Print this page | Franšais

Developing Your Resume

Teach in Ontario

Now that you have a clear understanding of what you have to offer to an employer and have researched the directions and expectations of your target school board, you are ready to develop an effective resume.

Your resume is a reflection of you – your skills, education and experience. Make certain you spend the time and effort required to develop a professional document that will help you in your search for a teaching position.

What are the common elements in a resume?

Employers often receive hundreds of applications for a single teaching position. You want to create a resume that attracts attention, and is also well-structured, easy to read and cleanly presented.

  1. Headings

  2. Here are the key headings to include in your resume:

    Personal Information

    • Include your name, address, telephone number and email address if you regularly check your email
    • Do not include other personal information like your social insurance number, health status, marital status, citizenship etc.

    Education

    • List education achievement in order of most recent first
    • List date, degree, name of institution and location of institution
    • Include special awards, scholarships or bursaries

    Additional qualifications

    • List additional qualifications here
    • List date, course title, name of institution

    Work Experience

    • List start year and end year, position title, organization name and location
    • Use bullets to list most important and applicable responsibilities and accomplishments
    • Begin bullets with action words (see list of action words below)
    • Avoid using personal pronouns (such as, "I")
    • Include volunteer experiences

    Activities and Interests

    • Transferable skills are often demonstrated in this section
    • List clubs, professional associations, volunteer experiences, interests and other activities
    • Define level of responsibility, duties and any special accomplishments

    References

    • List three professional references; ideally, at least one should have seen you teach
    • Provide title, organization, telephone number and email address for each
    • Be sure you have spoken to references before using their names
    • Obtain alternate numbers for references if vacations are a possibility

    Other possible headings include professional development, language skills or special skills, extra-curricular or co-curricular activities. (This is not an exhaustive list. These headings should suit your skills and experience, as well as the needs of the school that your experiences and interests may address)

    List of Action Words to Use in Your Resume

    Able
    Accepted
    Accommodated
    Accomplished
    Achieved
    Acquired
    Acted
    Activated
    Adapted
    Adjusted
    Administered
    Advised
    Allocated
    Analyzed
    Answered
    Applied
    Appointed
    Appraised
    Arranged
    Assembled
    Assessed
    Assigned
    Assisted
    Assured
    Attended
    Audited
    Authorized
    Automated
    Balanced
    Began
    Brought
    Built
    Calculated
    Canvassed
    Cared for
    Categorized
    Classified
    Coached
    Coded
    Collaborated
    Collected
    Combined
    Commended
    Communicated
    Compared
    Compiled
    Completed
    Composed
    Computed
    Conceived
    Conducted
    Conferred
    Confirmed
    Consolidated
    Constructed
    Contacted
    Contributed
    Controlled
    Converted
    Coordinated
    Correlated
    Counselled
    Created
    Cultivated
    Customized
    Dealt with
    Debugged
    Decided
    Dedicated
    Defined
    Delegated
    Delivered
    Demonstrated
    Described
    Designated
    Designed
    Detailed
    Detected
    Determined
    Developed
    Devised
    Diagnosed
    Directed
    Discussed
    Disseminated
    Documented
    Drafted
    Earned
    Edited
    Educated
    Employed
    Encoded
    Encouraged
    Engaged
    Engineered
    Enhanced
    Ensured
    Established
    Estimated
    Evaluated
    Examined
    Excelled
    Exercised
    Exerted
    Expanded
    Explained
    Facilitated
    Filed
    Finalized
    Forecast
    Formulated
    Forwarded
    Founded
    Furnished
    Gathered
    Generated
    Graded
    Granted
    Guided
    Handled
    Headed
    Helped
    Identified
    Implemented
    Improved
    Improvised
    Increased
    Indexed
    Indicated
    Influenced
    Informed
    Initiated
    Inspected
    Instituted
    Instructed
    Integrated
    Interacted
    Interfaced
    Interpreted
    Interviewed
    Introduced
    Invented
    Investigated
    Justified
    Labeled
    Launched
    Lectured
    Led
    Licensed
    Located
    Maintained
    Managed
    Manipulated
    Manufactured
    Measured
    Mechanized
    Mediated
    Minimized
    Modeled
    Modified
    Monitored
    Motivated
    Negotiated
    Notified
    Observed
    Obtained
    Operated
    Orchestrated
    Ordered
    Organized
    Originated
    Outlined
    Oversaw
    Packaged
    Participated
    Perceived
    Performed
    Planned
    Positioned
    Postulated
    Prepared
    Prescribed
    Presented
    Presided
    Printed
    Processed
    Produced
    Programmed
    Promoted
    Provided
    Published
    Qualified
    Questioned
    Rated
    Received
    Recommended
    Recorded
    Reduced
    Referred
    Regulated
    Related
    Removed
    Reorganized
    Repaired
    Replaced
    Reported
    Represented
    Researched
    Responded
    Reviewed
    Revised
    Saved
    Scheduled
    Screened
    Searched
    Secured
    Selected
    Served
    Set
    Settled
    Simplified
    Solicited
    Spoke
    Stimulated
    Strengthened
    Studied
    Submitted
    Succeeded
    Summarized
    Supervised
    Supplied
    Surveyed
    Taught
    Tested
    Theorized
    Trained
    Transferred
    Transformed
    Translated
    Transmitted
    Transported
    Treated
    Tutored
    Updated
    Used
    Utilized
    Verified
    Visited
    Volunteered
    Worked

    From Employment Handbook for Teachers Student Services OISE/UT

  3. Bullets

  4. Action-oriented and detailed bullets are an absolute key. Adding more detail will create interest in your reader and give him/her a better picture of what you have done. Compare the following examples:

    Example 1

    • Instructed students in Grade 9 and 11 Mathematics
    • Designed and taught grades 9 and 11 Mathematics classes, incorporating a variety of group-based learning strategies

    Example 2

    • Evaluated and assessed student performance
    • Assessed students’ learning by using various tools, such as questions/discussions, a variety of assignments, homework, rubrics, quizzes, and tests

    In each case, the second bullet provides a richer description of what you have done and will create more interest in the reader.

    Check that every bullet in your resume begins with an action verb and that it contains at least some detailed information about your job activities. Gear these details towards what you know are expected teaching skills, such as assessment, classroom management, supporting diverse learners. This requires creativity, and lots of time and effort.

  5. Format

  6. Don’t underestimate the importance of having a resume that is well-formatted with a good sized, easily readable font (i.e., 12 pt, Times New Roman). Don’t crowd your margins to add more information, Leave a one inch margin around the edge. Hold your resume out at arm’s length or post it on the wall to look at it. It should appear well-organized and spacious enough to be easily read. More is not necessarily better!

  7. Avoid Errors

  8. Even a single typo can mean your resume ends up in the wrong pile. Proofread your work many times, but also enlist the help of others. If at all possible, have someone in the educational field proofread it for you, as well.

Advice from a Principal

Organize the experiences under the traditional headings found on resumes: Under Educational Experience, list accomplishments wherever they occurred. Also include facility with both official languages and other languages spoken/written. Be sure you have your references ready, both within Canada and from your home country with correct numbers and times individuals can be reached. Once you have put all this information into an accepted format, have someone from the field of education proofread it for you.

Sample Resume

Download as a Word Document or as a PDF .

Previous Section
The Cover Letter