get it from every angle too, sometimes from very unexpected quarters, like people who you think are your friends. DOSs, students, fellow teachers sometimes, they will all weigh in, believe me-- so get ready for it! Having said that, it sounds like you've got some self-respect. Hold on to it, you'll be needing it!
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rogan



Joined: 03 Mar 2003
Posts: 416
Location: at home, in France

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MoggIntellect

Tact, yes I learnt all about that in psy 101 many, many years ago.

But there are basic professional skills that every professional should acquire - and preparing your "resume" is one of them (if you hope to get into the classroom as a teacher that is)

Second, I was tactful - you could have received a much harsher reply based on your own words.

Third, most of us try to help the newbies, but some of you never heed the message.
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xnihil



Joined: 06 May 2003
Posts: 92
Location: Egypt

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So Rogan,

Your basic response to a legitimate question, ie does anybody have any good suggestions about a resume, is:

You suck, don't even bother, you'll never be a good teacher if you ask such obviously dumb questions.


Exactly how do you think this advice would help anyone?

It seems you're only trying to convince yourself that your profession is difficult to get into, so that you don't feel like some sort of failure. I understand the impulse, but that's why we created the newbie forum. (keep your bitter cynicism to yourself).

Mogg:
The best advice I ever got when I began working on my resume was: get all of your information down on paper, in the right order before you do any formating. It sounds like nothing, but I promise, it will save you a lot of time and headaches. Type everything in the same font, in a list form, with no bullets or dashes or anything like that. Then go in and add your italics, headers and everything else. That way, you can easily change the format several times to see which one works best for you.


Also: don't confuse a CV with a resume. They are two different things and are appropriate in different circumstances. At the begining of a career, I'd recommend a resume, which is usually one page long. A CV lists everything you've done, with detail, and, especially if there's not much to put on there, can look pretty lame if its short.

Good luck!
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xnihil



Joined: 06 May 2003
Posts: 92
Location: Egypt

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rogan,

After reading my above post, it occurs to me that my obvious rancor and scorn are completely uncalled for. I shouldn't assume at all that you are a bitter, cynical failure just because you unfairly jump all over an innoccent newbie in a newbie forum and then defend your post by saying "I'm only trying to help."

Please excuse the bitter and angry tone, it was completely uncalled for.
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xnihil



Joined: 06 May 2003
Posts: 92
Location: Egypt

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 7:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rogan,

Darn it all! After reading my last post, I realize that I have completely compounded my earlier bitter and angry post by writng an obviously insincere and sarcastic apology. This sort of behavior is completely uncalled for and I would dearly like to stop. I appear to be unable however for every single thing I write seems to be simply dripping with irony and bile. I better stop while I'm behind. No hard feelings, I hope.

Cheers
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rogan



Joined: 03 Mar 2003
Posts: 416
Location: at home, in France

PostPosted: Wed Jun 11, 2003 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ask me if I'm a truck.

I'd rather be a lorry. Laughing

No probs.

As a bitter, cynical, unhelpful failure I'm currently having to reject very interesting, highly paid offers, from 3 Eastern European Countries Question Question Question
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