Thoughts on Organizing Your C.V.

I spent some time this past semester revising my curriculum vitae, or C.V.,  for the purposes of applying for promotion here at ULM. Most of my revisions had less to do with design or content, and more to do with the organization of existing material. Having served on several search committees at the departmental level and higher, I can say that there are many effective ways to organize this document. Your C.V. should be honest, clear, and organized, and present a complete picture of your professional accomplishments, without being padded with extraneous information. For example, you generally do not need to list every church gig or pick-up ensemble performance, unless they are of a high profile nature.  If you have an eye for graphic design and want to create something visually engaging, by all means do so, but make sure that content always takes priority.

If you’re just getting started with a C.V., the following links under “General Advice” will be very helpful in assembling a basic outline. From there, feel free to add some of the items listed in “Categories for Musicians: A Few Possibilities.” Be open to suggestions from others on your C.V., and try to make time each month or so to update it with your most recent accomplishments. Having an updated C.V. will save you time when the next opportunity comes along!

General Advice

Categories for Musicians: A Few Possibilities

  • Performance Positions – List in reverse chronological order, include past and present professional orchestra/band positions, established chamber ensembles, etc.
  • Music Festivals and Institutes Attended
  • Adjudication Experience – Competitions, auditions, etc.
  • Publications – in addition to the traditional books, articles, and reviews, you can list audio recordings (as a solo/featured artist, or collaborating artist), original compositions, musical arrangements, etc.) If you have an active professional website or YouTube channel you may consider including these as well. Organize all of the above by category, so that they are clear to the reader at a glance.
  • Selected Student Positions and Accomplishments – Jobs, competitions, auditions, etc.
  • Commissions and Premieres
  • Guest Masterclasses
  • Conference Performances and Presentations – You may consider organizing these both chronologically and by scope: international, national, regional, and state. I like this because it draws attention to the most high profile things you have done.
  • Selected Solo and Chamber Music Performances – You will want to limit these to the most significant ones.
  • Recent Orchestral Performances – Again, limit these to the most recent and/or significant.

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