What’s the difference between a CV and a Resume

5 min read

Curriculum Vitae and a professional resume are professional documents, yet they are poles apart. In simpler words, they both can lead you towards getting an interview but they have specific differences. If you want to know what the difference between a CV and a resume is, keep reading.

Did you ever wonder why the British people apply for a job using a CV while an American with a professional resume? Why do Aussies use them both? If you have not pondered over these facts, then it is time to start thinking and seeking answers.

What is the difference between a CV and a Resume?

Our blog will answer your query about the difference between a CV and a resume and will reveal where in the world you need to use these in the right way. However, before digging into their differences, let us look over their definitions, stated below.

Definition of a CV

CV is the abbreviation for Curriculum Vitae. It is a Latin word, which means ‘course of life.’ 

CV is an in-depth document that consumes more than two pages, comprising of every detail about your professional and personal achievements. A Curriculum Vitae highlights your accomplishments and goals and it is more than just a career biography in many ways.

The document is designed in a chronological order, which helps managers get an overview of the candidate’s working career. A CV is static and does not change according to job descriptions.

Definition of a Resume

A concise document, not more than two pages, is a resume. Thus, it does not give every detail and aims to help you stand out from your peers. Additionally, you can modify the summary so that it agrees to job descriptions, and tailor the needs of a specific job type.

The order of the information in a resume does not have to be chronological. It is more like a customized or personalized document. Moreover, it hints at your skillset specifically instead of achievements only.

A quick list of the differences between a CV and a Resume

Here is a rundown of all the difference between a CV and a resume, which are below:

1. Aim

As mentioned earlier, the design of a CV provides all the details about your educational history, scholarships, grants, previous jobs, and conference presentations related to your career. On the other hand, a resume list of all the reasons that show that you are qualified for a specific job type. It only includes relevant and recent work experience and does not list every job you had done before.

2. Design 

A CV is designed chronologically, with minimum incorporation of designs and styles. Moreover, it has specific headings to organize it properly. However, it should contain white space than a CV when it comes to a professional resume. Additionally, the content is specific to the section heading and includes bullet points that are not on a CV.

3. Length 

A CV is not limited in size and can be as long as possible. As you mark a progression in your career, it will get lengthier only. However, a professional resume is not more than two pages and hints only at your recent job experience.

Checkout can a resume be two pages

4. Layout is the main difference between a CV and a Resume

A CV’s layout consists of several sections such as education, academic employments (if any), publications, certifications, scholarships, teaching or research experience, affiliations, and references, etc.

On the other hand, a resume is a documented summary of your profile section with your qualifications. It only includes subdivisions of related work knowledge, schooling, honors, and hobbies. Additionally, depending on the job type you are applying for, you might consist of languages, volunteer work, professional certificates, and affiliations.

5. Geographic Location

In the regions around the globe, UK, New Zealand and some part of Europe seeks for a job while applying with a CV. However, in areas of South Africa, India, and Australia, people use both terms interchangeably. Moreover, when it comes to the United States, people use the two terms for different purposes and they usually are poles apart.

When to Use a CV and Professional Resume

Since now you are familiar with the difference between a CV and a resume, here comes the answer to this million-dollar question.

A CV is for applying to positions when you seek to be a job in niches like the teaching and research industries. Submit a CV when you apply for academic jobs, grants, or fellowships in simpler words. However, as far as a resume is considered, people mostly use it to seek employment out of the academic sector. Moreover, you can say that it is required for positions that require info related to your abilities instead of your schooling.

Learn how to Create Resume Online in 5 minutes


To sum up the difference between a CV and a resume, we can say that a CV is lengthier since it covers every aspect. Yet, the goals remain the same and lead you towards getting your desired job.


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