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Resume Checklist


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Resume Checklist

Appearance and Organization

  • Visually pleasing and easy to read
  • Looks like a professional document


  • Correct and consistent verb tenses (current job in present tense and past jobs in past tense)
  • Minimal use of repetitive words
  • Capitalization, punctuation, and date formats are consistent There are NO typos or spelling errors


  • No more than two typestyles are used
  • Bolding, italics, and capitalization are minimal and consistent
  • Margins and line spacing keep the page from looking too crowded
  • Printing is on one side of the page only
  • Paper is high-quality white or off-white bond
  • The reproduction is good with no faint letters, stray marks, or blurry words

Contact Information

  • Clearly presented at top of each page
  • Include current address and permanent address (if applicable, each with zip codes)
  • Include full telephone number(s) where you can be reached during business
  • Include a professional e-mail address


  • List most recent degree, school, and location
  • Indicate major
  • List honors and awards
  • Include relevant certificate programs


  • Consistent with objective
  • Match job requirements


  • Each paid, volunteer, or internship relevant to your objective that you list should include:
  • Title, organization name, city, state and/or country
  • Dates of employment (easy to find and consistently formatted)
  • Description of responsibilities using action verbs

Extracurricular Activities

  • List offices held, including title and organization
  • Emphasize leadership roles
  • Include memberships and affiliations
  • Include sports participation
  • Include certifications such as CPR
  • Include foreign study/language fluency and relevant conferences attended

Common Mistakes

Too long

  • One page is preferred in most fields; up to two pages if your experience warrants it.

Grammatical or spelling errors

  • Such errors suggest carelessness. Have at least two others proofread your resume. Do not rely on your computer’s spell-checker or grammar-checker.

Hard to read

  • A poorly typed or copied resume does not look professional.
  • Print copies on a laser printer and use plain typeface, no smaller than 12-point font.


  • No logical order or arrangement; not easily read; hard to follow.

Too many words used to say too little

  • Use incomplete sentences in order to say as much as possible with as few words as possible. Avoid jargon.

Irrelevant information

  • If possible, customize each resume for each position. Never include age, sex, marital status, children, height, weight, health, church membership, etc. Too snazzy
  • Avoid exotic fonts, colored paper, photographs, binders, and graphics. Use good quality white or off-white paper, plain type, black ink, and avoid symbols.

Too Modest

  • Your resume is a sales tool that showcases your best qualifications in comparison with other candidates. Put your best foot forward without misrepresentation, falsification, or arrogance.

Unclear career objective

  • Too long, too short, not clearly defined, inappropriate

Poor description of experiences

  • Not enough description of tasks, skills, accomplishments; unnecessary addresses; too many dates; not results oriented.

Incomplete references

  • Include name, address, phone number, e-mail and correct title of all references